Rookies Shine While Injuries and Penalties Concern 49ers in 17-9 Win

file photo by sfgate.com: San Francisco 49ers quarterback Nick Mullens, right, throws a pass at the team’s NFL football training camp in Santa Clara, Calif., Monday, July 29, 2019

By: Joe Lami

SANTA CLARA — Despite sitting nearly 30 players in their pre-season opener, the 49ers couldn’t stay away from the injury bug on Saturday night’s 17-9 win over the Cowboys.

Expected swing lineman, Shon Coleman, went down during San Francisco’s third offensive play of the game. Ruled with an ankle injury, he was put in an air cast and carted off the field.

The injury to the back-up tackle could be a huge storyline this season since he’s listed as the number two to both LT Joe Staley and RT Mike McGlinchey.

Reports also surfaced during the game that wide receiver Trent Taylor had surgery on a broken pinkie toe on Friday. He’s expected to miss the entirety of the pre-season but hopes to come back early in the regular season via a message from Instagram.

Both running back Raheem Mostert and defensive lineman DJ Jones went down for the conclusion of the contest. Mostert suffered a concussion, while Jones went out with a knee.

The battle for the back-up quarterback spot has been highlighted through camp so far. Despite their records, both Nick Mullens and CJ Beathard are neck and neck heading into the first game.

Mullens played the entire first half on Saturday night, throwing 11 of 17 for 105 yards, a touchdown, and an interception. Mullens found third-round rookie Jalen Hurd for the half’s only touchdown. Chalk the interception up to Mullens getting hit during a throw.

CJ Beathard saw the field in the second half. On his first drop back, he was sacked for five yards but fared better as his night went on. Finishing 13 of 17 for 145 yards, Beathard threw a pick and a TD to Hurd.

The Niners defense held up for the most part. Bending at most times but not breaking, they forced the Cowboys to kick three field goals. Dak Prescott started the first drive for Dallas, going four-of-four for 23 yards before stalling and forced to kick a field goal.

Penalties once again remain a concern for the Niners and could be a significant sign of things to come, as they committed 18 penalties for 216 yards. In both seasons under Kyle Shanahan, the 49ers have finished in the bottom third of the NFL in penalties committed and Saturday night was glaring.

Rookie Spotlight

Three rookies made an impression on Saturday night. Linebacker Dre Greenlaw made the immediate impression; tallying five tackles in the first half, including four on Cowboys’ opening drive. His pursuit is noticeable and it’s obvious the fifth-round pick from Arkansas has a nose for the football.

At times, he over pursuits; picking up a roughing the passer penalty after getting to the QB too late. However, on the next play, he continued to show aggressiveness getting a tackle for loss.

Jalen Hurd’s first catch in a 49er uniform found paydirt. After a play-action rollout from Mullens, Hurd broke one tackle and battled through another defender past the goal line. Hurd added his second of the night when Beathard found him in the left corner of the end zone to start the fourth quarter.

After spending three seasons at Tennessee as a running back, Hurd converted to wide receiver while transferring to Baylor. The 6-foot-5-inch receiver has the size and means streak to become San Francisco’s answer to poor red-zone performance.

We saw second-round pick Debo Samuel get the ball once, but the kid can fly. He was able to turn the corner on a jet sweep and pick up 14 yards like it was nothing. In the third quarter, he climbed the ladder on a 45-yard reception hopping over a Cowboys’ DB to make the snag.

He finished for a combined 75 yards on five touches. He will be fun to watch as the pre-season continues.

Raiders Report: Raiders good enough to hang but can’t finish

Cowboys Raiders Football

by David Zizmor

ALAMEDA–The Raiders had a good start and were actually leading at the half 21-14 but the Cowboys kicked into gear and the Raiders weren’t able to stop them on the other side of the ball and the Raiders offense couldn’t get anything going in the second half. It was a tale of two halves in this one the Raiders looked pretty solid in the first half in fact one of the drives in the second quarter.

One of the Raiders scoring drives they basically held the ball for 12 minutes out of 15 minutes the entire second quarter. They didn’t even let Dallas get the ball but Dallas marched down the field really quickly at the end of the half to score a touchdown with ten seconds left from that point on Dallas seemed to get their second wind and the Cowboys dominated the rest of the way.

The Raiders has some great plays on special teams to start this one out with the return as the Raiders recovered a fumble on the opening kick off and returned it for a touchdown and that set the tone early on it kind of stunned the Cowboys more than anything and for the next quarter and a half the Raiders were really playing really well. When the Cowboys scored at the end of the first half it just kind of rolled into the second half. The Raiders defense wasn’t able to stop them and the Raiders know that the Cowboys have a pretty solid offense.

Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo threw for 220 yards, the Cowboys rushed for 140 yards and it was one of those situations where the Raiders defense wasn’t able to stop anybody and while Raider quarterback Matt McGloin looked pretty solid in the first half completing some really solid passes and making some plays here and there he just couldn’t do anything in the second half and McGloin just didn’t seem to be able to do anything in the second half.

So you look at McGloin’s stats and he was 18-30 for 255 yards with one interception and no touchdowns and it’s really tough to gage how he played in this one he really looked good in the first half and made some tough throws and in the second half he just wasn’t hitting any of those and it wasn’t just the receivers who were dropping passes though that did happen on occasion and he wasn’t as accurate in that second half and part of that were the adjustments on the part of Dallas.

Dallas is still a better team and the Raiders defense is okay this year but teams are starting to catch up and injuries are up and down with this team on offense and defense and their starting to take their toll and it was great that the Raiders were able to hand in this one especially on a short week on Thanksgiving day on the road but that’s a tough game to play. You kind of feel for the Raiders because that’s just a tough situation to be in and it’s unfortunate that they had to be the team that had to be the sacrificial lamb on Thanksgiving.

The simple fact is that you got to win those games and Dallas isn’t such a good team that the Raiders weren’t able to beat them and the Raiders certainly can hang with them the bottom line is they come away with a loss that just puts them further behind heading into next week’s game against the New York Jets and we’ll see how the Raiders can do in that one.

David Zizmor covers the NFL for Sportstalk Radio