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Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

49ers fight off Rams for 30-23 road victory

Sep 17, 2023 at 4:24 PM

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1st 2nd 3rd 4th Tot
SF 7 10 3 10 30
LA 3 14 0 6 23

The San Francisco 49ers continued their winning ways over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, riding a 13-6 edge in the second half to a 30-23 win at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California.

The win was the ninth consecutive regular season victory over the Rams for the 49ers, who moved to 2-0 on the season. Quarterback Brock Purdy finished with 206 yards on 17-of-25 passing with a rushing touchdown, while running back Christian McCaffrey ran for 116 yards and one touchdown on 20 carries. Wide receiver Deebo Samuel chipped in six catches for 63 yards along with five carries for 38 yards and a touchdown.

Quarterback Matthew Stafford threw for 307 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions in the loss. Wide receiver Puka Nacua caught 15 of Stafford's passes for 147 yards.

First Half

The 49ers picked up where they left off after their 30-7 win over the Steelers in Week 1, driving 75 yards in 11 plays on their opening possession to take a 7-0 lead on a 14-yard scoring run from Christian McCaffrey. Purdy was 6-of-6 on the opening drive, including a 13-yard strike to wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk on a 3rd-and-7, then McCaffrey finished the job to put the 49ers up at the 8:25 mark in the first quarter.

The Rams answered with a scoring possession of their own on an 11-play, 50-yard drive that took 6:31 off the clock and culminated with a 43-yard field goal from kicker Brett Maher to cut the 49ers' lead to 7-3. Stafford efficiently drove the Rams downfield before being set back by a first down holding penalty at the 49ers' 27-yard line, which eventually resulted in the Rams having to settle for the field goal attempt.

It didn't take the 49ers long to get back into the red zone, courtesy of a 51-yard run from McCaffrey that moved the ball to 13-yard line. But after a short run from McCaffrey, a strange second down play where McCaffrey advanced a deflected snap for a three-yard gain and an incomplete pass on third down, the 49ers elected to attempt a 27-yard field goal, which kicker Jake Moody connected on to open up a 10-3 early second quarter lead.

Moody followed his field goal with an out-of-bounds kick on the kickoff, giving the Rams the ball at their own 40-yard line. The Rams tied the game in a hurry from there, putting together an eight-play, 60-yard drive that took 3:43 off the clock and ended when Stafford connected with running back Kyren Williams for a six-yard touchdown.

The 49ers moved the ball past midfield on the next possession before being forced to punt, then the Rams put together the longest drive of the first half -- a 13-play, 88-yard possession that put them up 17-10 after a 4-yard touchdown run by Williams. The 49ers called a timeout before the touchdown, which gave them 1:45 to work with before the break.

That turned out to be enough time for the 49ers to tie the game, with an assist from the Rams. Purdy drove the 49ers to the Rams' 20-yard line with 17 seconds remaining in the half, then a pass interference call on cornerback D Kendrick put the 49ers at the 1-yard line with 11 seconds remaining. The 49ers faced a 2nd-and-Goal from the 1-yard line with one second left, but instead of playing it safe and going for a field goal, the 49ers decided to go for 6 and were successful after a sneak by Purdy into the end zone as time expired. The point after from Moody tied the game at 17 heading into halftime.

Second Half

The teams exchanged punts to start the second half, then the Rams put together a 7-play, 41-yard drive that moved the ball into 49ers territory. But on a 2nd-and-16 from the 31-yard line, the 49ers came up with the first turnover of the game when cornerback Isaiah Oliver snagged a dropped pass off the hands of Williams at the 28-yard line. The interception was the first for Stafford in 163 attempts.

The 49ers moved across midfield on completions to Aiyuk and tight end George Kittle, then their drive stalled after two short gains from McCaffrey and an incomplete deep pass intended for Deebo Samuel. The 49ers called on Moody to attempt a field goal, which he hit from 57 yards out to give the 49ers a 20-17 lead with just over a minute remaining in the third quarter.

The Rams were held to a three-and-out on the next possession due in part to a third-down sack from linebacker Fred Warner, then the 49ers stretched their lead to 27-17 after a seven-play, 74-yard drive that ended in an 11-yard touchdown pass from Purdy to Samuel. Purdy connected with Samuel for 16 yards and wide receiver Jauan Jennings for 31 yards earlier in the possession, then Samuel showed some fancy footwork to finish the drive with his first touchdown of the season.

The Rams cut the lead to 27-20 on the next possession with a 48-yard field goal from Maher, then the 49ers punted after a three-and-out with 5:29 remaining. The Rams took over at their own 25-yard line after a touchback, but not long after that came Stafford's second interception of the game, this one to cornerback Deommodore Lenoir. Lenoir returned the interception to the 15-yard line with 4:48 remaining.

The 49ers ran the clock down to 2:59 while adding a 26-yard field goal from Moody for a 30-20 lead. The defense continued to take over for the 49ers on the next possession, forcing the Rams to a turnover on downs at their own 38-yard line with the help of a fourth down stop by Oliver.

