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Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Christian McCaffrey dazzles for 49ers in 31-14 win over Rams

Oct 30, 2022 at 4:14 PM--

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1st 2nd 3rd 4th Tot
SF 0 10 7 14 31
LA 7 7 0 0 14

A little over a week ago, the San Francisco 49ers went the extra mile to acquire Christian McCaffrey, putting together a package of draft picks that caused the Carolina Panthers to send the star running back to the Bay Area instead of trading him to the Los Angeles Rams. On Sunday, McCaffrey put together a performance that made the Rams regret they weren't able to strike a deal.

McCaffrey did it all for the 49ers on Sunday in a 31-14 win over the Rams, becoming the first NFL player since LaDainian Tomlinson in 2005 to run for a touchdown, catch a touchdown and throw for a touchdown in the same game. McCaffrey finished with 94 yards rushing on 18 carries and eight catches for 55 yards.

49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo chipped in with a standout performance, finishing with 235 yards and two touchdowns on 21-of-25 passing. Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford finished with 187 yards on 22-of-33 passing with one touchdown, while the 49ers defense stood strong in the second half after giving up 14 first half points.

First Half

The teams exchanged punts to start the game, as the Rams opened with a three-and-out before the 49ers moved their opening drive into Rams' territory before punting to the Rams' 12-yard line. The Rams then got on the board first, moving 88 yards on plays on their second possession to take a 7-0 lead on 17-play drive that culminated with a third-down touchdown run by Stafford with nine seconds left in the first quarter. It was a drive to forget for the 49ers' defense, which gave up a first down on a 3rd-and-9 earlier in the drive before committing two costly defensive penalties inside the 10-yard line.

The 49ers answered in a way they needed to, putting together a six-play, 71-yard drive that tied the game at seven, thanks to some trickery from McCaffrey. McCaffrey kept the possession alive with a key 9-yard run on a 3rd-and-7 earlier in the drive, then he connected with wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk three plays later for a 34-yard touchdown pass.

Things continued to click on offense for the Rams on the following possession, which turned into a nine-play, 75-yard drive that ended in a 16-yard touchdown pass from Stafford to wide receiver Cooper Kupp. Four of Stafford's passes went to Kupp on this drive before the finisher gave the Rams a 14-7 lead with 6:35 to play in the half.

The 49ers were able to respond with a field goal before halftime, but there was certainly an opportunity for them to get more. The 49ers had a 1st-and-Goal inside the Rams' 8-yard line with two minutes remaining in the half, but Garoppolo was sacked on second down to set up a 3rd-and-Goal from the 12. An incomplete pass to McCaffrey on third down set up a 29-yard field goal from Robbie Gould to cut the Rams' lead to 14-10. The Rams ran out the clock from there to take their lead into the half.

The Rams finished the first half with a 12-9 edge in first downs, a 17:45-12:15 edge in time of possession and a 165-131 edge in total yards. One stat that stood out was third downs, where the Rams converted 5 of 6 against 2 of 4 for the 49ers.

Second Half

Both teams ended their first possessions of the second half with a punt, then McCaffrey made his presence felt with another highlight play, this one giving the 49ers their first lead of the game. McCaffrey gave the 49ers a scare early in the drive when he fumbled the ball into the air and into the hands of receiver Ray-Ray McCloud, but the offense rebounded to move downfield on a series of chunk plays before Garoppolo found McCaffrey in the end zone from nine yards out on a 3rd-and-3 for a spectacular leaping touchdown catch that put the 49ers up 17-14.

Things continued to sway in the 49ers' direction from there, starting with a third down sack from linebacker Fred Warner that forced a three-and-out from the Rams after the touchdown. The 49ers took over at their own 42-yard line following the punt and moved quickly into Rams' territory after a late hit penalty on the first play of the possession. McCaffrey delivered a fancy 24-yard run later in the drive to put the 49ers at the 1-yard line, then McCaffrey dove into the end zone to complete his touchdown trifecta and give the 49ers a 24-14 lead.

