1,852 articles listed
  • By Richard Madrid
    6 hours ago
    This week is a two-part look at how Kyle Shanahan uses the run-pass option (part one) and how he uses the running game to set up the RPO and take advantage of the aggressive pursuit of opposing defenses (part two). Since the 2017 season, much talk has centered around the use of the "run-pass option" (RPO) in the NFL, especially since the Philadelphia Eagles used it heavily in their Super Bowl run. Commentators and fans alike have called it out with an enthusiastic zeal, mainly because in some cases it's easy to spot and it's a play that has more success than not. Last week in a response to a question from 49ers beat writer Grant Cohn about using RPOs in the red zone more,...
  • By Bobby Horne
    Sep 17, 2018 at 3:19 PM
    After recovering from a torn Achilles suffered in 2017, it has taken only two weeks for the NFL to see that former All-Pro Cornerback Richard Sherman is back to his old self. The San Francisco 49ers have faced off against two noteworthy quarterbacks, Minnesota Vikings QB Kirk Cousins in Week 1 and Detroit Lions QB Matt Stafford in Week 2. Coming off a major injury such as a torn Achilles, one would think that would be grounds for being tested early and often. It has been quite the opposite. Sherman has been targeted a mere five times in two games. Among those targets only two of them were completed for a total gain of 28 yards. It's safe to say that QBs are scared to look his way. This has come against wide receivers like Adam Thielen,...
  • By Anwar Jamison
    Sep 17, 2018 at 9:09 AM
    When Richard Sherman signed a 3-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers in March, only days after being released by the Seattle Seahawks, the move didn't garner as much attention as it would have under normal circumstances. The 4-time All-Pro has consistently proven to be the best cornerback in the NFL, or Top 3 at worst depending on who's judging, but was recovering from surgery on his right Achilles, which he tore in November. In March, he had a minor surgery on his left Achilles as well. Concerns about his ability to fully recover while playing the demanding cornerback position significantly lowered expectations for his 2018 campaign. After two weeks of play, those concerns have been dispelled. Sherman has rarely been targeted in the first two games against the...
  • By Peter Panacy
    Sep 16, 2018 at 5:59 PM
    The San Francisco 49ers managed to hold on to beat the Detroit Lions 30-27 in Week 2, stopping a fourth-quarter surge by quarterback Matthew Stafford and Co. Overall, let's take a position-by-position look from the Niners' perspective. Well, the San Francisco 49ers could have easily been 0-2 on the young season. And while their 30-27 win over the Detroit Lions got the Niners back to the .500 mark in 2018, the Lions' fourth-quarter surge easily could have resulted in a second consecutive loss for head coach Kyle Shanahan and Co. All one needs to do is look at quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's fourth-quarter would-be interception that was negated by a Detroit penalty. San Francisco hung on to win in Week 2. And the Niners could have won their Week 1...
  • By Peter Panacy
    Sep 16, 2018 at 10:13 AM
    The San Francisco 49ers prepare for their 2018 home opener against the Detroit Lions, looking to pull off their first victory of the season. If it happens, these three factors will need to go the Niners' way. On a positive note, the San Francisco 49ers could have won a game they, for all intents and purposes, shouldn't have. This, of course, was their Week 1 24-16 loss on the road versus the Minnesota Vikings -- a team many peg to represent the NFC in Super Bowl LIII. But the Niners lost, are now at 0-1 on the young season and are home to host the also-winless Detroit Lions in Week 2. Both the 49ers and Lions had their share of mistake-riddled football last week. San Francisco quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo tossed three interceptions in...
  • By Nicholas McGee
    Sep 14, 2018 at 7:45 PM
    When the 49ers hired Chris Kiffin as a pass-rush specialist in the offseason, he spoke of improving San Francisco's pressure rate and measly sack numbers by building "a trap" for opposing quarterbacks. Back in May, Kiffin, per The Sacramento Bee, said of the 2017 pass rush: "A big thing I saw was guys not necessarily rushing together. You can't look at it as four individual rushers. It's really, you're rushing as one. If we can get that fixed, the pass rush improves." Kiffin spoke of his desire to use DeForest Buckner, clearly the star of San Francisco's stacked interior defensive line, as the focal point of his trap, adding: "I think we have to build...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Sep 13, 2018 at 8:09 PM
    Fortune may favor the bold, but it does not often guarantee David beating Goliath. Last Sunday, the San Francisco 49ers' offensive line failed to create running lanes or protect quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. The 49ers averaged 3.6 yards-per-carry on 25 attempts, for a low sum of 90 yards rushing. The 49ers' pass blocking looked more like a pasta colander, allowing four hits, 16 hurries, 21 pressures, and one sack. Indeed, the 49ers' offensive line received poor marks from Pro Football Focus. The team was dead last in pass blocking efficiency with a 71.1 grade and ranked 26th in run blocking with a 52.3 mark. Keep in mind the Vikings' run defense and pass rush are among the best in the NFL....
