The offense continued to hum out of the half after Purdy found Aiyuk for another explosive play. But Colton McKivitz gave up a sack, and a promising drive was all of a sudden staring 3rd & 24 in the face.
To give you an idea of how efficient the 49ers offense had been up to that point, that was only the third 3rd down the offense had faced. Mitch Wishnowsky’s punt was downed at the 1-yard line by newcomer Kendall Sheffield, giving the defense a chance for a quick three-and-out.
The Cardinals, backed up in their own goal line, had plays of 7, 11, 6, and then 41 to get into San Francisco’s red zone. Arizona would have three consecutive plays of 10 yards, then found the end zone to make it a five-point game. The Cardinals decided to chase points, which was a mistake, and the score was 21-16.
The 49ers needed an answer. Aiyuk was open once again and Purdy found him 34 yards down the field. After one play, San Francisco was in Arizona’s territory. McCaffrey caught a swing pass for a gain of 13 yards, and the Niners were in the red zone. That was Christian’s fifth catch of at least 10 yards.