Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Christian Kirk (13) is tackled by San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman (25) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 31, 2019, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
SANTA CLARA — Halfway through the season, the 49ers still haven’t lost. But some of the lasting images from their latest win were negative. Of course, images aren’t everything. The 49ers beat the Cardinals, played hard and are the only undefeated team in the NFL. Still, as the coaches and players would admit, some things are concerning.
Richard Sherman missed a tackle near the sideline, and Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Andy Isabella ran 88 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter. Call that lasting image No. 1. Five 49ers defenders streaked down the field, all with chances to bring down Isabella, and none did. They looked like a slapstick act, not an elite defense, as they chased in vain.
Sherman stormed to the sideline, sat on the bench and screamed at defensive backs coach Joe Woods as Woods listened and nodded. Lasting image No. 2.
After the game, Sherman leaned across a podium with his eyes wide open, eagerly awaiting critical questions. Still seething. Lasting image No. 3.
“That was a humbling game,” he admitted. “We need to be humbled on all levels. Everybody will watch the tape and judge themselves critically, because we can’t play like that. That’s not championship football.”
Sherman sounded like the 49ers had lost.
Of course, they didn’t lose. They won 28-25. But they were challenged by a team that probably will win no more than six games this season. Here are five concerns the 49ers must address.