The 49ers pulled away from there, primarily due to having tight ends that were able to hold onto the ball. The Rams had an opportunity for a potential game-changing play on their possession after McCaffrey's third touchdown but were forced to punt when tight end Tyler Higbee dropped a pass on a 3rd-and-3 that would have turned into a significant gain. After taking over on their own 27-yard line, Garoppolo connected downfield with tight end Ross Dwelley, who got behind the Rams' defense for a 52-yard gain. Three plays later it was tight end George Kittle's turn when Garoppolo found him in the end zone for a touchdown on a 3rd-and-3, giving the 49ers a 31-14 lead with 6:41 to play.

The Rams took over with 2:24 remaining in the game but threw in the towel after Kupp got banged up on a third-down reception. Stafford ran out the clock on the final play, sending the 49ers back to the Bay with a much-needed win.

The 49ers stand at 4-4 on the season after the win over the Rams, which was their eighth consecutive regular season win in the series. The Rams fell to 3-4 with the loss. The 49ers now enter a bye week, after which they'll finish the season with six of their final nine games at home.

SF Team Stats LA
257 Passing Yards 167
111 Rushing Yards 56
368 Total Yards 223
10.35 Avg Yards per Pass 5.67
4.83 Avg Yards per Run 2.67
0 Fumbles Lost
0 Int Thrown 0
3 Sacks Allowed 2
00:29:56 Time of Pos 00:30:04
3 Penalties 4

49ers Player Stats
Passing Cmp/Att Yds TDs INTs
Jimmy Garoppolo 21/25 235 2 0
Christian McCaffrey 1/1 34 1 0
Rushing Att Yds Avg TDs
Christian McCaffrey 18 94 5.2 1
Jeff Wilson 4 14 3.5 0
Jimmy Garoppolo 1 3 3 0
Receiving Rec Tgt Yds TDs
Brandon Aiyuk 6 6 81 1
Ross Dwelley 1 1 56 0
Christian McCaffrey 8 9 55 1
George Kittle 3 5 39 1
Jeff Wilson 2 2 21 0
Ray-Ray McCloud 1 2 11 0
Tyler Kroft 1 1 6 0
Fumbles Fum Lost
Christian McCaffrey 1 0
Kicking FG Att Lg XP
Robbie Gould 1 1 29 4
Punting No Avg I20 Lg
Mitch Wishnowsky 3 41 3 49
Kickoff Returns Yds Avg TDs Lg
Ray-Ray McCloud 66 33 0 39
Punt Returns Att Avg TDs Lg
Ray-Ray McCloud 3 11.3 0 15
Defense T-A Sck INTs FF
Talanoa Hufanga 6-2 0 0 0
Fred Warner 5-7 1 0 0
Charvarius Ward 5-1 0 0 0
Oren Burks 4-3 0 0 0
Jimmie Ward 2-3 0 0 0
Samson Ebukam 2-1 0 0 0
Nick Bosa 2-1 1 0 0
Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles 2-0 0 0 0
Deommodore Lenoir 2-0 0 0 0
Hassan Ridgeway 1-2 0 0 0
Kerry Hyder 1-0 0 0 0
Ambry Thomas 1-0 0 0 0

Rams Player Stats
Passing Cmp/Att Yds TDs INTs
Matthew Stafford 22/33 187 1 0
Rushing Att Yds Avg TDs
Darrell Henderson 4 16 4 0
Cooper Kupp 2 10 5 0
Malcolm Brown 5 10 2 0
Matthew Stafford 2 -1 -0.5 1
Receiving Rec Tgt Yds TDs
Cooper Kupp 8 12 79 1
Allen Robinson 5 7 54 0
Tyler Higbee 2 6 15 0
Darrell Henderson 2 2 14 0
Ben Skowronek 1 1 10 0
Punting No Avg I20 Lg
Riley Dixon 5 50.6 1 58
Kickoff Returns Yds Avg TDs Lg
Brandon Powell 21 21 0 21
Defense T-A Sck INTs FF
Leonard Floyd 4-5 2 0 0
Aaron Donald 4-3 0 0 0
Taylor Rapp 4-3 0 0 0
Bobby Wagner 4-1 0 0 0
Nick Scott 3-5 0 0 0
Ernest Jones 3-4 0 0 0
A'Shawn Robinson 2-1 0 0 0
Greg Gaines 2-1 1 0 0
Jalen Ramsey 1-4 0 0 1
Justin Hollins 1-0 0 0 0
Jake Gervase 1-0 0 0 0
Christian Rozeboom 1-0 0 0 0
Terrell Lewis 1-0 0 0 0

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