Niners Notch First Victory, Beat Raiders 17-9 In Battle Of The Bay

We provide a running breakdown of the 49ers-Raiders Battle of the Bay leading up to recaps of the matchup. For more Raiders information check out Silver and Black Pride. For more 49ers information check out Niners Nation.

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23 Total Updates since October 12, 2010
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Jason Campbell and Zach Miller Set Up Raiders Field Goal, Frank Gore and Vernon Davis Respond With Niners TD

After Campbell and Miller hooked up on two crucial passes to set up a Sebastian Janikowski field goal, Frank Gore galloped down into the Raiders red zone and set up a quick Alex Smith misdirection throw to Vernon Davis to give the Niners an eight point lead. San Francisco looks like they’ve established control of this game; can they hold on?.

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Alex Smith Hooks Up With Michael Crabtree, Niners Take First Lead

In an eight minute, 91 yard drive that might turn around the fortunes of San Francisco’s season, Smith found Crabtree in the end zone in single coverage (why would Oakland single-cover Crabtree?). The Niners overcame a questionable intentional grounding call and Smith converted on 2nd and 20 as the third quarter ended. Can Oakland respond?

Check more updates on the gamethreads at Niners Nation and Silver & Black Pride.

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49ers, Raiders Drowning In Battle of the Bay

Thirteen first downs, ten punts, fifteen penalties. What a dogfight. Or a fight for the dogs.

Currently the Niners have a better passing game than the Raiders, which is kind of like saying Brett Favre is more well-respected by women than Ben Roethlisberger. Alex Smith is being continuously booed by the San Francisco faithful (9 for 23 for 108 yards). Oakland has had a better ground game, but Jason Campbell is only 5 of 11 for 28 yards and an interception.

Roger Goddell is considering cancelling this game on account of "I CAN’T WATCH THIS ANYMORE." Holy horrendous Batman.

Check more updates on the gamethreads at Niners Nation and Silver & Black Pride.

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49ers-Raiders: Aubrayo Franklin May Very Well Be The Key

Clearly our goal thus far has been to beat the Raiders and 49ers running backs into the ground. However, as Richard mentioned, getting the running game going is key for both offenses. The team with more success on the ground will probably end up winning this year's Battle of the Bay.

Raiders running back Darren McFadden has set his odds of playing this week at 50%. The Raiders have had success in the running game without McFadden, but I do think his absence would certainly help the 49ers battle some of those outside runs. However, if the Raiders are going to run it up the middle behind their guards, this 49ers fan point to one particular key for the 49ers defense to have success: Get Aubrayo Franklin going!

Franklin sat out most of training camp waiting to sign his franchise tender and the coaches have expressed the belief that his absence from camp has caught up with him and he's not quite 100%. The problem for the 49ers is that Franklin's role as the nose tackle in their 3-4 is an essential part of Patrick Willis' own performance. Willis is an athletic beast, but if the nose tackle isn't opening up some holes, Willis can't burst through to make plays. He'll get tackles but they'll come further into the second level of the 49ers defense.

The 49ers are currently in the middle of the pack when it comes to adjusted line yards for their defensive line. While they're middle of the pack in most areas of the run, it shouldn't surprise folks that they rank 5th overall in second level yards. Second level yards are yards gained between 5 and 10 yards past the line of scrimmage, divided by total running back carries. One would imagine having Patrick Willis and Takeo Spikes in the second level is a big reason for the 49ers success in that area of the field. While Franklin's struggles hurt near the line, that second level is all Willis and Spikes.

Of course, the 49ers also rank 18th in open field yards, which are yards gained by running backs at least 10 yards past the line of scrimmage, divided by total running back carries. So basically, once a back gets past Willis and Spikes, it's open season on the 49ers secondary.

Seeing as we've beaten this dead horse into the ground, we'll be back in a bit with a non-running back matchup!

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