49ers Webzone highlights the first half of action between the Niners and visiting Dallas Cowboys in Week 1 of the 2018 preseason.


San Francisco started off on defense. Jimmie Ward got the start at cornerback in place of Richard Sherman, who was out with a nagging hamstring injury. And rookie seventh-round draft pick, defensive tackle Jullian Taylor, ended up getting the start at strong-side defensive end in place of Arik Armstead, who is also out with a hamstring issue. Meanwhile, linebacker Malcolm Smith exited the game early with a hamstring injury.

Ward ended up giving up the first score of the game -- a 30-yard touchdown by wide receiver Michael Gallup, where Ward appeared to lose the ball in the sun. Still, Ward lost coverage and didn't look good doing so.

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On their own first offensive drive, the Niners managed to convert two third downs with Jimmy Garoppolo under center on his lone drive. But a number of tackles for losses forced the 49ers to punt.

Both teams began subbing out starters afterwards, although defensive end Solomon Thomas suffered an apparent head injury on the Niners' second defensive stand. He was able to walk off the field under his own power, though, after registering three tackles and half a sack.

San Francisco also suffered injuries to tight end George Kittle, offensive tackle Garry Gilliam and running back Matt Breida in the first quarter too.


Running back Raheem Mostert picked up a nice 19-yard gain to close out the first quarter, although Dallas still led 7-0.

No. 2 quarterback C.J. Beathard hit wide receiver Kendrick Bourne on a nifty 18-yard gain for a first down shortly into the second quarter. Bourne, who is competing for one of the depth spots at receiver, has looked solid in training camp so far.


The 49ers drive halted, though, after a tipped pass was picked off by the Cowboys' Joe Thomas in the red zone, which hurts.

After some back-and-forth, lackluster football towards the middle of the second quarter, Dallas managed to increase its lead 14-0 after a one-yard rushing touchdown by Cowboys rookie tailback Bo Scarbrough.

For the most part, San Francisco's rushing attack was stymied by Dallas. It could make sense why, as the Niners offensive line is still looking to jell. And the various combinations seen in the preseason can often make this chemistry difficult.

Regardless, the Niners were able to get into the red zone again at the tail end of the first half, thanks largely to a key defensive pass-interference call drawn by wide receiver Kendrick Bourne, which was good to see from the second-year receiver. And this led to a one-yard touchdown run by Joe Williams to get San Francisco on the board, 14-7 in favor of Dallas.

It was a somewhat eventful first half, although let's hope the injuries are over with.

Peter Panacy has been writing about the 49ers since 2011 for outlets like Bleacher Report, Niner Noise, 49ers Webzone, and is occasionally heard as a guest on San Francisco's 95.7 FM The Game. Feel free to follow him, or direct any inquiries to @PeterPanacy on Twitter.