photo from sfgate.com: Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen is sacked by San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa during the first half of an NFL football game in Santa Clara, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019.
By: Joe Lami
SANTA CLARA — For the second time in franchise history, the San Francisco 49ers have started a season 7-0, thanks to a historic 51-13 beat down of the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. It’s the first time since 2003 the Niners put up 50 and just the 12th time in franchise history.
It’s hard to believe that when a team drops a 50-burger, the defense is the first thing that should be mentioned, but that’s the case. No one had a better day than Nick Bosa, who had three sacks and an interception. It marks the first-time in 49ers’ history that a player had accomplished it and the first time since 2017 anyone has done so.
Bosa continues to strengthen his case as a lock for the Defensive Rookie of the Year, but now should be in consideration of Defensive Player of the Year. His teammate, Richard Sherman, agrees, “he’s playing like he’s been in the league for ten years. With what he’s shown so far, he should be in line for the defensive MVP.”
“Since the first day he’s gotten here, he hasn’t changed. No matter how everyone looks at him or how he plays or if he’s hurt or not. He’s always very even-keeled. I think people like that are very impressive. He’s just very confident in himselff. The more he plays, the better he’ll get, as long as he can stay healthy. He’s a special player, definitely hasn’t arrived yet. He has a lot more to go, but he’s been playing extremely well,” added Shanahan.
He was the driving force behind the defense’s incredible performance that included seven combined sacks, nine tackles for loss, nine QB hits, three interceptions, and seven pass break-ups.
Tevin Coleman powered the offense with one receiving and three rushing touchdowns on 118 all-purpose yards. He became the first Niner to score four TDs in a game since Jerry Rice in 1993 and just the third to total four in a single-game.
The offense looked electric on the first drive of the game, where they marched down the field on an 11-play 75-yard drive and wouldn’t look back. Emmanuel Sanders capped off the opening drive with his first touchdown as a member of the 49ers. He finished with three receptions for 19 yards and the touchdown.
“I ran a five-yard out route. The ball was tipped, but it ended up falling right into my hands. It was probably one of the easiest touchdowns I’ve had. It was awesome to get on the opening drive to be a newcomer on this team and be able to open up like that is awesome,” added Sanders.
Sanders’ new addition to the room gives a different perspective of how special this run truly is. “The locker room is just amazing with a great group of players and great personalities. I showed up today, expecting the same results in personality. I’ll never forget going out into the tunnel with these guys. Everybody was laughing and smiling. This is football; this is fun. I’m blessed to be here”.
Deebo Samuel and Raheem Mostert added to the scoring, both with rushing touchdowns.
Jimmy Garoppolo was nearly perfect, throwing 18/22 for 175 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception to Luke Keuchly. He was also sacked three times, including a safety. Following the game, he blamed the pick on a mental error trying to hit George Kittle. Kittle was his primary target, per usual, catching six balls for 86 yards.
Garoppolo continues to spread the ball around incredibly within Shanahan’s offense, as he’s thrown nine touchdowns to nine different receivers on the year.
Christian McCaffrey had the lone touchdown for the Panthers and was one of their only bright spots. He rushed for 117 yards on 14 carries and the score.
Kyle Allen entered the contest undefeated on the season but was quickly outmatched. He was held to just 4.3 yards per attempt, going for 158 yards, completing 19 of 37.
The Niners have to quickly recover and get ready for Thursday, where they will face the 3-4 Cardinals at 5:20 p.m. It won’t be a cakewalk either for San Francisco, as they’ve struggled mightily against Arizona. The Cardinals have owned the series recently, winning the last eight contests and nine of the last ten.