Early on Wednesday, Fooch took a look at Ahmad Brooks and his three sacks with gifs provided by an alarmingly handsome gentleman. They were pretty great sacks and I'm a big fan of Brooks when he's not offsides (roughly 50 percent of the time give or take). But those weren't the only sacks that occurred on Sunday.
There was one other on Cam Newton by Patrick Willis ... and six others on Colin Kaepernick by various members of the Carolina defense. Perhaps it was my arrogance and hubris that forced their hand, or perhaps they've (somehow) never heard of me and are just genuinely good, but whatever the reason: they were excellent on Sunday.
And so since we break down Brooks' sacks, we must break down the sacks surrendered by the 49ers as well. It's not pretty, and since there's six, we're going to be quick about it. Let's jump in.
First Quarter: 1st and 10 at SF 24, Colin Kapernick sacked at SF 20 for -4 yards (D. Edwards)
Things went pretty catastrophically wrong from the onset of this play. Colin Kaepernick takes the snap, looks to his first option, quickly checks for his second and probably want to hit fullback Bruce Miller on the right side but he sees Joe Staley and Vernon Davis scrambling backward out of the corner of his eye and tries to step up, but steps into a sack by the man who beat Alex Boone one on one.
In my opinion, Kaepernick didn't even see the guy that Davis couldn't hold and Staley didn't even make contact with, he just saw his two blindside guys running to what he presumed (correctly) to be a Carolina pass rusher. That's not a fault of Kaepernick's, mind you, just a note. It's unclear if Staley totally whiffs on his guy, Jonathan Goodwin takes him, or if he was expecting another player to blitz.
Second Quarter: 1st and 10 at SF 32, Colin Kaepernick sacked at SF 18 for -14 yards (A. Klein)
There's really not a whole lot to be said about this play. It's play action but by the time Kaepernick starts rolling outside he's already being pursued by the defender. The play might have worked a lot better if it were an actual run play.
Second Quarter: 1st and 10 at SF 32, Colin Kaepernick sacked at SF 24 for -8 yards (M. Mitchell, C. Johnson)
The 49ers are expecting a lot more guy to come up on the left side, as evidenced by the offensive linemen wondering why there's nobody to block. The misdirection is plenty long enough for the man in the secondary to come through and get Kaepernick cleanly. Beautifully designed play by the Panthers, especially if it was a look they gave that caused the 49ers to put four guys on two Carolina players.
Fourth Quarter: 3rd and 25 at SF 29, Colin Kaepernick sacked at SF 25 for -4 yards (C. Johnson)
Here's exactly what you cannot do on a four-man rush: get totally blown apart. Mike Iupati gets his block and passes him off to Jonathan Goodwin, who holds fine enough. Alex Boone also holds his guy well. Staley struggles with his man but eventually gets around and gets his guy to the ground. The one who struggles is Anthony Davis. He's beaten immediately, and Kaepernick is immediately in scrambling mode. Kaepernick didn't really have a chance there.
Forth Quarter: 1st and 10 at SF 15, Colin Kaepernick sacked at SF 6 for -9 yards (L. Kuechly)
I'm not sure if Luke Kuechly is just spying on this play -- it would make sense to keep him in spy for much of the game given Kaepernick's talents on the ground, as the 49ers do with Patrick Willis/NaVorro Bowman given their range -- or if there is a delayed blitz, but when he makes the decision to go, it's immediately clear it was the right one. Anthony Davis and Alex Boone handle the outside man, but there's a whole lot of confusion on the left side. Mike Iupati never sees Kuechly, Boone rushes in to help, Frank Gore gets a piece of somebody, Staley is occupied and ... it just looks like an easy sack for Kuechly. Just a bad play in general, really.
Fourth Quarter: 1st and 10 at SF 20, Colin Kaepernick sacked at SF 14 for -6 yards (G. Hardy)
Not a whole lot to say about this one. There was a minute to go and the 49ers were clearly going to lose. Obviously, allowing a sack here is unforgivable because it killed any chance of a comeback but oh well. Both Staley and Davis lose their men around the outside and that's all it takes for the play to breakdown.