The 49ers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs in using a formula that has become all too familiar since 2011. With a strong rushing attack, clutch passing and timely defense the 49ers improved to 3-2 on the season with the 22-17 victory. The win, coupled with an Arizona Cardinals loss in Denver cut the 49ers deficit to only one and a half games in the NFC West.

Let's get to the answers for the 5 burning questions that I asked on Saturday.

1) Is Frank The Tank back? - Yes

On Saturday I noted: "Since 2011, Gore has averaged 18.6 carries per game in 49ers victories. That number drops to only 11.6 carries in 49ers losses."

Gore finished the day with 18 carries for 107 yards. He churned out big run after big run and set the table for the offense from the outset with gains of 6 and 12 yards on his first two carries of the game. Throw in another 43 yards on 10 carries from rookie Carlos Hyde and the 49ers ground and pound offensive attack was back.

2) Will Ian Williams play? - Yes

Williams was in the starting lineup and played exactly half of the 49ers defensive snaps on Sunday, 26 out of 52, and finished with a quarterback hurry and a solo tackle.

Overall the 49ers defense went back to struggling a bit with pressuring the quarterback. Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith dropped back 32 times on Sunday and faced pressure on only 8 of those attempts. Part of this was due to Smith doing a good job of getting the ball out of his hands quickly, and some of it was due to poor play. The 49ers must get this improved before they head to Denver in two weeks.

Another bright spot on Sunday was the play of rookie Jimmie Ward. Ward has been the target of frustration by many fans and a few beat writers this season, but he finished yesterday giving up only 1 reception for 7 yards. Over the last two weeks Ward has allowed 4 receptions for a total of 24 yards. That's a good sign.

And how about Perrish Cox? After bouncing around for most of last year between various teams, he has been terrific to start the year. Through the first 5 weeks he has allowed a QB rating of 25.7 which is the second lowest in the NFL.

3) Will the 49ers be poor hosts to their old friends? - Yes

Although Alex Smith started off hot, the 49ers defense ultimately put the game away when Perrish Cox intercepted Smith. In fact, the interception came on the deepest pass Smith attempted all game, 23 yards.

Former 49ers first round draft bust A.J. Jenkins showed once again why the 49ers traded him last season. He finished the day with only a single reception for 3 yards.

The former 49er that was picked on the most though was 2013 7th round draft pick Marcus Cooper. Colin Kaepernick threw in Cooper's direction 9 times, more than any other member of the Chiefs secondary and had a QB rating of 113.7, and his only touchdown pass when doing so.

4) Can the 49ers contain Jamaal Charles? - Yes

With the exception of a 26 yard run in the 3rd quarter the 49ers defense did a nice job of containing Charles.

5) Can the 49ers put the special back in special teams? - Somewhat.

Anytime you get 5 field goals from your kicker the special teams is doing it's part. The only negative takeaway from Sunday when it comes to special teams was the play of the coverage units. Knile Davis ripped off a 34 yards kickoff return on his was to averaging 23.8 yards per attempt and De'Anthony Thomas pitched in with a 28 yard punt return as well.

Prediction Time:

49ers 23 Chiefs 10


49ers line grades courtesy of ProFootball Focus

Joe Staley = +7.3, +2.1 pass block, +4.9 run block
Mike Iupati = +1.5, -1.1 pass block, +3.4 run block
Daniel Kilgore = +.4, +.8 pass block, -.5 run block
Alex Boone = -3.0, -3.1 pass block, -.1 run block
Jonathan Martin = -1.2, -1.9 pass block, +.4 run block

Ray McDonald = +.6, -.5 pass rush, 1.0 run
Ian Williams = -.5, -.3 pass rush, -.3 run
Justin Smith = +2.9, -1.2 pass rush, +4.0 run
Ahmad Brooks = -1.8, -.1 pass rush, -.4 run
Aaron Lynch = +2.2, +.8 pass rush, +1.3 run

* Alex Boone has given up a sack each of the last 3 weeks, to go along with 6 quarterback hurries over that time.

* No play better exemplifies Frank Gore than his carry on the first play after the 2 minute warning in the second quarter. On an off tackle run to the left Gore is hit after gaining only 1 yard, but he puts his shoulder pads down and continues to push the pile for another 6 yards.

* Colin Kaepernick finished14-26 on the day, but 3 of his incompletions were thrown away to avoid a negative play. When you take out the throw away's Kaepernick was 14-23 on his aimed throws giving him a QB rating of 103.7.