The 49ers put up 37 points on Saturday against Washington. The offensive output was impressive, but it came with a lot of help from a defense which gave San Francisco terrific field position throughout the second half.
Here is a look at how the offense and defense played together to create a dominating win over a tough opponent.
Goal line stop
Third and Goal, 49ers 1
After going three and out on their first two possessions, Washington drives 84 yards to the 49ers one yard line.
On third down Akeem Spence and T.Y. McGill drive back the interior of the Commanders offensive line. McGill gets a piece of Brian Robinson Jr. and although he doesn’t make the tackle, he disrupts the back enough that Dre Greenlaw is able to make the stop for no gain.
Fourth and Goal, 49ers 1
Penetration from Javon Kinlaw eats up two Commanders offensive linemen. T.Y. McGill slants inside taking out another offensive lineman, allowing Fred Warner a free run at Robinson Jr. and he drops the back for no gain.
Ray-Ray McCloud hits paydirt
Second and ten, 49ers 29
Following the goal line stand, the 49ers offense gets out of the shadow of its own endzone behind strong runs from Christian McCaffrey and a 15-yard completion from Brock Purdy to Jauan Jennings.
After a first down pass from Purdy is batted down at the line of scrimmage, Kyle Shanahan dials up a sweep for wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud. McCloud takes it 71-yards for the 49ers longest touchdown run of the season.
What makes this play go is the blocking. Right guard Spencer Burford does a good job of reaching the defensive tackle and Mike McGlinchey gets upfield to block the linebacker. Christian McCaffrey and George Kittle double team the defensive end and Willie Snead gets the final block allowing McCloud to run untouched through the Commanders defense.
Willie Snead was called up from the practice squad on Saturday, played one snap and made it count.
Brock Purdy goes deep
Third and four, Commanders 34
For the second week in a row Brock Purdy connects with George Kittle for a long touchdown on the 49ers opening possession of the second half.
It looks like Kittle was supposed to run a deep crosser but adjusts his route when the safety sits. The adjustment takes Kittle into the same area as Ray-Ray McCloud, but it works out as Purdy hits the tight end in stride to give the lead back to San Francisco.
Another fourth down defensive stop
Fourth and one, Commanders 34
Down by seven, Commanders head coach Ron Rivera lives up to his “Riverboat Ron” nickname by going for it on fourth down despite being deep in his own end of the field.
Rivera’s roll of the dice comes up Snake Eyes thanks to Arik Armstead and Charles Omenihu who hold the point of attack. Talanoa Hufanga also comes in from his safety position and the 49ers defense stuffs Taylor Heinicke for no gain.
Back to Kittle
Second and nine, Commanders 33
On the second play following the turnover on downs Brock Purdy makes Rivera pay for his aggressive decision making.
Purdy fakes a toss to Ty Davis-Price and finds George Kittle alone thanks to the Washington defense over pursing the run. Kittle takes the six-yard pass from Purdy and races the remaining 27 yards to give the 49ers a 21-7 lead.
Aiyuk catch and run
On the first offensive snap following the touchdown to Kittle, Purdy nearly gets another explosive touchdown.
Brandon Aiyuk runs a terrific route to create separation from the Washington defender. Seeing this after a play fake to Christian McCaffrey, Purdy rips a 14-yard out to Aiyuk who takes the ball another 40 yards to set the 49ers up deep inside Washington territory. This led to a Robbie Gould field goal to extend San Francisco’s advantage to 24-14.
Nick Bosa does it again.
Second down and eight, Commanders 21
On the second play of the ensuing Washington possession, Nick Bosa blasts around the right tackle and gets a strip sack of Taylor Heinicke. Jordan Willis has solid pressure as well and grabs the fumble out of the air to force the first Washington turnover of the game.
Taking over from the Washington 11, the 49ers offense can only pick up six yards and settles for another short field goal from Robbie Gould
Jimmie Ward knocks Taylor Heinicke out of the game
On the second play of the ensuing Washington possession Heinicke tries to hit Brian Robinson Jr. with a check down and misses badly. Playing zone coverage, Jimmie Ward breaks on the ball and comes down with his career high third interception of the season.
Taking over at the Washington 25, the 49ers pick up just eight yards and settle for another Robbie Gould field goal to go up 30-14.