The San Francisco 49ers set an NFL record by becoming the first team in history to lose five consecutive games by three points or less. On Sunday, they lost to Washington by two points, and over their last five games they have lost by a grand total of just 13 points.
Kyle Shanahan has spoken at length about how close things have been on the scoreboard. He’s noted in the past that the 49ers could easily have been 4-1 if not for a handful of plays. Now we can say that the 49ers could easily have been 5-1 if not for a handful of plays.
They’re very close to winning games, so you’d think they aren’t interested in making sweeping changes. Well ... that’s definitely not the case. The 49ers have almost looked desperate with the changes they’ve made of late: releasing NaVorro Bowman and now benching Brian Hoyer despite the belief that such a move wouldn’t happen for awhile.
Shanahan wants to win now, regardless of season goals. That’s admirable, and I understand how deflating it must be to deal with so many close, competitive games, especially when those games end with horrible officiating as Sunday’s game against Washington did. I can’t say the 49ers would have won if that offensive pass interference call is made, but it certainly could only go one way after said call.
Either way, the 49ers weren’t a huge disaster one either side of the ball. I think the defense missed Bowman late against Washington, but ultimately they played fine against a decent Washington offense led by Kirk Cousins.
Cousins finished Sunday’s game with 25 of 37 completions for 330 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Washington rushed for 95 yards as a team, while the 49ers only managed 85 yards on the ground, though Carlos Hyde did have two rushing touchdowns.