Originally posted by BrianGO:
For those who say Aldon (or our defense) wasn't getting a pass rush:
19:32 - Aldon collapses the pocket, but the QB quickly floats a perfect pass over the shoulder of the WR.
21:32 - Aldon again. Immediate pressure up the middle, ending the drive.
34:22 - Immediate pressure right up the middle from Aldon, but quarterback scrambles to the left and runs for a first down.
36:22 - Aldon bites on the play action for a half second, but then beats his man and forces the quarterback to scramble yet again. Quarterback makes another big play.
39:46 - Aldon is forced to decoy inside on a designed stunt, where McDonald takes too long to get around the edge. Fangio's got to stop using Aldon as a decoy.
40:30 - Aldon destroys his man and is about to make the sack, but the quarterback makes the play of the game with his feet and runs through the entire defense for a touchdown.
54:05 - Aldon provides instant pressure again as he is unblocked. The quarterback looks to his hot read but they can't make the catch.
54:40 - A carbon copy of the last play. Aldon is instantly on the quarterback, but he finds the exact same hot read, this time he makes the catch for a first down.
55:48 - Aldon beats his man again and the quarterback has to throw the ball away. Aldon has been in the quarterbacks face the last four plays.
57:04 - This is becoming hilarious. Two plays later, Aldon AGAIN forces the quarterback to scramble to the right out of the pocket as he chases him. Ponder makes a perfect throw in tight coverage for a first down despite the pressure.
I don't really feel like going through the whole second half. The first half is where the Vicking's kicked our asses and won the game. They were kicking our asses despite enormous pressure being applied by Aldon Smith. Aldon Smith didn't get a sack, and that's what people care about, but man, please don't say Aldon or "the 49ers" had no pass rush in this game, because that would be blatantly false.
On the first drive Minnesota did nothing but either run, or get rid of the ball instantly on a quick pass. Aldon spent a lot of time in pass coverage. The only time they didn't get rid of the ball instantly was when Goldson was free running at Ponder, where Ponder ran backwards and made a perfect throw for a touchdown on 4th down.
Of the times Aldon actually rushed the pocket, I could only count 2-3 times where he DIDN'T apply big time pressure. He was really dominant in the first half.
A couple other notes:
26:49 - Boone should not have pushed Gore. He was on his feet, had blocks with no one around him, had to beat one man to break a huge play. You only push the running back into the endzone or if there are tacklers hanging on to him.
31:10 - Smith needs to see Gore in the left flat for the first down. He stays with his first read because it is open, but just being open is not good enough on 3rd down. you have to get the first down, which means you have to read the whole field and look for where the defense has opened up.
51:05 - Again Smith goes with his first read. He completes the pass on third down, but it's short of the marker and the other side had Vernon Davis open for a first down if he has a little more patience with the pocket. The "throw to the first open read" mentality is what is causing a lot of our problems on 3rd down. It's helping us on 1st and 2nd down, but we need a different, more bold approach on 3rd down.
Great stuff...thank you!
I half-agreed initially re: Aldon and then really agreed after watching again!
Regarding your two points, I like them...haven't watched again but that seems objective and legit. Given that he went first-option, why did the receivers come up a yard short? Poor play design? Great pursuit by the defense? Our other guys didn't box out? Routes appear too short consistently? Stuff like that...sounds like per your analysis, the check downs (2nd read) may have been the best option here?