The 49ers have won four straight games for the first time since 2019, completing an undefeated month of November that was capped off with a 13-0 win over the New Orleans Saints. Here are my five takeaways from the 49ers' seventh win of the season.
Given the shutout pitched by the 49ers
Build the DeMeco Ryans statue
What Ryans has done in the year, plus he has been in his role as defensive coordinator, has been nothing short of spectacular. Game after game, week after week, Ryans is consistently pressing the right buttons for a defensive unit that has ranked in the top five during the entirety of Ryans tenure with the 49ers.
This unit, which is unquestionably the league's best defense this season, find themselves amid a streak that has seen them shut out their opponents in the 2nd half in four consecutive games.
The 49ers' defense ranks at or near the top of the league in almost every statistical category that holds any kind of significance. Here is where they rank through 12 weeks:
Points per game allowed - 15.1 (1st)
Yards allowed per game - 281.7 (1st)
Rushing yards allowed per game - 79.5 (1st)
Yards allowed per rush - 3.31 (1st)
1st downs allowed - 182 (1st)
Since the 49ers' defense allowed the Chiefs to score 44 points in a Week 7 loss at home, they have held the four opponents they have played since to a total of 40 points COMBINED.
Enjoy every second of the brilliance Ryans brings week after week because the odds of him remaining with the 49ers beyond this season are essentially all but evaporated at this point.
History was made on Sunday
The 49ers' shutout of the Saints on Sunday was the first time that New Orleans was held scoreless in over twenty years, breaking a streak of 323 consecutive games dating back to January 6th, 2002, when the Saints were shutout by... none other than the San Francisco 49ers.
In fact, the Saints have only been shut out four times in the last 25 years, and all four have come at the hand of a 49ers defense. Here are the times they occurred:
Week 12, 2022 - 49ers 13, Saints 0
Week 17, 2001 - 49ers 38, Saints 0
Week 6, 1998 - 49ers 31 - Saints 0
Week 9, 1997 - 49ers 23 - Saints )
Fred Warner is one of one
Warner is the gold standard for the linebacker position in the modern NFL. There is no other player in the league at the position who is able to cover opposing teams' top receiving options, dominate in the run game, and rush the passer with a high level of efficiency.
This is a one-of-one kind of player. A generational talent who will one day go down as one of the most gifted players to ever don a 49ers uniform. And Sunday’s win over the Saints was the perfect embodiment of how Warner is able to impact the game at all three levels.
Warner finished the game with two passes deflected while being tasked with covering rookie standout Chris Olave who has been one of the ten best wide receivers in the league this season. Warner also recorded three stops in the run game, as well as a quarterback hit while rushing the passer.
To cap it off, Warner also added an immaculate peanut punch to force a fumble on the first New Orleans possession of the game. It was an all-around masterclass for a player who is undoubtedly playing at an All-Pro level this season.
Nick Bosa makes history
Bosa became just the fifth player since 2000 to record at least one sack in nine of his first ten games of a season, joining Hugh Douglas, who did it in 2000, Everson Griffen, who did it in 2017, Robert Mathis who did it in 2005, and Demarcus Ware who did it in 2008.
Douglas, Ware, and Griffen were all named to their respective All-Pro teams in those seasons, something that bodes well for Bosa’s prospects of being rewarded with All-Pro honors for the first time in his career this season.
The tide is turning with turnovers
Turnovers win games, and the 49ers came out of this one plus two in turnover margin after forcing two fumbles, including one on the goal line that helped keep the shutout intact. The 49ers are now +1 on the season in turnover differential, the first time they have had a positive turnover margin since week five.