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San Francisco 49ers vs. Arizona Cardinals: A Prospector's Guide

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Oh hey, wait, there's still a game left to be played? Oh yea. The San Francisco 49ers host the Arizona Cardinals this Sunday in a divisional matchup that could have sizable implications in draft order. The two teams are tied at 5-10 along with four other teams with three 4-11 teams ahead of them. Although I don't think things will pan quite like 49ers fans may hope, the 49ers could conceivably move as high as the number two pick in the draft on Sunday. It would require a Cardinals win as well as seven 4-11 and 5-10 teams beating teams better than them. Don't hold your breath.

The worst part about this game is we'll be getting Chris Myers on play-by-play. He will be joined by Jim Mora (I'm assuming Jr.) and sideline reporter Nischelle Turner. For those wondering, this is indeed the bottom of the barrel Fox team (number 7 of 7). I'll actually be at the game so I won't have to listen to Myers work hard to express very little excitement.

The 49ers currently sit as six to seven point favorites and I'd imagine the money will continue coming in on their side. Of course, I don't know if this is a game anybody would really want to bet on. We're talking about a season finale that has no bearing on the playoffs, and in fact losing would be of greater benefit to each team. That certainly adds up to a reasonable bet!

Once again I've attached a prediction poll. Head after the jump for random tidbits about this matchup.

The 49ers will wrap up the 2010 regular season at home against the Arizona Cardinals. The Niners won the first matchup of the season at Arizona (11/29) on Monday Night Football, 27-6. San Francisco owns the overall series record vs. the Cardinals, 22-16, and are 12-8 when playing at Candlestick Park. The Niners have won three consecutive meetings and five of the past seven, dating back to 2007.

San Francisco's playoff hopes diminished at St. Louis last week as the Niners fell to the Rams, 25-17. WR Michael Crabtree notched 6 receptions for a career-high 122 yards and 1 TD, surpassing his previous career high of 105 yards vs. Philadelphia earlier this season (10/10). WR Ted Ginn registered a 78-yard punt return for a TD, his first TD as a Niner, and his first PR for a TD since 11/18/07 at Philadelphia. The punt return for a TD marked the first for the 49ers since WR Otis Amey notched a 75-yard PR for a TD vs. StL (9/11/05).

49ers-Cardinals Connections
- 49ers defensive coordinator Greg Manusky was a teammate of Cardinals assistant head coach/OL coach Russ Grimm with the Washington Redskins from 1988-91. Manusky played linebacker, while Grimm played offensive guard.

- 49ers tight ends coach Pete Hoener has had coaching stints with the Cardinals while they were in St. Louis (1978-84) and Arizona (2001-03).

- 49ers wide receivers coach Jerry Sullivan spent 3 seasons as the Cardinals offensive coordinator from 2001-03.

- 49ers offensive line coach Mike Solari held the same position while with the Phoenix Cardinals during the 1989 season.

- Cardinals defensive coordinator Bill Davis was the 49ers defensive coordinator from 2005-06.

CARDINALS-NOR CAL CONNECTIONS: Cardinals FB Reagan Mauia is a native of Lodi, CA ... Cardinals ILB Reggie Walker is a native of Sacramento, CA.

49ERS-ARIZONA CONNECTIONS: Assistant special teams coach Dave Fipp began his coaching career at the University of Arizona during the 2000 season ... Offensive Coordinator Mike Johnson played his college ball at ASU from 1985-86 ... 49ers asst. offensive line coach Ray Brown was a player for the St.Louis/ Phoenix Cardinals from 1986-88 ... 49ers LS Brian Jennings is a native of Mesa, AZ. He also played at Arizona State University ... 49ers WR Kyle Williams attended High School in Scottsdale, AZ and went to ASU.

FORMER CARDINALS: G Tony Wragge was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Cardinals in 2002. Wragge spent two seasons (2002-03) with Arizona.

VANDALIZED - 49ers G Mike Iupati and Cardinals WR Max Komar were teammates at the University of Idaho from 2006-08.

BAYOU BENGALS - 49ers DT Ricky Jean Francois and Cardinals WR Early Doucet were teammates at LSU from 2006-07.

MICHIGAN MEN - 49ers C David Baas, Cardinals DE/DT Alan Branch, DT Gabe Watson and WR Steve Breaston were all teammates at Michigan during the 2004 season.

GOOD "OLE" BOYS - 49ers LB Patrick Willis and Cardinals CB Trumaine McBride were teammates together at the University of Mississippi from 2004-06.

