Heading into Week 1 the San Francisco 49ers found themselves ranked No. 24. After a win over Tampa Bay, they climbed to No. 19. The Niners handled business against the Bengals and moved up six spots to No. 13. After a win over the Steelers, the 49ers find themselves in the top-10 at No. 7 in NFL.com’s latest power rankings.
Previous rank: No. 13
The 49ers are 3-0 for the first time since 1998. Sunday’s win was a minor miracle; not many teams finish a game with five turnovers -- including three inside the opponent’s 20-yard line -- and come out clean on the other side. Consider it a testament to the team’s resolve, and the continued progress of Jimmy Garoppolo, who wiped away two Steelers second-half leads with touchdown drives. Jimmy G’s final numbers were pedestrian, but both his interceptions came on passes that probably should have been caught by his intended targets. He delivered a solid performance -- and looks more comfortable with each passing week, a very good sign. The most important statistic from the win? The 49ers’ defense held the Steelers to just six points off the 49ers’ five turnovers. Early bye weeks are never preferred, but there’s something to be said for staying undefeated for another 14 days without playing a snap.
For whatever reason, I’ve seen plenty of “the 49ers opponents have a combined record of 1-8, so we won’t know how good they are.”
The Cowboys played Eli Manning, Case Keenum, and Josh Rosen.
You get the picture. It’s ludicrous to think every team is playing murderers row week in and week out. You play who is on your schedule. The good teams early on are doing what they’re supposed to do, beat the bad teams.
A miracle may be a stretch, but you won’t find many teams that can overcome five turnovers. Credit goes to the defense for swarming Mason Rudolph and the Steelers’ wide receivers.
We forget that was Jimmy G’s third game after injury. We continue to look more and more comfortable, and you can tell by how he’s hanging in the pocket and taking hits.
As the author said, the stat that matters is a W. Blow a team out or win on a late touchdown, just win, baby.