The San Francisco 49ers run defense has been much maligned this season, and they have done nothing to provide fans any sort of confidence in Week 7. The 49ers took a 14-0 lead, but have given up 17 unanswered points and the Bucs lead 17-14 at halftime. The Bucs passing game has gained confidence, but the 49ers have also given up 144 rushing yards.
Jacquizz Rodgers rushed for 110 yards in the first half (8.5 ypc), while Peyton Barber added 22 (4.4 ypc). This is the second straight week a running back has surpassed 100 rushing yards in the first half. LeSean McCoy had 106 yards for the Bills last week.
The 49ers have moved Gerald Hodges back into the lineup, but it has not improved the run defense sufficiently. They made a big stop of Rodgers on 4th and 1 early in the game, but things have gone south in a hurry. Missed tackles and too many talent questions remain the big problems.
It also doesn’t help that Jameis Winston is gaining confidence in the passing game. After a slow start, including an interception, he heads into halftime having completed 12 of 18 passes for 165 yards, two touchdowns, and the interception.
The 49ers head in to their bye after this week, and something needs to change. I don’t think they would fire Jim O’Neil quite yet, but if this unit does not improve, there will be some additional change. They don’t have many players left to replace, so that leaves firing O’Neil as the only real possible change.