49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

October 5, 2008
49ers-Patriots game-day blog

Here are the 49ers' inactives, the big surprise being Roderick Green. What does that mean? Prepare yourself for the "Big Sub" ...

- QB Jamie Martin, 3rd QB
- CB Shawntae Spencer
- T Jonas Jennings
- LB Roderick Green
- LB Manny Lawson
- LB Ahmad Brooks
- C Cody Wallace
- CB Reggie Smith


-- NE wins toss and defers to 49ers ....Rossum touchback ... 2 TE set to begin ... 49ers go 3 and out, tho they should have had a big play between JTO and Delanie Walker. Pass was too hard, off Walker's fingertips ...

-- Pats take over at own 37 ... Takeo Spikes gets 2nd pick in as many games when Matt Cassel gets hit as he throws ...49ers have been in nickel throughout ...

-- 49ers take over at 45 ... Give it right back on deep pass to Walker. Tipped an int by Pats safety at the 4-yd line

-- Pats go 3 and out, punt is returned by Nate Clements to the 30 yard line.

-- 49ers take over at 30 ... def. holding penalty on 3rd down gives them first at the 16 ... JTO nearly sacked, throws dart to Gore for 16-yard TD ... Gore was working against starting CB Ellis Hobbs on the play -- ran route and caught pass like a wideout. 7-0 49ers...

--- NE takes over at own 32 ...Nolan's not gonna like this one. On 3rd and long, 49ers blitz and Cassel finds Randy Moss deep. Moss runs right past Nate Clements and Walt Harris for 66-yard TD ... 7-7 ... Harris seemed to be playing safety (not well) on the play ...

-- 49ers take over at own 36 ... Perhaps best drive of the season. ... Key play is a 38-yarder to a wide-open Brfuce on 2nd and 6. Two plays later, JTO finds Bruce in the back of the end zone on a six-yard pass. 14-7 49ers ...

-- NE takes over at own 24 ...Sammy Morris having success, a la Deuce McAllister, in the middle of the defense ... Parys Haralson and TBC (!!) sack Cassel on third and four... Pats punt ...

-- 49ers take over at own 20 ... END OF Q


-- 49ers facing 3rd 9 on 21 ... Pass to Bruce is slightly underthrown and dropped ... Punt ..

-- NE takes over at 34 ,,, On first down, Cassel goes deep again to Moss. This time, the ball is badly underthrown and is picked off by Nate Clements at the 49ers 6 yard line ...

-- 49ers take over at 6, go 3 and out, punt ...

-- NE takes over at own 43 ... LaMont Jordan is getting a lot of carries. It seems like teams counter the 49ers' "Big Sub" with their biggest back. Detroit brought in Rudi Johnson, the Saints brought in McAllister and now the Pats are using Jordan and Sammy Morris ... Cassel is sacked on third down by McDonald and settle for field goal, 14-10. 49ers are coming up big on third downs, but NE is dominating the time of possession ...

-- 49ers take over at 15 ... On third and 1, the 49ers get zero push and Gore loses a yard .. Punt ... Not good for T.O.P. battle ... illegal man downfield, NE makes 49ers re-kick Andy Lee's 46 yarder ... Lee BOOMs 82 yarder that rolls into end zone for touchback ...

-- NE takes over at 20 ... Patriots abusing 49ers on the ground and dominating the time of possession. They score a 2-yard TD just before the half. Kentwan Balmer, playing NT on the play, gets scooted aside 5 yards. Ronald Fields also obliterated. Patriots go into the half 17-14 -- they'll also get the ball to open the 2nd half ...

Here's the T.O.P breakdown (and this is not a typo: NE: 20:03, 49ers 9:57 ...


-- NE takes over at own 21 ... 49ers finally come up big on third down when Willis sacks cassel. 49ers sent three blitzers on the play ... Punt ...

-- 49ers give the ball back when JTO locks onto Arnaz Battle and doesn't see Rodney Harrison, who makes an easy interception ... NE takes a page from Miami playbook and gives direct snap to Faulk who runs into end zone on 4th and 2 from the 2-yard line ...

4Q-- 49ers are down 13 and need to score ... Gore takes a direct snap for seven yards ... JTO throws first pass to Vernon Davis -- he drops it ... JTO rises to occassion, hits Bruce again in the back of the end zone. JTO had excellent protection on the play ... NE 27, 49ers 21 ... Was the 49ers' first third-down conversion of the game ..


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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