The San Francisco 49ers got their season started off with a bang on Sunday, with an impressive 30-22 win over the Green Bay Packers. We've got a recap up already, but I wanted to get some notes up prior to an in-depth recap tomorrow. There's a whole, whole lot to take from this game after months without the NFL. But what's the biggest takeaway?
Sure, the defense sort of crumbled near the end of the game, giving up big pass play after big pass play, but earlier in the game, they were absolutely fantastic. Not only that, but the rush defense was really up to par, not letting Cedric Benson get anywhere. While there's going to be a lot to complain about, the biggest takeaway is that there was more good than there was bad.
And in the NFL, you take what you can get. Here's some thoughts on the game.
- Randy Moss looked like ... well, he looked like he's not as old as he is. We'll see where he's at halfway through the season, but he showed that he can still run, he can still catch, and he still has to be accounted for on the football field.
- The offensive line looked about as good as we could expect: average. Alex Boone didn't have any big mistakes, but guys like Joe Staley and Jonathan Goodwin didn't have great games. Staley's second half was much better than his first, though.
- Alex Smith continues to let the game slow down around him. He's not hitting the huge plays yet, but he seems to make much better and quicker decisions when it comes to the fast routes. A season ago, receivers would get a small window of opportunity, and Smith wouldn't fire. He did that on Sunday against the Packers.
- Surprised by the amount of passing plays? If you read our previews prior to the the game, you shouldn't be. This was always going to be a test for the wide receivers to see what they're made of early and often. They passed with flying colors.
- Didn't get to see much of the 49ers' best player in this one: Andy Lee!
- The referees were just as bad as advertised. They picked up a flag on a clear illegal block in the back on a Green Bay punt return touchdown, and missed a big pass interference call. Plus they got the wrong number wrong like five times. Just a poor, poor showing that almost cost San Francisco the game.
- Over at Niners Nation, I talked about some players who needed big games. Among them was NaVorro Bowman. With his fourth quarter interception ... he got it.
- Surprisingly quiet game from the 49ers defensive line, which is disappointing, given the lack of ... star power on the Green Bay offensive line. Neither Justin Smith nor Ray McDonald were terribly impressive.
- Jim Harbaugh is going to have a heart attack before the season is done.