After the debacle of a game against the Denver Broncos, I wrote about Marcus Martin and the San Francisco 49ers offensive line. In particular, I voiced my confidence in the unit, but ultimately expressed that I felt things would get worse before they would get better. A lot of people disagreed with me -- the majority, in fact. I wish that majority had been right.
Because I certainly did not expect the St. Louis Rams to put up eight sacks, dominating all five members of the offensive line and forcing Colin Kaepernick into making some very questionable throws. I expected it to be yet another tough matchup in the trenches, but the absolute domination that occurred on Sunday was certainly a sight to behold. I wasn't even angry about it after the fourth or fifth sack.
As usual, I'm going to go through and break down the sacks given up by the 49ers -- all eight of them -- though I'd once again like to note that I'm going to be making some very quick judgments. The focus of this post should be the GIFs, not the analysis thereof. I'm thinking we'll break these up into two posts, with four GIFs here and four GIFs in the other one. Here's the first four:
1st Quarter, 1st and 10 at SF 36: Kaepernick sacked for -7 yards
When I first watched this play, I was critical of Kaepernick's inability to get the ball of more quickly. I did watch a few more angles and came to realize that I was being a little harsh, but I still think he doesn't stand in the pocket and deliver the ball in the face of pressure as often as I'd like out of a top-tier quarterback. But both Anthony Davis and Alex Boone mess up on this one, and neither gives him much time to do anything.
Here's a look at the coaches' film:
As you can see, there were some promising routes on the play, and Kaepernick did has his options underneath -- especially on first down. But it's hard to fault him when Boone and Davis lose containment on their men so quickly.
2nd Quarter, 3rd and 10 at SF 35: Kaepernick sacked for -8 yards
It seems like everyone stuck to their assignments on this play, but both Mike Iupati and Boone are slow to react. That's where the play breaks down -- though it's worth noting the 49ers were overwhelmed in general. But both Iupati and Boone turn around at essentially the same time to watch Kaepernick get sacked while the rest of the offensive linemen are engaging or engaged. You'll notice the ball is snapped with one second on the play clock. That's a recurring theme.
2nd Quarter, 2nd and 6 at SF 43: Kaepernick sacked for -5 yards
I'm not sure if Davis expected to have a back in there to chip or not, but he simply lets the outside man go right past him, despite the fact that it's pretty clear that guy is rushing and not dropping back into coverage. It was a sloppy play from that side of the line and Kaepernick had little chance, though he did have some underneath routes developing on the other side of the field. I'd say he didn't have a chance to look over there, but I honestly don't think he was ever planning on it. Looked like he was locking on to one of his guys to his right -- probably Stevie Johnson.
2nd Quarter, 3rd and 3 at STL 43: Kaepernick sacked for -4 yards
Everybody here gets their assignment save for the running back, and he does a decent enough job anyway. The Rams simply sent more people than the 49ers were ready for. As usual, the wide receivers took too long to develop their routes so any possibility of exploiting the blitz was thrown out the window. I suppose if you want to get critical, then Martin may have missed a line call or an assignment but it's impossible for us to know something like that for certain.