As noted by our astute commenters, sometimes ugly can be beautiful, and this game truly was. Probably the most gorgeous ugly victory of the year.
Washington conjured up a squall for this game, which tilted the odds their way since nobody could pass worth a shit. That crippled Kyle Shanahan‘s offense without nicking Washington’s much at all. They’re a ground and pound team, while the 49ers’ ground game is more of a finesse and deception effort.
Each team missed a FG in the first half, and Washington drove down to the Niner 28, where Adrian Peterson was stuffed by Julian Taylor on a 4th and 1 play. The only other time Washington threatened to score, Peterson was again the victim, as Kwon Alexander forced him to fumble and Taylor (our hero) picked it up and rumbled ten yards before he was mercifully tackled.
Washington never got close again. The 49ers pitched a shutout and three second half Robbie Gould FGs made the final score seem like a rout. Sort of. Delusionally speaking.
The defense had three sacks in the game – one each by Dee Ford, Arik Armstead, and the close out sack by Nick Bosa, who showed some humor by doing a slip & slide across the rain besotted turf. Three sacks doesn’t sound overpowering, but Case Keenum only threw twelve passes in the entire game. Smart move. Or he’d probably have been carted off the field at some point, heading for the smelling salts tent.
As an added bonus to the day, our bird friends up north got pecked to death by the bird fellows from Baltimore. I gotta admit it was pretty hilarious to see Russell Wilson out dipsy-doodled by Lamar Jackson, giving the Seahawks a taste of their own medicine. Two offenses entirely dependent on QBs who dart around until somebody gets open. Jackson won’t last long in this league running around crazily game after game, but he lasted this game, pushing the Seahawks back a full game further in the NFC West.
The going gets tougher down the road, with games against the Packers, Ravens, Saints, and of course two games against Seattle. Just how real the 49ers are will be revealed during that run of bona fide contenders.