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49ers fall to the Chiefs 19-16; Niners rookies have impressive showings

Kansas City Chiefs v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The 49ers received the opening kick, and Jimmy Garoppolo went 3-3. Brandon Aiyuk had an end-around, and Deebo Samuel made a defender miss. The first drive stalled after Charlie Woerner committed offensive pass interference.

With 16 starters sitting on both sides of the ball, sloppy play in the team’s first preseason game was to be expected.

The “first-team” defense forced a stop. However, they did surrender a touchdown after Talanoa Hufanga committed defensive pass interference on Tyreek Hill after giving up the edge on Hill earlier. Nothing like facing one of the fastest players in the NFL during your first preseason game.

Speaking of rookies, Demmodore Lenoir had an opportunistic interception early in the game. Oh, there was another rookie who played.

Trey Lance went three-and-out after his first drive. Aiyuk dropped a pass that would have led to a first down. On the second drive, Lance tossed a 45-yard pass in the air to training camp legend Trent Sherfield for an 80-yard touchdown pass:

That was a pretty pass, and props to Sherfield for fighting through contact and continuing his route.

Another player who stood out during training camp has been linebacker Jonas Griffith. He nearly ran into an interception on a third-down but couldn’t quite run under the throw.

Pass protection was a problem, as Lance took a few hits early in the game from unblocked defenders. However, that didn’t slow the rookie down, as he started from the one-yard line on his third drive. Lance found Charlier Woerner, who ran a great route, on a corner pass for a 34-yard gain.

A drop from River Cracraft stalled the drive, but the excitement is evident as Lance showed he could keep drives alive by buying time with his legs.

After playing 15 plays — Shanahan said Lance would play 30 plays — Lance was 4-6 for 125 yards and a touchdown. He did take two sacks, though I’m not sure either was his fault. Richie James dropped Lance’s next third-down pass for a would-be first down. Each of Lance’s incompletions was drops.

Lance would get a two-minute drill before the end of the half. He was fortunate not to throw an interception after not seeing the cornerback underneath. Lance missed Woerner wide on the next throw, which brought on 3rd & 10, where Lance was sacked.

After the defense stopped Kansas City and they missed a 62-yarder, they took over at midfield. On first down, Aaron Banks gave up a sack. Banks had a few plays during the first half where he was beaten instantaneously off the snap. Between him and Jaylon Moore, there were too many busted protections.

Lance wasn’t innocent, as he almost threw another interception on third down on an intended target to Jauan Jennings, where the ball was slightly late and inside. Of course, Jennings could have come back to the ball, but the point here is that you can’t be late over the middle.

Overall, Lance had some highs and some lows, which was to be expected. The excitement won’t wear off, and it’ll be fun for us to watch him grow up and evolve first-hand.

Lance would start the second half after playing 26 snaps and going 5-12 in the first half. He went three-and-out.

I wanted to see Hufanga run around, and he was active on special teams. It seemed as if the rookie out of USC had every tackle on special teams for the Niners.

Next, it was Josh Rosen’s turn. First, he found Jauan Jennings, who plucked the ball out of the air for 26 yards. Then, Jordan Matthews caught a pass and made his way up the sideline for 16 yards. The Niners sideline exploded with enthusiasm for Matthews. That was fun to watch.

During the draft, Banks went to the ground and left the game with a shoulder injury. He was listed as questionable to return.

Unfortunately, Rosen, who has been a turnover machine during practice, kept that going as he airmailed a pass to Travis Benjamin that landed right in the chest of a Chiefs safety.

JaMycal Hasty can be an exciting player. He had a 21-yard gain and had six carries for 39 yards and a couple of nice cuts at one point. But, fumbles have been an issue all training camp. Hasty had the ball poked out that stalled another 49ers promising drive.

Nsimba Roster had back-to-back 34-yard gains followed by a first down run by Hasty to put the 49ers in the red zone. Hasty punched it in from short, and a Robbie Gould field goal gave the Niners a 16-13 lead.

The Chiefs marched the field to score a touchdown, but Harrison Butker missed the extra point to make it 19-16. That left the 49ers a little over a minute left to score. Rosen couldn’t lead the team after