This is the live blog for the San Francisco 49ers (12-4) week 18 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals (4-12) from Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara. I will provide updates and analysis from the press box throughout the game.
12:00 49ers Inactives: Jimmy Garoppolo, Kevin Givens, Ambry Thomas, Aaron Banks, Dre Greenlaw, Drake Jackson, Ross Dwelley
Elijah Mitchell, Deebo Samuel and Christian McCaffrey are all active today.
12:08 Cardinals Inactives: Zach Allen, Robbie Anderson, Zaven Collins, James Conner, Antonio Hamilton, DeAndre Hopkins, Colt McCoy, Lecitus Smith, Marco Wilson
Based on the active rosters this game should be over by halftime.
1:08 Minnesota’s 29-13 win over Chicago means the 49ers need to win today to hold on to the number two seed.
1:23 The 49ers have won the toss and deferred. Arizona will start on offense.
1:27 A second consecutive bad start for the 49ers defense. Arizona runs a flea-flicker on the second play of the game and David Blough hits A.J. Green for a 77-yard touchdown.
Deommodore Lenoir was in perfect position, but as is usually the case got beat at the catch point.
Cardinals 6 49ers 0
1:33 That was easy.
Christian McCaffrey takes a screen from Brock Purdy down the right sideline from 21-yards out for a touchdown. On the six play, 75-yard drive Brock Purdy hit all three passes for 53 yards.
49ers 7 Cardinals 6
1:39 Samson Ebukam ends a Cardinals out with the sack. He now has a career high 5.5 on the season.
1:43 J.J. Watt beats Spencer Burford on second down for his 11.5 sack of the season.
Purdy follows up the sack with an inaccurate throw to Brandon Aiyuk over the middle and the receiver is unable to make the diving catch. Quick three and out for the 49ers offense.
Elijah Mitchell opened the possession with his first carry since November 27, a gain of one up the middle.
1:51 The 49ers defense comes up with another stop on 4th and 1, stuffing Blough on a quarterback sneak. San Francisco takes over at the Cardinals 39.
1:53 After a terrific opening possession the 49ers offense looks like it’s ready to take the rest of the day off. A loss of two by McCaffrey followed by a grounder from Purdy to Samuel. On third down Purdy gets pressured and tries to run out to his left and is sacked for a loss of 17.
1:59 The 49ers defense has settled in nicely. On third down Azeez Al-Shaair blitzes through the middle and forces Blough to dump it off to his running back.
Time for the offense to do something here.
2:04 Elijah Mitchell with a gain of six to close out the first quarter.
Purdy is 5-7, 73 yards and one touchdown so far. He is also the 49ers leading rusher with 13 yards on a scramble during the opening possession.
2:09 Three bad plays from the 49ers to open the second quarter. Purdy throws wide of Jauan Jennings on first down. On second down there is a breakdown between Purdy and Elijah Mitchell which leads to the quarterback getting tackled for a loss of six. On third down Purdy had Kittle open, didn’t throw it, scrambles out to his left and finally throws it to Kittle for an incompletion.
2:12 On the Cardinals first play, Blough throws the ball right to Tashaun Gipson for an interception. Terrible throw and Gipson’s fourth interception of the year. 49ers take over at the Arizona 18.
2:15 Elijah Mitchell blasts over left guard for a five-yard touchdown to give the 49ers a 14-6 lead.
The 49ers had Mitchell, McCaffrey and Samuel all on the field together on that touchdown play.
2:21 Nick Bosa gets to Blough for the sack. He now has 18.5 this season. Needs one more to tie Aldon Smith for the most in a single season in 49ers franchise history.
2:28 Arizona goes 75 yards in 12 plays for a touchdown. The big play was a gain of 17 to convert on third and 14. San Francisco brought pressure and Blough hit running back Corey Clement over the middle and there was not a 49ers defender anywhere near him.
Linebacker Azeez Al-Shaair got up slowly after making a tackle. A couple plays later he was beat for a first down by Trey McBride. He is no being checked out on the 49ers sideline.
49ers 14 Cardinals 13
2:49 Purdy hits George Kittle in the back left corner of the endzone for the 49ers touchdown. That is Purdy’s second touchdown of the game. He’s now hit at least two touchdowns in six consecutive games.
Purdy opened the 9 play, 66-yard drive with a 22-yard completion over the middle to Brandon Aiyuk. Aiyuk is five yards short of his first 1,000-yard season.
2:53 Halftime. 49ers 21 Cardinals 13
3:11 49ers offense opens the second half like they opened the first half going right through the Cardinals for a touchdown. Elijah Mitchell scores from six yards out over left guard. His second touchdown of the game.
Brandon Aiyuk opened the possession with a 21-yard grab over the middle to get over 1,000 yards receiving for the season.
The two big plays came when Christian McCaffrey took a draw for 18-yards on third and 17. Elijah Mitchell took a screen from Purdy down the right side for 37-yards. The pass was backward, so it was officially a run.
49ers 28 Cardinals 13
3:17 Tashaun Gipson with his second interception of the game on a deep throw. There wasn’t a Cardinal player anywhere near where that ball was thrown.
3:22 Spencer Burford gives up another sack, this one ending the 49ers possession deep in Cardinals territory.
Robbie Gould hits from 27-yards out. 49ers 31 Cardinals 13
3:30 Jordan Willis with the sack of Blough leading to a fumble recovered by Michael Dwumfour at the Cardinals 28.
3:37 Purdy to Kittle off play action for his third touchdown pass of the game. Kittle has seven touchdown receptions over the last four games.
Purdy also connected with Kittle for 15 yards to get down to the four.
This one has become a laugher. 49ers 38 Cardinals 13