Submitted on behalf of Hunter Neel. Follow him on Twitter: @hunterneel_
Wow, what a game! The 49ers are really firing on all cylinders. The team started the game off as strong as strong as one could by scoring a touchdown on the opening drive. The Jaguars haven’t surrendered a touchdown on the opening drive since Week 10 of the 2016 season. This is very impressive from a team in last place in the NFC West and playing the number one defense in the league.
The success didn’t stop there. Fourth year cornerback Dontae Johnson intercepted a pass by Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles and returned it 50 yards for a touchdown. The point after was blocked by the Jaguars defense returned for a two point conversion and the score resulted in a 16-2 49ers lead.
Jimmy Garoppolo is so scary good. He is now 6-0 as a starter and beat the number one defense in the league, scoring 44 points against them. Garoppolo had a very impressive day completing 21 of 30 passes for 242 yards and 2 touchdowns while throwing just one interception. He also ran for his first rushing touchdown of his career. Head coach Kyle Shanahan really took advantage of the holes in the Jaguars defense; getting fullback Kyle Juszczyk heavily involved in the passing game.
The 49ers were also able to get the both running backs Carlos Hyde and Matt Breida, involved and established the running game early. Carlos Hyde had one touchdown, tying his career high of six on the year. Undrafted free agent Matt Breida had 11 carries for 74 yards and a touchdown.
Rookie Solomon Thomas came to life tonight to help establish pressure on quarterback Blake Bortles. Fellow rookie linebacker Reuben Foster was all over the field making plays again. The secondary came up big and took advantage of Bortles’ inconsistency, racking up three interceptions including one for a score.
What This Win Means
Some 49ers fans on the Twitterverse are mad that the team keeps winning because it affects their draft order tremendously. The more wins the 49ers accumulate, the longer they have to wait to get on the clock come draft time unless they trade up. This could mean that key players that fit the 49ers needs will not be available. However, continuing to win provides great hope for the future of this team. It seems that this team is a lot closer to being a playoff contender than many think, especially after tonight’s win. Kyle Shanahan’s offense is working really well with Garoppolo at the helm. The first year head coach is putting his most talented players in positions to succeed. This entails of Garoppolo making quick decisive throws to different receivers aggressively down field. In the last six wins, the defense assembled by general manager John Lynch and executive vice president of football operations Paraag Marathe has began to emerge and take into formidable shape.
In terms of how this win will benefit them this year, it doesn’t. As a 49ers fan, the hope and excitement is in the future and what it’ll bring for the team.