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Simulation Saturday: 49ers vs Packers in Madden 16

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We simulate Sunday's matchup against the Green Bay Packers

Into Week 4 we go with our Madden simulations of the San Francisco 49ers. So far, Madden is 1-2 in our simulations. They got the Pittsburgh game right, for better or worse, but failed with Minnesota (you know, the game we won) and Arizona. Arizona was exactly opposite as Madden predicted.

What does all this mean? Nothing really. I'm trying to get some sort of handle on a formula that will say how our game will go. So far, I'm better with my own playing and basing it off on how much trouble those teams give me than when I leave everything in the A.I.'s hands.

So for this simulation, Vernon Davis and Bryan Bulaga have been pulled. I finished this JUST as news about Davante Adams' downgraded condition hit, so he's going to be in this game.

1st Quarter:

The Niners received and began a balanced approached going run/pass/run/pass. Carlos Hyde didn't get many yards, but Kaepernick connected when he could, especially on a 40 yard bomb to Torrey Smith to get the Niners to the Packers' 15 yard line.  The following play netted Carlos Hyde 5 yards and Ha Ha Clinton Dix an injury. The Niners were unable to cash in on the big play and left with a field goal for their first drive.

Score 3-0, Niners

The Packers started a drive that began with promise, a Randall Cobb 13 yard catch, but stalled with two short Aaron Rodgers scrambles and an incompletion.The Niners couldn't do much better and both teams traded series before Colin Kaepernick fumbled the ball on the 49ers 30 yard line, recovered by Julius Peppers. With the short field position, Rodgers connected with Cobb for a touchdown a few plays later.

Score 7-3, Packers

The Niners marched down the field in response, deploying Quinton Patton for a few sweet passes before stalling again on the goal line. Carlos Hyde couldn't go anywhere whether running or being thrown to, and the team settled for another field goal.

Score 7-6, Packers

The Packers took the ball and began the march downfield before the quarter ended.

2nd Quarter:

Aaron Rodgers started chucking the ball all over the place and hitting everyone in site. Davante Adams began the cross midfield and into the redzone, while James Jones took a pair of catches to check himself in for a touch down.

Score 14-6, Packers

The Niners  again ran a balanced offense, getting around 2-3 yards from Carlos Hyde in rushes while Quinton Patton and Bruce Miller made some sweet runs of 13 and 16 yards respectfully. Despite the promise, the Niners again were stuffed in the endzone, leading to another Phil Dawson field goal. It must be a throwback game.

Score 14-9, Packers

The Packers tried to run another score in, but a pair of holding penalties around midfield put an end to that. After the punt, the Niners stormed down the field, largely in part to a pass interference penalty on the Packers that put them on the Green Bay 30 yard line. From there, Reggie Bush picked up a few yards and Colin Kaepernick took matters into his own hands and ran the ball into the endzone.

Score 16-14, Niners

Between Aaron Rodgers' running, James Starks' rushing and Davante Adams running around the field, the Packers managed to score again within only a couple minutes.

Score 21-16, Packers

The Niners offense officially woke up. A nice 30 yard pass to Anquan Boldin helped as did a 19 yard TD pass to none other than Quinton Patton. This all happened in under a minute. We got 4 minutes of the half left too!

Score 23-21, Niners

The Green Bay offense again started airing things out, but was stalled in Niners territory. This led to a missed 54 yard field goal by Mason Crosby.

The Niners stopped throwing and deployed the rushing attack with Carlos Hyde busing it down the field to the 5 yard line and Bruce Miller breaking in for a touchdown. Yeah...I'm tempted to start this simulation over.I really don't see it going like this.

Score 30-21, Niners. Because...Madden

The Packers offense couldn't do much of anything after the touchdown and the Niners defense had Aaron Rodgers test the playing surface with a sack. While the Packers punted, Kaepernick's next pass resulted in a pick six for Damarious Randall. That sounds a bit more accurate.

Score 30-28, Niners

The offense took a knee to close out the half.

3rd Quarter

Two face mask penalties and several incompletions kept the Packers from doing anything on the next possession and had them punting out of their own endzone. The Niners in turn, couldn't do anything either and punted as well, only to get it back after a 3 and out. This started up a small drive that ended in a Phil Dawson field goal.

Score: 33-28, Niners

The Packers started a promising drive, with several good Aaron Rodgers scrambles, however the drive slowly lost steam as they came into the redzone, walking away with a field goal.

Score 33-31, Niners

The Niners came out and started another balanced drive with Carlos Hyde getting some good carries while Colin Kaepernick hit Torrey Smith and Anquan Boldin on two key 3rd downs for big gains. The drive was capped with a Reggie Bush rush into the end zone.

Score 40-31, Niners

The Packers responded, airing the ball out with several 12-17 yard throws, capping off the drive with a 1 yard touchdown pass to James Jones.

Score 40-38, Niners

The Niners didn't get many plays going on the next drive. A short pass to Carlos Hyde helped get them to their own 40 yard line and Reggie Bush helped them get to midfield. Then their drive was over, because Reggie Bush rushed it for 49 yards and the score. Because, Madden.

Score 47-38, Niners

The Packers took a knee on the kickoff as the quarter came to an end.

4th Quarter:

Aaron Rodgers ran a short drive, scoring in a minute with his receivers eating up yardage after their catches. The drive concluded with Davante Adams touchdown.

Score 47-45, Niners

The Niners started running the ball and the clock, however on 2nd and 6, Colin Kaepernick went down and Blaine Gabbert came into the game. Gabbert was unable to do anything to get us back to the endzone and the Niners punted.

The Packers had a hopeful drive started, but a holding penalty killed their arrival into 49er territory and they had to settle for a Mason Crosby field goal. The Pack is in the lead.

Score 48-47, Packers

Colin Kaepernick came back into the game, but the offense went to a 3 and out, punting the ball back to Green Bay. Eddie Lacey made his presence known, helping a largely rushing-based drive. Unfortunately, James Starks was stuffed for a modest loss and the Packers again settled for a field goal. The Niners have a chance.

Score 51-47, Packers

The Niners offense came back to earth, because on the next play from scrimmage, Colin Kaepernick threw a dumb pick to Damarious Randall. With 5 minutes to go, this isn't looking good. With the short field, Rodgers made quick work of the turnover, hitting Randall Cobb for a touchdown.

Score 58-47, Packers

The Niners tried going for it on 4th down, however, Colin Kaepernick's rush left them a yard shy on their own 40 yard line.

Yep, another Aaron Rodgers TD

Score 65-47, Packers

The Niners offense failed to do anything in four plays. From there the Packers offense was able run the clock and take a knee.

Final score 65-47, Packers

Observations:

Yes, I do max out the difficulty in the simulations, though I don't know what good that does since I'm not playing these. And yes, I am playing Madden, not Tecmo Bowl.  I really don't think we're going to see either team with these numbers.

In any case, the Niners offense was efficient when running a balanced attack rather than running the ball continually. The defense wasn't terrible, but their pass rush simply couldn't get to Aaron Rodgers. When those small holes did open up, Rodgers could just run away.

The big killer to the 49ers offense was the turnovers. The fumble and interceptions simply didn't really help them at all.Not that they would, but against a team like Green Bay, just one of those can doom you.

The way this game played out does seem like how this game will be Sunday. I don't think it will be a 65-47 score (my God), but I do see the Niners potentially taking a lead and then just being outplayed towards the end.

As good as Aaron Rodgers is, I don't see him throwing for 569 yards and 6 touchdowns. Even against our defense.  Yes, you read that right. Because, Madden.