Miscues & Mistakes Doom 49ers in 44-23 Embarrassment to Chiefs

Oct 23, 2022, 6:50 PM

SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 23: Clyde Edwards-Helaire #25 of the Kansas City Chiefs scores a ...

SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 23: Clyde Edwards-Helaire #25 of the Kansas City Chiefs scores a touchdown in the third quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on October 23, 2022 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

The San Francisco 49ers are starting the season 3-4 for the second year in a row, losing to the Kansas City Chiefs at home, 44-23.

Sunday’s game started off close with the first half score being 14-13 in favor of Kansas City. The problem was the second half, giving up 30 more points to put the game well out of reach for the Red & Gold.

A once elite defense got lapped up and down the field by quarterback Patrick Mahomes and the visiting offense, surrendering 529 total net yards Sunday.  The offense wan’t much better, stalling out in the second half to only generate 10 points in 30 minutes of football.

By the end of the day, the backups had come in, fans had already exited Levi’s Stadium, and the locker room was as desolate as Week 2 when QB Trey Lance broke his ankle.

“I just feel like we have too many…too many..players that can change the game to only score 23 points,” wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk stated postgame. “We gotta cut down the penalties, mistakes, every individual person has got to look at themselves and worry about what they got to do on each individual play. If we do that, I think we’ll be just fine, until then, I don’t see the room changing.”

That message followed suit with the rest of the team, head coach Kyle Shanahan doubling down on the costly errors and self-inflicted wounds his team allowed.

“The most frustrating thing was the spots we hurt ourselves,” Shanahan acknowledged, beginning to list the mistakes his team made.

A running theme for this team, the 49ers were called for 10 penalties Sunday, totaling out to 80 yards for their opponents. The strange part is that the Chiefs were called for eight penalties, 84 yards. The difference is that the fouls by San Francisco occurred at the worst possible time, giving Mahomes another down that turns into a scoring drive, or on offense, negating a big play for a lackluster holding call.

Those calls allowed Kansas City to take hold of the contest, leaving the 49ers in the dust.

“Just the combination of explosive plays, prolonging drives, self-inflicted wounds. You know on our side, I felt like we just didn’t really give ourselves a chance to win,” a somber Fred Warner said.

A team can overcome penalties, even the 49ers. The problem is that their play was abysmal at times Sunday, particularly in the trenches. On offense, the Chiefs sent zero blitzes that left QB Jimmy Garoppolo exposed as ever, either forcing a bad ball, a sack, or an interception.

The biggest example of this occurred at the end of the second quarter. Garoppolo hike the ball on KC’s six-yard-line, immediately facing a blitz from his blindside.The veteran signal-caller flings the ball towards tight end George Kittle in a panic, getting picked off by a Chief’s cornerback with ease.

A scoring opportunity wasted due to poor decisions and blocking.

“Yes to either [throwing it away or taking the sack]. They got us in zero blitz. Get rid of the ball or take the sack,” Shanahan stated regarding Garoppolo’s decision.

Jimmy G finished the day with 303 yards passing, two touchdowns and one interception.

The defensive line wasn’t much better, only generating one sack and three QB hits all day. A defense formerly considered elite, now has to go back to the drawing board after getting thrashed by Kansas City and Atlanta in consecutive weeks.

“It’s frustrating,”Nick Bosa said, the sole player to tackle Mahomes Sunday. “I think we really haven’t played together as a team, offense and defense yet, special teams [also]. So we need to get clicking on all cylinders if we’re gonna make a run soon.”

Aside from the disappointment, the team’s newest weapon, RB Christian McCaffrey, was featured in Sunday’s contest, registering 62 yards from scrimmage. Only appearing in 22 plays, he’ll need some time to adjust Shanahan’s offense this week and during the bye in Week 9. That’s no excuse for CMC however, maintaining the mentality that you have to be ready when your number is called, no matter what.

“No one cares if I got here two days ago or if I’ve been here since April. If I’m out there with a uniform on, I expect to be prepared and I’m sure my teammates and coaches expect me to be prepared too,” McCaffrey said Sunday. “So you can’t sit there and make excuses and say that, ‘you know I haven’t had a lot of time’, I gotta be ready to go and that was the mindset that I had and just try to keep learning.”

Kyle Shanahan’s 49ers is now 1-30 when trailing by three or more point entering the fourth quarter.

Slated to face the Los Angeles Rams before the Week 9 bye, it’ll be a week of long practices for the Red & Gold, hoping they can right the ship in Southern California.


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