The San Francisco 49ers took care of business Sunday afternoon, as they defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers by a final score of 33-14. The 49ers improve to 10-4 with the win. This win combined with the Philadelphia Eagles loss to the Minnesota Vikings leaves San Francisco needing an Arizona Cardinals win to secure a playoff berth this week.
At times this was very much a tale of two halves. The 49ers offense looked sharp in the first half, as Colin Kaepernick threw two touchdown passes and looked sharp when scrambling. The 49ers took a 17-0 as the defense was shutting down the Bucs offense, and looked prepared to run away with this. And then suddenly the Bucs offense figured things out. Mike Glennon showed some very solid skills as he led a two-minute drill to cut the lead to 17-7. The Bucs added a touchdown in the fourth quarter and found themselves only trailing 20-14.
That was when the 49ers were able to put the game away. The 49ers ran off ten minutes and while they settled for a field goal, it left the Bucs with their back against the wall. And that might be why they did what they did next. The Bucs ran a kick out of the end zone, and decided to run a reverse. The Bucs fumbled the reverse, and Kendall Hunter grabbed the ball and got into the end zone for the score. That put the 49ers up 30-14 and the game was, for all intents and purposes, over.
There are plenty of stories, but first off, big congratulations to Frank Gore, who surpassed 1,000 rushing yards for the seventh time in his career. He finished the game with 86 yards. He had a lot of tough short runs, but also showed off his moves throughout. It's a performance that won't be remembered by most people, but he churned out some key yards.
On the other side of the ball, it was an odd dichotomy for the defense. They were dominant in the first half, until that final Bucs drive of the half. The Bucs went to hurry up in the second half and the 49ers couldn't quite adjust. They stepped up late to end it, but as with some of what we saw on offense, there will be some helpful film to look at to improve.
The 49ers head home in Week 16 to face the Atlanta Falcons on Monday Night Football. The second half of today's game was pretty physical, so the extra day of rest is a nice little addition. For now, we get to wait and see what the afternoon games bring us for the 49ers playoff positioning.