The San Francisco 49ers trampled the Houston Texans in the first half of Sunday night’s exhibition game in Santa Clara, but two costly fumbles — one on the Houston two yard line that prevented a score and one Houston returned for a TD — kept the score close and the Texans in the game. In the second half, the Houston scrubeenies whipped the 49er scrubs 17-0, erasing the Niners 13-7 halftime lead and giving the Texans a 24-13 victory.
After an opening three and out, the 49ers moved the ball at will during the first half. Most of the yardage came from the running game. The passing game looked reasonable on the stat sheet, but wasn’t very impressive through the eyeball lens.
Blaine Gabbert threw a 43 yard TD to TE Vance McDonald, who was covered tightly by a guy lying on the ground, but other than that, Gabbert’s three offensive series were very pedestrian. Thad Lewis and Jeff Driskel played the rest of the game and had their best success handing the ball to a running back.
The 49er defense played very well in the first half, though highly regarded first round pick Deforest Buckner didn’t stand out at all. He was good in backside pursuit, but poor at plays in front of him. The rest of the defense made Houston mega-dollar QB Brock Osweiler look like just another Brock Osweiler.
The game was a virtual sell out, but less than half of the stadium seats were occupied by a real butt. The York legacy at work.
Sixth string RB Kendall Gaskins had an interesting night. He had two runs for three yards, caught two passes for seven yards, and made two tackles while playing defensive back. The Gaskins Fan Club will be open for business this morning.
All in all, it’s great to have football back on our plates. Jim Harbaugh lost his first exhibition game, but Jim Tomsula did, too. We’ll have to wait another week to make premature estimations of which fellow Chip Kelly will most resemble. The winner or the loser.