  • By Winston Chung
    Sep 13, 2018 at 8:03 AM
    The San Francisco 49ers need to shake off mistakes from an eight point loss at the Vikings last Sunday in anticipation of hosting the Detroit Lions in their 2018 home opener. Here we discuss the odds and analysis from a betting perspective. When: Sunday, September 16th, 1:05pm PST (FOX) Where: Levi's Stadium, Santa Clara, California Odds: 49ers -6, total at 47.5 Detroit Lions The Lions are coming off an absolute throttling by the New York Jets in prime time. We had anticipated that Lions head coach Matt Patricia might not live up to expectations but did not anticipate how lost he and his team might appear, nor did we expect Matt Stafford to throw four interceptions in a dismal...
  • By Richard Madrid
    Sep 12, 2018 at 7:03 AM
    Today we look at Jimmy Garoppolo's performance in the overall context of the offense against the Vikings in Week One. The 49ers offense in general, and quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in particular, had a wild ride of ups and downs against what is possibly the NFL's number one defense in the Minnesota Vikings. Garoppolo finished the game 15/33 for 261 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. At first glance it would appear the blame could be pinned on him and him alone, after all, one of his interceptions went for a pick-six. Heading into the game, though, the 49ers were without running back Jerick McKinnon (who's done for the season too) and lost receiver Marquise Goodwin for most of the game, severely limiting their options on offense by not having a...
  • By Nicholas McGee
    Sep 11, 2018 at 5:15 PM
    For all the reasons to be encouraged by the San Francisco 49ers' season-opening defeat to the Minnesota Vikings, the fact that they were unable to take advantage of opportunities to put themselves in a winning position effectively leaves their hopes of a playoff berth in the balance heading into a Week 2 clash with the Detroit Lions. That may seem like an outlandish claim after one game, and one which the Niners had a chance to tie on the final drive against a team many perceive as a Super Bowl favorite. However, the correlation between going 0-2 and missing the playoffs is clear. Per Optimum Scouting's Justis Mosqueda, since 2009 only six (8.5%) of the 77...
  • By Peter Panacy
    Sep 9, 2018 at 3:46 PM
    The San Francisco 49ers started off their 2018 regular-season campaign with a 24-16 loss on the road to the Minnesota Vikings. Despite the defeat, there are some positive takeaways for head coach Kyle Shanahan and Co. If the 2015 or 2016 San Francisco 49ers had played this Week 1 bout against a Super Bowl-contending Minnesota Vikings squad with the same context, the Niners would have been blown out by 20-plus points by halftime. So the fact head coach Kyle Shanahan's squad was within one score in the waning minutes of their eventual 24-16 loss to Minnesota to kick off the 2018 campaign has to be a good thing, right? After all, despite the Vikings seemingly dominating the action at the line of scrimmage and within the secondary, the 49ers were able to hang...
  • By Peter Panacy
    Sep 9, 2018 at 7:50 AM
    The San Francisco 49ers open up their 2018 regular season with a road contest against the Minnesota Vikings. Let's look at five storylines you'll want to pay attention to during the game. As Zain Naqvi and I pointed out on the latest 49ers Webzone No Huddle podcast, the San Francisco 49ers might as well have arguably their toughest challenge of the 2018 season right out of the gate. This is, of course, the Niners' Week 1 bout with the Minnesota Vikings -- a likely NFC Championship contender this year after finishing last year with a 13-3 record and a trip to the same game last season. Minnesota finished with the NFL's top defense, both in terms of points and yards allowed, and some could argue this side of the ball got...
  • By Nicholas McGee
    Sep 9, 2018 at 5:39 AM
    The San Francisco 49ers start an extremely intriguing 2018 season on Sunday when they take on the Minnesota Vikings. It will be a huge challenge against a team many view as Super Bowl contenders. It will also be the first game of the 49ers' Super Bowl window. While many expect the Niners to contend for the playoffs in 2018, nobody is tipping them to be in a position to challenge to reach Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta. Yet the second Jimmy Garoppolo signed his five-year, $137.5 million deal, the the 49ers' Super Bowl window was open. There is a consensus in the modern NFL that the biggest asset a team can have is a quarterback on a rookie contract. The 49ers do not have that. What they do have is a quarterback unbeaten in seven starts and a host of players at...
