I’d like to take you to a place far, far away from here, San Francisco 49ers fans. To a world where the 49ers didn’t blow a game against the New York Jets. To a world where reports about Jed York getting his comeuppance are actually true. To a world where the 49ers pulverized an opposing quarterback to the tune of six sacks.
That’s right ... let all that other nonsense just fall right off your shoulders. Doesn’t that feel better?
Sunday’s game against the Jets ... why that was just the game where the 49ers feasted on an inexperienced and panic-prone quarterback. The final score? Who even remembers such a silly thing ... as if they keep track? The only thing that matters is destruction. Sweet, merciful destruction and the panicked eyes of a quarterback with little trust in his offensive line.
Let’s go to that place. Let’s look at the six sacks on Jets quarterback Bryce Petty.
2nd and 6 from NYJ 28 at 10:00 in the 1st Quarter: Petty sacked at NYJ for -10 yards (Gerald Hodges)
Petty tries a pump fake and it does work to an extent. If only the first player to get to him was the only one in his face, but alas, the 49ers are all over him. But I can watch those two jump up into the air at nothing all day. Can’t you? The Jets’ receivers are all running deep routes and Petty has no time to set and try and find one of them. I mean look at that offensive line — not a single one of them holds his block.
3rd and 4 from SF 45 at 2:44 in 1st Quarter: Petty sacked at SF 45 for 0 yards (Deforest Buckner)
There isn’t much to say about this sack. Petty has nobody open because the 49ers are playing strong underneath zone coverage. So he steps up and tries to run it but But Deforest Buckner manages to disengage from his blocker and actually dive to get Petty to the ground. The linebacker closes fast enough but it’s Buckner who makes the good play. And honestly, this should have been a loss for a yard but let’s move on.
3rd and 6 from NYJ 29 at 5:02 in 2nd Quarter: Petty sacked at NYJ 22 for -7 yards (Jimmie Ward)
The safety blitz is one of my absolute favorite plays in all of football. You have the 49ers disguising exactly who is coming by having two players at the line drop back. But Jimmie Ward is not one of those players. Ward is blitzing and because of the misdirection, the Jets have FOUR offensive linemen who don’t even know that someone else is coming on the left side and three people who are doing exactly nothing. That’s perfection.
3rd and 8 from SF 48 at 1:06 in 2nd Quarter: Petty sacked at NYJ 47 for -5 yards (Ronald Blair, Aaron Lynch)
And here is the biggest issue with Petty. When he starts to feel uncomfortable, he panics. There is no thought to actually rolling out. There’s no thought to firing to a dumpoff option. Maybe his intentions are that it’s a third down and he desperately wants to make a play, but that’s ill-advised. He panics and is only trying to escape. He doesn’t manage to, allowing Blair and Lynch to split a sack. Watch Lynch the whole play — it’s really beautiful what he can do to an offensive lineman.
2nd and 9 from SF 34 at 9:38 in 2nd Quarter: Petty sacked at SF 43 for -9 yards (Deforest Buckner)
Here, Petty again doesn’t let the ball fly. He should be drilling it as soon as he sees the left tackle lose containment, but instead he panics at the last second and it’s an easy sack for Buckner. The 49ers only rushed three on the play, but Buckner managed to get the sack while the man in the middle took on two guys, freeing up Buckner on the outside.
2nd and 8 from SF 8 at 7:37 in 2nd Quarter: Petty sacked at SF 18 for -10 yards (Jaquiski Tartt)
Did I mention I love the safety blitz? Here, the 49ers give a similar look to last time, but flipped. And this time, one of the guys who previously was actually drpoping back did not, in fact, drop back. The outside man drags the right tackle wide outside with him and it’s an easy hole for Tartt to fit through.