The 49ers ran the clock under two minutes after the turnover but moved out of scoring range due to 25 yards in penalties. The Rams took over at their own 30 following a punt and a fair catch interference call on 49ers cornerback Tre Swilling, then moved down to the 49ers' 20-yard line with four seconds remaining. The Rams chose to add a 38-yard field goal from Maher as time expired, ending the game with a 30-23 score.

Game Notes: The 49ers now carry a series lead of 78-68-3 against the Rams... McCaffrey's touchdown in the first quarter extended his scoring streak to 11 consecutive season games with a touchdown... Kittle set a 49ers franchise record on Sunday, reaching 400 career receptions in 84 games. The previous record was 85, held by Jerry Rice and Roger Craig... With his 15 receptions on the day, Rams rookie receiver Puka Nacua set an NFL rookie record for the most receptions in a single game and the most over the first two games of a player's career (25). Former 49er Earl Cooper previously held the two-game record with 19... The 49ers were 7.5-point favorites in the game... This week will bring a quick turnaround for the 49ers, who host the New York Giants (1-1) on Thursday Night Football (8:15 p.m. ET/5:15 p.m. PT, Prime Video). The Rams take to the road next week to face the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Football (September 25, 8:15 p.m. ET/5:15 p.m. PT).

SF Team Stats LA
206 Passing Yards 297
159 Rushing Yards 89
206 Total Yards 297
8.24 Avg Yards per Pass 5.58
5.68 Avg Yards per Run 4.05
0 Fumbles Lost 0
0 Int Thrown 2
1 Sacks Allowed 1
00:26:49 Time of Pos 00:33:11
6 Penalties 6

49ers Player Stats
Passing Cmp/Att Yds TDs INTs
Brock Purdy 17/25 206 0 0
Rushing Att Yds Avg TDs
Christian McCaffrey 20 116 5.8 1
Deebo Samuel 5 38 7.6 1
Brock Purdy 3 5 1.7 1
Receiving Rec Tgt Yds TDs
Deebo Samuel 6 9 63 0
Jauan Jennings 2 3 51 0
Brandon Aiyuk 3 6 43 0
George Kittle 3 3 30 0
Christian McCaffrey 3 3 19 0
Fumbles Fum Lost
Deebo Samuel 1 0
Brock Purdy 1 0
Kicking FG Att Lg XP
Jake Moody 3 3 57 3
Punting No Avg I20 Lg
Mitch Wishnowsky 4 41.5 2 67
Punt Returns Att Avg TDs Lg
Ray-Ray McCloud 1 13 0 13
Defense T-A Sck INTs FF
Deommodore Lenoir 9-1 0 1 0
Isaiah Oliver 6-3 0 1 0
Talanoa Hufanga 5-3 0 0 0
Arik Armstead 4-1 0 0 0
Tashaun Gipson 3-2 0 0 0
Ambry Thomas 3-0 0 0 0
Nick Bosa 2-1 0 0 0
Dre Greenlaw 12-5 0 0 0
Fred Warner 11-2 1 0 0
Charvarius Ward 10-2 0 0 0
Javon Hargrave 1-1 0 0 0
Javon Kinlaw 1-0 0 0 0
Drake Jackson 1-0 0 0 0

Rams Player Stats
Passing Cmp/Att Yds TDs INTs
Matthew Stafford 34/55 307 1 2
Rushing Att Yds Avg TDs
Kyren Williams 14 52 3.7 1
Matthew Stafford 4 17 4.3 0
Ben Skowronek 1 11 11 0
Tutu Atwell 1 5 5 0
Puka Nacua 2 4 2 0
Receiving Rec Tgt Yds TDs
Puka Nacua 15 20 147 0
Tutu Atwell 7 9 77 0
Kyren Williams 6 10 48 1
Tyler Higbee 3 7 12 0
Ben Skowronek 1 1 10 0
Van Jefferson 1 4 9 0
Ronnie Rivers 1 1 4 0
Kicking FG Att Lg XP
Brett Maher 3 3 48 2
Punting No Avg I20 Lg
Ethan Evans 2 47.5 1 72
Punt Returns Att Avg TDs Lg
Kyren Williams 1 11 0 11
Defense T-A Sck INTs FF
Jordan Fuller 7-4 0 0 1
Russ Yeast 6-4 0 0 0
Michael Hoecht 6-2 0 0 0
Christian Rozeboom 5-4 0 0 0
Jonah Williams 5-3 0 0 0
Byron Young 5-2 1 0 0
Cobie Durant 4-2 0 0 0
Derion Kendrick 3-1 0 0 0
Ahkello Witherspoon 2-1 0 0 0
Bobby Brown 2-1 0 0 0
Kobie Turner 2-1 0 0 0
Quentin Lake 2-0 0 0 0
Ernest Jones 10-5 0 0 0
Larrell Murchison 1-1 0 0 0
John Johnson 1-0 0 0 0

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