In the second to last week of the season, the San Francisco 49ers ended their 13-game losing streak by beating the Los Angeles Rams 22-21. The 49ers opened the season with a huge shutout victory against the Rams, and have been awful in almost every aspect since then. QB Colin Kaepernick finished with 28/38 with 266 yards, 2 touchdowns and a pick, while his rookie counterpart, QB Jared Goff finished 11/24 with a measly 90 yards, a touchdown, and 2 interceptions.
While a win is much needed, at least for a moral boost, the 49ers may have jeopardized their chances at the first overall draft pick. The Cleveland Browns got their first win of the season, moving them to 1-14. The 49ers, however, with a win today, maintain a 1-game lead over the Browns.
Even if you don’t believe in tanking, you have to wonder what the 49ers were thinking, considering that they desperately need the first pick with the way the season has gone.
The 49ers did not look great in the first half. They put together one successful drive (9:01 in the first) in the entire first half, as they were able to capitalize on Goff’s interception on the Rams’ first drive of the game.
Kaepernick’s 19-yard pass to RB Carlos Hyde capped off the scoring drive and the 49ers were on the board first, leading 7-0.
Los Angeles, however, countered back with a 1-yard rushing touchdown, courtesy of RB Todd Gurley. After Kaepernick threw an interceptions, WR Tayvon Austin needed just one play for a 30 yard touchdown run. The second quarter was filled with punts and dropped passes, as was expected from the 49ers and Rams at this stage of the season. At the half, the Rams led 14-7.
Early in the fourth quarter, the 49ers fumbled and the Rams recovered and punched it into the end zone on Goff’s first touchdown pass. With a 21-7 lead, it seemed the 49ers had been put away. On the next drive, however, Kaepernick’s legs reinvigorated the offense, as the 49ers marched down the field for 73 yards, culminating in a 13-yard Kaepernick run.
The 49ers once again put together another successful drive after the Rams punted, yet again. Kaepernick tossed a 10-yard touchdown pass to WR Rod Streater, and the 49ers trailed 21-20. Chip Kelly, in a gutsy decision, decided to go for two, and Kaepernick ran it into the end zone.
A win today is great news, like I mentioned earlier. The downside is that they are most likely not going to get the first pick in the draft. Does this really matter? They need help in literally every position.