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The rain poured throughout the game, including during halftime when the San Francisco 49ers honored former owner and recent Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee Eddie DeBartolo Jr. With a large contingent of the fans at Levi's Stadium there to support the visiting New England Patriots, the seats were nearly empty as DeBartolo was presented with the Hall of Fame Ring of Excellence during the rain-soaked ceremony.
The 30-17 loss was the 49ers' ninth-straight, which has not happened since 1978. It is the first time in 49ers history that a single coach has lost nine straight games. In 1978, the nine straight losses came between two coaches. They were Pete McCulley and Fred O'Connor.
The 49ers opened the game by going 3-and-out in a series that ended with New England SS Patrick Chung sacking quarterback Colin Kaepernick. It was the second sack of Kaepernick in the opening three offensive plays.
On the following drive, Tom Brady and the Patriots offense converted twice on third down to drive just 27 yards for an early touchdown. A failed extra point gave New England a 6-0 lead.
The San Francisco offense drove down the field on the next drive but failed to get the football into the end zone and settled for a field goal. However, it was a milestone field goal for 49ers kicker Phil Dawson. It was the 400th time that the efficient kicker had sailed the ball through the goalpost uprights. Only nine other players in NFL history have successfully kicked 400 field goals. It was a big personal accomplishment on a team that lacks many.
RB James White hauled in a 9-yard touchdown pass from Brady to extend the New England lead to 13-3. 49ers TE Vance McDonald hauled in his fourth touchdown of the season on an 18-yard pass from Kaepernick in the second quarter to bring San Francisco within 3.
|49ers Team Leaders|
The next score would not come until the first play of the fourth quarter when Brady escaped what could have easily been a sack and hit WR Danny Amendola in the end zone to give the Patriots a 20-10 lead. The overwhelmingly pro-Patriots crowd chanted Brady's name following the touchdown. Brady did the same thing later in the quarter, escaping a possible sack and hitting WR Malcolm Mitchell in stride for the 56-yard touchdown. A Stephen Gostkowski field goal later put New England up by 20.
A late 13-yard touchdown pass from Kaepernick to RB Shaun Draughn cut the Patriots lead to 13, where the game would end.
For the 49ers, Kaepernick finished the game 16 of 30 for 206 yards and two touchdowns. RB Carlos Hyde led the team in rushing with 86 yards on 19 carries. TE Vance McDonald had 46 yards and a touchdown on three catches. 49ers receivers combined for four catches.
For the Patriots, Brady completed 24 of his 40 passes for 280 yards and four touchdowns. Each of his touchdown passes was to a different receiver. RB LeGarrette Blount had 124 yards rushing.
|Penalties (Yds)||5 (40)||10 (69)|
|Punts (AVG)||5 (37)||8 (33)|
|Time of Pos.||28:41||30:45|
DE Quinton Dial and ILB Nick Bellore were all shaken up during the game.
DB Jimmie Ward was taken to the locker room in the fourth quarter to be examined for a possible concussion.
FS Eric Reid suffered an arm injury in the fourth quarter. The injury reportedly could be serious.
Notes and Quotes
The 49ers defense has allowed a 100-yard rusher eight times in their last nine games. This time, it was to Patriots RB LeGarrette Blount.
"I think I've seen our players develop," said head coach Chip Kelly when asked if the 49ers are getting anything out of this lost season.
Kelly said that he was hoping that Eddie DeBartolo Jr. would be their good luck charm in the game but they let him down.
"I haven't really thought about it, but there were a lot out there," Kaepernick said of the number of Patriots fans at Levi's Stadium.