49ers 9 Seahawks 12 Takeaways
The San Francisco 49ers dropped to 0-2 after losing a hard fought battle with division rival Seattle Seahawks 12-9 in what turned out to be a defensive showdown. Getting over the hump and winning a game at hostile Century Link Field still eludes the 49ers as they have now lost six straight regular season games there. But despite being two touchdown underdogs coming into the contest, the 49ers stood toe-to-toe with Seattle for a majority of the game and displayed signs of better days to come for the organization.
This is a young and very talented 49ers squad that will only get better as each game goes on, but will also experience growing pains in the process as is the case so far this NFL season. How long it will take for the 49ers as a team to gel more cohesively remains to be seen, and they will have a short week to right the ship as they will host another division rival in the Los Angeles Rams this Thursday. Buy until then, here are some takeaways from Week 2.
Brian Hoyer Continues to Struggle
For a second straight week, 49ers quarterback Brian Hoyer has had a rough time developing a rhythm on offense. At times the veteran quarterback held on to the ball too long inside the pocket and didn’t take any deep shots downfield against Seattle. If the 49ers offense hopes to score points this season, Hoyer must assert himself and play with a cool head.
Third Down Efficiency Woes Continue
The 49ers offense continued not doing any favors for their defensive teammates by going 2-for-12 on third down conversions. Offensive inefficiency on third down can cause strain on a defensive unit, especially if the offense isn’t stringing together time-consuming drives to give their defense a nice rest. The 49ers can not expect to be successful on offense if there is no execution.
Carlos Hyde’s Big Day
The one bright spot on offense for the 49ers was the running game led by running back Carlos Hyde, who rushed for 124 yards on 15 carries. Hyde consistently found running lanes through Seattle’s front seven and picked up huge chunk of yards in the process, including a career-high 61 yard run which was a thing of beauty. Playing in a contract year, Hyde has a lot to prove this year and it will be very interesting to see what level the fourth-year veteran can reach if Hoyer can somehow get the 49ers passing game going.
Defense Keeps 49ers in Game
A week after the 49ers front seven couldn’t generate any pressure on quarterback Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers, the defense this week answered the call and for the most part held the Seahawks offense in check. The 49ers defense sacked Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson three times and made the Seahawks offense earn every yard they obtained. The unit is still a work in process as there were a few times on third down that the defense created ill-advised penalties to bail out the Seahawks offense to keep drives going, but one thing for certain is the 49ers defense has a lot of personnel who know how to swarm to the ball and make stops.
Still No Touchdown
For the second consecutive week, the 49ers failed to score a touchdown. There not only needs to be a sense of urgency of more consistency, but the 49ers have to start cashing in when they reach the end zone.
Eric Reid Injury Update
49ers strong safety Eric Reid suffered what looked to be a knee injury during the second quarter Sunday but did return to play in the third quarter. Reid, however, hurt his knee again in the fourth quarter and did not return after that. No word on Reid’s status yet, but more should be known on Monday.
Boost on Special Teams
The special teams return game showed promised Sunday with both fifth-round rookie draft pick wide receiver Trent Taylor and undrafted rookie free agent wide receiver Victor Bolden Jr. On punt returns, Taylor returned three punts for a respectable average of 13 yards per return while Bolden returned three kickoff for an average of 23 yards (his longest return was 34 yards). The fact that both Taylor and Bolden possess good speed and vision can bold well for the 49ers trying to win field position battles in the future.