The San Francisco 49ers and St. Louis Rams played to a 24-24 tie on Sunday at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, marking the NFL's first regular season tie in four years.
Placekickers David Akers and Greg Zuerlein each missed potential game-winning field goal attempts in overtime. Akers' 41-yard attempt with a little more than eight minutes remaining sailed wide left. Zuerlein initially made a 53-yard attempt on the ensuing possession, but the Rams were flagged for a delay of game penalty, and his follow-up 58-yard attempt missed right. Both teams' offenses had their drives stalled following the missed kicks before time eventually ran out.
The series of events leading up to the anticlimactic ending was not without drama. Trailing 17-7 entering the fourth quarter, the 49ers got back in the game by scoring two touchdowns in 19 seconds midway through the final stanza. Backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick found the end zone at the 8:48 mark to cut the deficit to three points, then Rams kick returner Isaiah Pead fumbled the ensuing kickoff, allowing the 49ers to score again at the 8:29 mark on Frank Gore’s 20-yard run. However, Sam Bradford’s last-minute touchdown pass to Austin Pettis to cap off a 14-play, 81-yard drive put the Rams back in the driver’s seat. Faced with an opportunity to be a hero, Kaepernick responded by marching his team 63 yards down the field, setting up Akers’ 33-yard field goal to send the game into overtime.
Stat of the game
Rams punter Johnny Hekker completed two passes for 40 yards as St. Louis successfully converted first downs on two fake punt attempts, one of which extended the team's game-winning drive.
Bradford completed 26 of 39 passes for 275 yards and two touchdowns. Those numbers could have been a lot bigger had Danny Amendola's 80-yard reception in overtime not been called back due to an illegal formation penalty.
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The 49ers were 13 1/2-point favorites over the Rams entering the game. It is safe to say that, with the tie, the Rams easily covered the spread.
San Francisco quarterback Alex Smith was knocked out of the game in the second quarter with a concussion. Smith ultimately finished the drive, throwing a touchdown pass to Michael Crabtree. However, he did not return after that.
St. Louis: Nov. 18 vs. New York Jets; San Francisco: Nov. 19 vs. Chicago Bears.