For one shining quarter, the Chip Kelly offense lived up to its hype. The 49ers roared out to a 14-0 lead, scoring their second TD one minute into the second quarter. From there on out, it was Cowboys 24 and Niners 3. They were 7 for 7 on third down conversions during their roaring stretch, then reverted to the norm, going 1-7 the rest of the game.
At 1-3, the 49ers are exactly where they were a year ago, a bunch of guys assembled by Trent Baalke who just aren’t very good. The last two number one picks — Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner — spent the game peeling themselves off the turf where the Cowboys O-line had planted them, while Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott ran over them for 138 yards. Armstead did not have even one tackle or assist the entire game. A statistical zero. Perhaps he touched Elliott’s shoelaces while the guy bounded by him.
The leading receiver for the Niners was Detroit castoff Jeremy Kerley, who has surpassed another Baalke pick, Quinton Patton, as the WR starting opposite Torrey Smith. Patton and Smith each had one catch in the game, while Kerley had six.
[We pause now for the obligatory five seconds of face time for backup QB Colon Crapperdick and the two monkey-see-monkey-do idiots partnered with him while the other 2,000+ NFL football players concentrate on the game they’re paid to play and we pay to see. But, hey! What a protest movement. This ranks right up there with five guys parading in front of the Post Office yelling about the price of stamps.]
Back to the train wreck of a once proud franchise sent hurtling off the rails by the scurrilous son of York. Carlos Hyde had a nice 32 yard run Sunday on one of his 15 carries. The other 14, he averaged 3.0 per attempt.
Despite three-quarters of the game belonging almost exclusively to the Cowboys, this was the first game all year that had any drama left in the fourth quarter, right down to the final three yard completion from Blaine Gabbert to Smith on fourth and six in the final two minutes. Bravo guys, the Santa Clara vendors were quite happy to not have to close up their beer stands at the start of the third quarter.
Next up on Thursday night, the reeling Arizona Cardinals, who are almost as bad as the Niners thus far in the 2016 season. A battle for NFL West basement supremacy. Who can resist the drama?