Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/ Getty Images
San Francisco had creaked into the NFC’s no. 1 overall grain, but the team’s 27 -1 0 defeat of the Vikings showed that they are as complete as any team. No one should be surprised if this team is lifting the Lombardi Trophy in a few weeks.
It’s hard to imagine now how the no. 1 grain in the NFC came down to a series of misstep in the final regular-season game. The NFC was decided by a razor-thin margin, but on Saturday the 49 ers was like one of the most dominant crews in football. Top-seeded San Francisco plucked an old-fashioned ass-whupping on the Vikings, winning 27 -1 0 in a succes that sets the team up to host the NFC championship game in Santa Clara next week.
The third one-fourth was a good reminder of exactly what realise the 49 ers a powerhouse. With San Francisco up 17 -1 0, the Vikings got the ball with 10:42 left, facing a critical possession. Outside of one flukey-looking touchdown to Stefon Diggs during the first quarter, Minnesota hadn’t gotten much going–but they’d managed to hang around, and this was their chance to even the score. But Kirk Cousins soon encountered himself in third-and-9, and then this happened 😛 TAGEND
Whether Adam Thielen stopped too early on this route or Cousins precisely missed on the jettison doesn’t matter much–it looked like Richard Sherman knew the street better than both offensive actors. Sherman has reemerged as an nobility area this year, making Pro Bowl honors for the first time since 2016. Two seasons ago, Sherman bet on himself, signing a self-negotiated contract with plenty of incentives; now he’s arguably the best corner in the NFL. The 31 -year-old was Pro Football Focus’s highest-graded corner this season, giving up 0.44 yards per coverage crack( best in the conference) and one acknowledgment per 19.1 crackings( second best ).
Sherman is the rare type of player who can shut down an part surface of the field, and his interception cut the Vikings’ win probability by half. On the Niners’ ensuing possession, they hastened the clod eight ages in a row and didn’t pass it formerly. The directory of dallies is downright irreverent to Minnesota 😛 TAGEND
Tevin Coleman up the middle-of-the-road for 4 grounds Coleman up the middle-of-the-road for 6 yards Coleman off right tackle for 6 gardens Raheem Mostert up the midriff for 7 grounds Mostert off right tackle for 4 yards Mostert off left tackle for 4 grounds Coleman up the centre for 11 gardens Coleman off right guard for 2 gardens, touchdown
Eight races, 44 yards, three first downs, and a compose. Except for the final touchdown feed , not a single scurry gained less than 4 grounds. Minnesota finished the season with the ninth-best rushing defense by DVOA, and the Niners shredded them.
When the Vikings got the ball back , now down by 14 with 4:49 left in the third quarter, they moved three-and-out. From there, the game began to slip away. While the Minnesota defense snuffed out the 49 ers’ next drive, Vikings punt returner Marcus Sherels muffed the ensue punt, passing the projectile back to San Francisco. That mistake cost the Vikings three parts of their remaining triumph probability 😛 TAGEND
— EdjSports (@ edjsports) January 11, 2020
The 49 ers turned that belonging into a field goal, taking a 27 -1 0 contribute that they never forwent. There was still a one-fourth to play, but the game was over.
The Vikings never had a chance to get back into it because they had no answer for the 49 ers’ defensive direction. Nick Bosa, who will likely be the Defensive Rookie of the Year, had six attacks, two sackings, an additional QB smacked, and a pass attacked. The 49 ers protection as a whole sacked Kirk Cousins a whopping six days for 46 gardens, perfectly stopping the Minnesota offense. The Vikings picked up exactly 147 net yards–less than half of the 49 ers’ total–and proceeded three-and-out on six of their 11 drives( not including the third-down interception, which came on the third play of a drive ). Minnesota had seven first downs and seven punts.
This game showed exactly what induces the 49 ers a powerhouse. They have a dominant justification, fastened by the NFL’s premier lockdown corner and an explosive defensive row. And they have an offense constructed out of versatile, unique playmakers who can slice through great protections even when Jimmy Garoppolo( 11 -of-1 9 for 131 gardens, one touchdown, one select) isn’t having his best game. The Niners are also a well-coached team, and their changes in this game( they snatched cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon in favor of Emmanuel Moseley after Witherspoon get burned during the first quarter) helped keep the team out in front from beginning to end.
The Niners barely made the no. 1 seed–but a year after finishing 4-12, they are every bit the Super Bowl favorite that we’re used to seeing take up each conference’s pole position. Whether they consider the Seahawks or the Packers in the next round, they’ll host a much better team than the Vikings( to say nothing of who they could see in the Super Bowl ), but the 49 ers clearly have the tools to take on anyone. The demolition of the Vikings proved it.
Read more: theringer.com