The 49ers have dominated opponents during their undefeated start to the season, but not how one would think a Shanahan led team would. It’s not the offense but the defense that has been the strength of this team. I want to bring up a particular stat from Sunday: the 49ers rushed 41 times for 99 yards. 41 rushes compared to Jimmy Garoppolo’s 33 passing attempts seems a little too conservative to me, especially when you’re only averaging 2.41 yds/rush. Here’s what Shanahan had to say about the game:
“Always, as a play-caller, you usually want to attack the defense. When they load the box, you want to find a weakness and throw the ball. But when you sit there and watch the defense play as well as they are, you also want to make sure you don’t turn it over, and especially if you have a lead. You take some of those elements into your decision-making, it makes it a lot easier for me to stick with it.
“... It took pressure off guys. When you get 41 runs called and you’re getting two-something a carry that means you’re converting some third downs and your defense is getting the ball back, the whole team is playing together. It allowed us to play situational football, take our shots when we had them. The guys have been real fun to coach this year.”
The Shanahan of yesteryear would have had no trouble throwing the ball 50 times a game, but now he trusts his defense so much that he is forming gameplans around it. He’s leaning heavily on the run and intentionally turning Garoppolo into a game manager. It’s obviously working, and who am I to question it, but I’m just so tired of seeing all these complaints about Garoppolo. I long for that gunslinger that won us over in 2017, and I can’t wait for the day that Kyle unleashes him. There’s no doubt in my mind that Jimmy G is a franchise QB.
Now on to those links...
The Undefeated 49ers and Their Juggernaut Defense Are Here to Stay (Albert Breer, Sports Illustrated)
George Kittle knows why Jimmy Garoppolo threw five picks vs. 49ers defense (Josh Schrock, NBC Sports)
What They Said: 49ers, Rams Analyze the Divisional Clash (Matthew Asher, 49ers.com)
49ers News: Jerry Rice Says SF Could Play in Super Bowl LIV ‘Without a Doubt’ (Scott Polacek, Bleacher Report)
Here’s the milestone 49ers’ Jimmy Garoppolo can reach vs. Washington (David Bonilla, 49ers Webzone)
3 NFL Takeaways: 49ers Are Among NFC’s Elite (Tim Kelly, Radio.com Sports)
Around the league...
NFL Week 6 grades: Redskins and Dolphins get an ‘A’ for effort, Packers get ‘B+’ for edging Lions (John Breech, CBS Sports)
NFL Week 7 Power Rankings: Subtle differences between playoff teams and also-rans (Doug Farrar, Touchdown Wire)
NFL rumors: Panthers’ Cam Newton likely to practice before 49ers game (Marcus White, NBC Sports)
Packers beat Lions amid controversial calls; here’s a look at some that influenced Monday night’s game (Cody Benjamin, CBS Sports)
Everyone Agrees: NFL Referees Are Incompetent (John Maakaron, Sports Illustrated)
Danielle Hunter sets NFL record for most sacks before 25th birthday (Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk)
2020 NFL Mock Draft: Jordan Love replaces Jameis Winston, Chargers plan for post-Philip Rivers era (Chris Trapasso, CBS Sports)
The Winners and Losers of NFL Week 6 (Rodger Sherman, The Ringer)