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49ers secure bye week, finish season 13-3

Jan 1, 2012 at 1:20 PM


The San Francisco 49ers needed a victory to earn a first round bye in the playoffs and they got it. With their 34-27 victory over the St. Louis Rams, the 49ers finish the season with a 13-3 record, their best record since 1997. St. Louis falls to 2-14.

At the end, the game was more exciting than it needed to be. At one point with less than 5 minutes left in the fourth quarter, the 49ers had a 34-13 lead. That comfortable lead fell apart quickly after two quick Rams touchdowns brought them within a touchdown, but the 49ers were able to hold on for the win.

The victory means that the 49ers will have some time to rest and will not play in their first playoff game, a game that they will host against the strongest survivor of Wildcard Weekend, until the weekend of January 14.

Alex Smith passed for over 3,000 yards for the first time in his career completing 21 of 31 passes for 219 yards. Smith had a passing touchdown to Michael Crabtree and ran for another touchdown. Running back Frank Gore saw limited action as Kendall Hunter and Anthony Dixon combined for 97 rushing yards.

Due to injuries, the 49ers had receivers Michael Crabtree, who had 92 yards on nine receptions, and Brett Swain as their starters. Tight end Delanie Walker missed the game with a jaw injury and may miss the team's first playoff game as well.

Linebacker Patrick Willis played in his first game since injuring his hamstring on December 4.

The 49ers defense allowed their second rushing touchdown of the season, a run by Rams quarterback Kellen Clemens.

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