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Golden Nuggets: One sleep away

Your daily San Francisco 49ers news for Saturday, September 16th, 2023

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Hutchinson: The oddball Rams aren’t setting up a trap game for the 49ers… right?

“But after a 30-7 win over the Steelers on the road, and with a Rams roster of players you might assume were Madden-generated, there’s no desperation on the 49ers side.

They don’t need any juice.

If anything, it’s Los Angeles’ extremely young roster with a resurgent, healthy Stafford and Donald that needs the juice. Their players are too inexperienced and too well-coached to know they’re supposed to be a bad team. They have nothing to lose.”

49ers injury report: Womack (MCL) placed on IR, out 6 to 8 weeks

“The 49ers have yet to decide on the corresponding roster move to fill Womack’s spot on the 53-man roster.”

A pick six has become an annual 49ers tradition against Rams: Will it continue? (paywall)

“The year was 2020. NFL stadiums were mostly empty. SoFi didn’t have any fans in the stands, so rookie 49ers defensive lineman Javon Kinlaw could hear every word that his position coach, Kris Kocurek, barked from the sideline.

Kocurek wasn’t happy as Kinlaw, stymied by a double team, went off-script and subtly dropped into coverage.

“No, J.K.!” Kinlaw remembered Kocurek yelling. “What are you doing?”

Kinlaw was trusting his instincts. They would serve him well. Then-Rams quarterback Jared Goff wanted to throw a screen pass.

“I just looked at his eyes and I moved over a little bit,” Kinlaw said.

Goff’s throw went straight to Kinlaw, who returned it for a critical touchdown in the 49ers’ eventual win. He heard Kocurek’s “no!” turn into proclamations of “yes!” on repeat as he barreled toward pay dirt in the empty stadium.

“I missed the next three drives because I was so tired,” Kinlaw said with a laugh.”

Who’s that? 49ers don’t recognize many now faceless Rams of Team Try Hard (paywall)

“Donald is the only defensive starter remaining from the team that beat the 49ers 20-17 in the NFC Championship Game 20 months ago. He was joined in Week 1 by seven first-stringers who entered the season with fewer than 10 career starts in the NFL. That group includes pass rusher Jonah Williams (undrafted, Weber State), linebacker Michael Hoecht (undrafted, Brown) and linebacker Christian Rozenboom (undrafted, South Dakota State).”

John Lynch shares impressions from Week 1; Jets didn’t call 49ers about Sam Darnold

“On that same play, [G] Aaron Banks was the fastest O-lineman in football last week. We get GPS readings, and he was running down the field chasing Christian and ran almost 16 miles an hour at 335 pounds. So stuff like that, I think it’s just kind of the fabric of who we want to be as a football team and what we showed in Week 1. It’s those little things that make a big difference.”

49ers’ evolving nickel back situation will be tested as defense thrives

“Shanahan declined to reveal what caused the 49ers to go with Oliver at nickel back in the second half.

“(That’s) stuff that’s between me and our team,” he said. “Just watch the film. You might be able to figure it out. Stuff I can’t say, sorry.”

In the first half, Lenoir gave up three receptions on four targets from the slot for just 23 yards, per PFF. Oliver surrendered catches on all three targets for 25 yards in the second half.

Thomas played 34 snaps at cornerback. Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett targeted him six times, and five of those passes were completed for 32 yards.”

Five 49ers players to watch in Week 2 NFC West clash vs. Rams

“The winner of the 49ers-Los Angeles Rams Week 2 matchup Sunday will take sole possession of first place in the NFC West.”

Holdout over, 49ers’ Nick Bosa focused on taking next step

“Nick Bosa said much of that time was spent strengthening “everything,” improving his mobility and focusing on his hamstrings so they can hold up for a full season. Although the circumstances were different, Bosa had limited snaps in training camp and the preseason in 2019 and 2021. He still had a combined 24.5 sacks in those seasons.”