49ers Blog and Q&A

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

January 22, 2012
Halftime: Giants Cruz-ing 10-7 at the break


Maybe Carlos Rogers shouldn't have mocked Victor Cruz when they met on Nov. 13.

Cruz has eight catches for 125 yards in the first half, most of them against Rogers, and the Giants lead 10-0 at halftime. Cruz has been Eli Manning's favorite target all season, and that has been especially true early in today's game. Manning looked to Cruz throughout New York's final, last-minute drive, which ended in a Lawrence Tynes field goal.

Rogers intercepted Manning twice in Week 10, including on a play intended for Cruz. Rogers mocked Cruz's "salsa dance" end-zone celebration after the interception. However, the veteran has not been quick enough to keep up with Cruz in the middle of the field today.

The 49ers struck first when Vernon Davis and Alex Smith, the heroes of last Saturday's win over the Saints, hooked up on a 73-yard score on second and 10 in the first quarter. Davis caught the ball beyond safety Antrel Rolle at the Giants 42-yard line, then tight-roped his way down the sideline for a 73-yard score. Smith has only completed one other pass this half. He is 2-7 for 79 yards.

Davis then stepped onto a television camera platform behind the end zone, drawing one of his two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties of the half. All of the storylines this week have been how Davis has learned to control his emotions, which got him into trouble early in his career.

The Giants, however, have been very good on third downs and have been able to move the ball against the 49ers. They strung together a 10-play, 69-yard drive which ended with a short, six-yard pass to a wide-open Bear Pascoe.

Perhaps a bright spot for the 49ers is their inside running game. Frank Gore has nine carries for 46 yards, and Smith has four carries for 20 yards. The Giants will get the ball to start the second half.

-- Matt Barrows


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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