  • By Richard Madrid
    Sep 8, 2018 at 12:16 PM
    All season long, we'll be covering various 49ers quarterback opponents in this space. This week is week one opponent Kirk Cousins, quarterback of the Minnesota Vikings. In 2012, the Redskins drafted quarterback Robert Griffin III of Baylor University with the 2nd overall pick after trading up with the Rams. Later in the same draft, the Redskins drafted Kirk Cousins of Michigan State University in the 4th round, 102nd overall. The move shocked observers but felt right to the Shanahans, both Mike and his son Kyle, the head coach and offensive...
  • By Anwar Jamison
    Sep 7, 2018 at 9:02 AM
    The season-ending ACL injury suffered by 49ers top free agent acquisition Jerick McKinnon put a damper on the enthusiasm of a fan base starved for a winning team, and understandably so. Despite the fact that McKinnon has never truly been the featured back on his team, and only posted a 3.8 yards per carry average last season, head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch told everyone how important he was going to be to this offense and demonstrated their faith in him by making him one of the highest-paid running backs in the league. Therefore, everyone took their word for it because they are both on a short list of the most respected football minds in the NFL, especially Shanahan's. The apparent silver lining in these conversations has been Alfred Morris. Signed by...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Sep 6, 2018 at 7:32 PM
    San Francisco 49er fans across the globe have suffered an arduous nine months. The team finished the 2017 season winning five straight games, giving the Faithful an injection of pure hope into the main arterial. The 49ers made a series of moves to improve on offense and defense, with the goal of extending last year's winning streak, and quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's undefeated record, well into the 2018 season. Indeed, this year's team has the tools and talent to post a winning record. The group that's been overlooked is the men who make up the defensive line. After the roster moves, it's clear the 49ers do not have a weak link among these warriors. I'm also happy to see rookie Mike linebacker Fred Warner get his first NFL start this Sunday. With the defensive...
  • By Winston Chung
    Sep 6, 2018 at 9:11 AM
    The San Francisco 49ers begin their 2018 campaign by traveling to Minnesota to face the defending NFC North Champion Vikings. Jimmy Garoppolo will make his first Week 1 start in the red and gold and Kirk Cousins will be making his first start as a member of the Purple People Eaters. Here we will discuss the odds and analysis from a betting perspective. When: Sunday, September 9th at 10:00am PST Where: U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, Minnesota Odds: Vikings -6.5, total at 46 Minnesota Vikings It's understandable that the Vikings are expected to win by more than a field goal here, as they were one game away from making the Super Bowl last season and return an elite defense....
  • By Bobby Horne
    Sep 6, 2018 at 9:09 AM
    The 2018 NFL regular season is finally here. In just a few days we will be watching games that actually matter with the best players on the field. Excitement is at a high level within the 49ers fan base. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo ended 2017 on a five game win streak and looked as advertised during the preseason. With that being said, here are five bold predictions for the season ahead that will hopefully escalate your excitement: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports 1. Jimmy Garoppolo will throw for over 4,500 yards and be in the MVP race: I did say these were "bold" predictions, right? With the arm talent,...
  • By Chaz Inouye
    Aug 31, 2018 at 5:38 PM
    One of the most notable draft picks from 2017, running back Joe Williams, was cut by the team today in just his second season with the 49ers. Williams spent all of 2017 on IR due to an "ankle injury" and was projected to make a run at a roster spot early in the off-season. The selection of Williams in last years' draft was put into the spotlight due to several reasons. Peter King, a prominent writer for Sports Illustrated at the time, documented his take on the 49ers' draft as a guest from inside the teams' draft war room. One of the main stories that King chronicled was the selection of Joe Williams. What came out of the story was how enamored Kyle Shanahan was with Williams. It was perceived that Williams was the one guy who Coach Shanahan wanted on Day 3 of...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Aug 29, 2018 at 3:46 PM
    The third preseason game is when we get more than just a glimpse into the looming regular season. Starters play more snaps, which means we get to watch 30 minutes of quality football. Plus, we discover the players who may have a significant role for the team this fall. Rookie linebacker Fred Warner had an excellent first start at linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers last Saturday and ended the afternoon with a team-leading five tackles. Good linebackers have aggression weaved into the microscopic strands of their DNA. Great linebackers, on the other hand, balance the rage with grace, patience, and brains. Fred Warner has the tools to be an exceptional linebacker for the 49ers, and he displayed the gifts he brings to the defense and the team on the...
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