The San Francisco 49ers put on a horrific showing on defense Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings, losing XX-XX to fall to 2-1 on the season. While many thought Minnesota's opening 16-play drive would be the exception to the rule, it turned out to be the defining trait of the game. Minnesota dumped their way to first down after first down, with Percy Harvin and Adrian Peterson having their way with what is supposed to be the NFL's best defense.
We'll have plenty of in-depth stuff in the coming days, but for now, how about some random notes from the game. These are things that I wrote while the game was going, so they're a little rough, but they're worth checking out. The 49ers are in a dangerous place right now, given relatively strong play from the rest of the NFC West.
Here's the notes below.
- The replacement referees set a new standard for terrible in the fist five minutes of the game. The worst: calling an illegal block in the back on the kicking team, which is nowhere in the NFL rulebooks.
- San Francisco gave up a touchdown on the opening drive ... which was a bad feeling I had coming into this. I said it'd be a stupid game: well there you have it. Aldon Smith played poorly on the touchdown play, letting up prematurely because he thought Dashon Goldson had stopped the play.
- If the 49ers have the best defense in the league, on average over the course of the season, Sunday's game against Minnesota was the negative outlier. They were just horrible.
- Kendall Hunter's dance moves behind the line of scrimmage is getting very tiring. He needs to make a cut and go with it. There was a run in the first quarter in which he switched directions when the other side was wide open for a run of 15+yards.
- The 49ers were fine on defense when they were in the nickel. But Aldon Smith was getting abused in pass coverage.
- They haven't quite perfected it yet, but San Francisco can be one of the deadliest play action teams in the league, especially when you factor in the myriad of personnel sets the 49ers have.
- The referees continued their horrible officiating all throughout the game. Definitely one of the worst officiated games this season.