"THE" BUCKEYE BROTHERS - 49ers QB Troy Smith, WR Ted Ginn and Cardinals RB Beanie Wells were all teammates at The Ohio State University during the 2006 season.

PANTHER PRIDE - 49ers CB Shawntae Spencer and P Andy Lee both were teammates of Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald and ILB Gerald Hayes during the 2002 season. 49ers TE Nate Byham and Cardinals RB Larod Stephens-Howling were teammates at Pitt from 2006-08.

LONGHORN LOVE - 49ers CB Tarell Brown and Cardinals C Lyle Sendlein were teammates at the University of Texas from 2004-05.

TROJAN TIES - 49ers G Chilo Rachal and Cardinals G Deuce Lutui were teammates at USC from 2004-05.

Series Highlights
Matchups: 38
Series Record: 49ers lead series 22-16
49ers Home Record vs. Cardinals: 49ers Lead Series 12-8
First Meeting: 11/18/51, Cardinals win 27-21, at San Francisco
Last Meeting: 11/29/10, 49ers win 27-6, at Arizona
Current Streak: Won 3
Longest 49ers Win Streak: 5 - two times (9/14/80-10/18/87, 10/24/93-12/21/02)
Longest Cardinals Win Streak: 4 - two times (10/6/74-12/2/79, 10/2/05-12/24/06)
Most 49ers Points: 50 (12/7/03), 50-14 at San Francisco
Most Cardinals Points: 34 (Two Times), Last: 9/10/06
49ers Shutouts: None
Cardinals Shutouts
: None

At Glendale, AZ, November 29, 2010

Monday Night Football would once again set the stage for an electrifying performance by the San Francisco 49ers as they went into the University of Phoenix Stadium and beat their division rivals, the Arizona Cardinals, 27-6. With each team sitting at 3-7 heading into the matchup, it was a must win for both teams in order to save their seasons.

San Francisco wasted no time and began pouring it on, totaling 261 yds. rushing on 47 carries, the most by the 49ers since 11/19/06 vs. Sea. (262 yds. rushing). RB Brian Westbrook entered the game after RB Frank Gore was injured early in the 1st qtr., and went on to dominate the Cardinal defense, totaling 136 yds. and 1 TD on 23 carries. With a physicality that could not be matched, the 49ers had their way with the Cardinals on both sides of the ball as they pressured QB Derek Anderson, forcing him into 1 INT and 1 FF as well as sacking him once. NT Aubrayo Franklin scooped up his first career FR as Cardinals RB Beanie Wells bobbled an Anderson handoff on the 49ers first play on defense. Franklin's FR led to a 38-yd. strike from QB Troy Smith to WR Michael Crabtree on the very next play.

The 49ers did not stop there as they scored 21 points in the first half, including a 1-yd. TD run by RB Anthony Dixon on the very next offensive series, and Westbrook's 8-yd. TD run to cap off the 2nd qtr. It marked the first time the 49ers scored at least 21 pts. in the first half since 11/16/08 vs. StL (35 first half points). Arizona's inability to score was made difficult due to the fact that the 49ers defense allowed only 8 first downs, and once again did not allow a single 100-yd. rusher.

Late in the 3rd qtr., with the score 24-6, the 49ers put the game out of reach for good as LB Takeo Spikes picked off an Anderson pass intended for WR Early Doucet. The INT gave Spikes his second INT of the season and 17th of his career, and set up the final scoring for the 49ers, a 26-yd. FG by K Shane Andrus. With the score 27-6 late in the 4th qtr., the 49ers chewed up the clock with the ground game, sealing the victory for the visitors.

2010 Statistics

49ERS (rank) CARDINALS (rank)
5-10 (t-3rd NFCW) Record 5-10 (t-3rd NFCW)
17.8 (28th) Points per game 18.8 (26th)
310.1 (26th) Total Offense 268.7 (31st)
103.8 (19th) Rushing Offense 87.3 (31st)
206.3 (22nd) Passing Offense 181.3 (31st)
28:43 (23rd) Possession Avg 25:48 (31st)
22.6 (18th) Points allowed/gm 26.4 (31st)
331.0 (14th) Total Defense 374.3 (t-27th)
100.6 (7th) Rushing Defense 113.1 (16th)
233.1 (t-24th) Passing Defense 226.1 (21st)
30 (t-16th) Sacks 31 (15th)
46.9 (t-3rd) Punting Avg (Gross) 43.6 (17th)
-3 (t-16th) Turnover Differential -3 (t-16th)