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NFC West Week 2 Recap

Graphic by Robert Robinson

By: David Connors @DConBlitz

San Francisco 49ers (2-0) at Cincinnati Bengals (0-2)

Final Score: 49ers 41, Bengals 17

Notable Performances:

San Francisco 49ers

Matt Breida (RB): 12 carries, 121 rushing yds, 10.1 YPC, 1 rec. on 1 target, 11 rec. yds.

Raheem Mostert (RB): 13 carries, 83 rushing yds, 6.4 YPC, 3 rec. on 4 targets, 68 rec. yds. 1 rec. TD

Deebo Samuel (WR): 5 Receptions on 7 targets, 87 rec. yds, 1 rec. TD.

Kwon Alexander (LB): 6 tackle (3 solo), 3 PD, 1 INT.

Cincinnati Bengals

Andy Dalton (QB): 26/42, 311 Passing yds, 7.4 YPA, 2 Pass TD, 1 INT, 2 carries,, 2 rush yds.

Tyler Boyd (WR): 10 rec. on 10 targets, 122 rec. yds

John Ross III (WR): 4 Receptions on 8 targets, 112 rec. yds, 1 TD.

Williams Jackson (CB): 1 tackles (0 solo), 1 PD, 1 INT


Two weeks into the NFL season, the 49ers look ready to take the next steps in their rebuild. They are 2-0 to start the season, while still having 8 home games left in their schedule. The 49ers offense played a superior game in the trenches. Kyle Shanahan established a relentless running game racking up 259 yards on the ground. All three running backs on San Francisco’s roster seemed to be granted wide-open lanes to run through. The running game led to open targets on play-action plays. This, plus only being pressure twice the entire game, allowed Jimmy Garoppolo to pick the Bengals apart. The 49ers offense could do whatever they wanted to throughout the game.

The 49ers defense took advantage of the Bengals offensive line to the tune of 4 sacks, 8 QB pressures, and 8 tackles for a loss. It seemed like there was a 49er jersey in the backfield the moment Andy Dalton hiked the ball. The 49er forced the Bengals into an early deficit making the Bengals to abandon their run game. Fortunately, Zac Taylor’s pseudo-McVay offense was able to find some success. However, a junk time long touchdown pass to as the 4th Quarter ended made the game seem closer than it actually was.

Although the Bengals look like a bottom tier team this season, San Francisco’s dominance will definitely put the rest of the NFC on alert.

Injury Update:

San Francisco 49ers

Dee Ford (DE)-came out and missed 2nd half

Quadricep (Questionable)

Nick Bosa (DE)

Ankle (Questionable)

Jimmie Ward (CB)

Hand (Questionable)

Jaquiski Tartt (S)

Toe (Questionable)

Jalen Hurd (WR)

Back (Out)

Joe Staley (T)-went out in 3rd Quarter

Fibula (Out)

Cincinnati Bengals

Andre Smith (T)-came out in first half

Groin (Questionable)

Michael Jordan (G)-carted off in 4th quarter

Knee (Questionable)

Carl Lawson (DE)-left in 2nd half

Hamstring (Doubtful)

Kerry Wynn (DE)

Concussion (Out)

B.W. Webb (CB)

Forearm (Out)

Cordy Glenn (T)

Concussion (Out)

AJ Green (WR)

Ankle (Out)

Ryan Glasgow (DT)

Thigh (Out)

Next Week:

The 49ers head back to San Francisco for their home opener to play the Pittsburgh Steelers. The 49ers stayed in Youngstown, OH leading into their week 2 matchup, therefore this will be their first time back in California since the start of the season. The 49ers will try and take advantage of Mason Rudolph as the 2nd year quarterback makes his first start of his career to stay undefeated.

Cincinnati heads to Buffalo to take on the undefeated Bills in Week 3. After taking a decisive loss, the Bengals will try to lick their wounds, regroup, and prepare for a Buffalo team that is off to a great start to the season.

Seattle Seahawks (2-0) at Pittsburgh Steelers (0-2)

Final Score: Seahawks 28, Steelers 26

Notable Performances:

Seattle Seahawks

Russel Wilson(QB): 29/35, 300 passing yds, 8.6 YPA, 3 TDs, 6 carries, 22 rush yds.

Rashaad Penny (RB): 10 carries, 62 rushing yds, 6.2 YPC, 1 TD, 1 rec. on 1 target, 3 rec. yds.

Will Dissly (TE): 5 rec. on 5 targets, 50 rec. yds, 2 TDs

Branden Jackson (DE): 3 tackles (3 solo), 2 QB hits, 1 sack, 1 TFL.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Mason Rudolph (QB): 12/19, 112 Passing yds, 5.9 YPA, 2TDs, 1 INT, 1 carry, 7 rushing yds.

Juju Smith-Schuster (WR): 5 rec. on 8 target, 84 rec. yds.

Vance McDonald (TE): 7 rec. on 7 targets, 38 rec. yds, 2 TDs

Stephen Tuitt (DE): 4 tackles (3 solo), 3 QB hits, 2.5 sacks, 2 TFL


The Seahawks and Steelers played a closely contested match where both front sevens created havoc for the opposing defenses. The Seahawks were able to squeak out ahead behind Russel Wilson’s grit and run the time off the clock to go 2-0.

The Steelers Defensive line were able to get early penetration against Seattle in this game. As a team the Steelers were able to hit Wilson 6 times and rack up 4 sacks along with 8 tackles for a loss. They Steeler forced Seahawks Running Back, Chris Carson, to fumble twice which lead to Rashaad Penny seeing a lot more work. The Seahawks were fortunate to have a few bounces go their way including an interception by Bradley McDougald that was thrown right into the chest of Donte Moncrief but tipped into Bradley’s awaiting arms. This gave the Seahawks great field position for Russel Wilson to find Tight End, Will Dissly in the back of the End Zone for his 2nd touchdown catch of the game. Two drives later Wilson found rookie Wide Receiver, D.K. Metcalf for a long 28-yard touchdown throw and catch. Even with a late fumble by Russel Wilson that brought the Steelers within 2, the Seahawks were able to ice the clock and leave Pittsburgh with a win, and their best start to a season in six years.

The Seahawks defense forced the Steelers to make quick plays, then swarmed to the ball carrier. Fortunately, the Steelers were able to capitalize on a fumble by Carson to get out to an early lead. However, with a 10-7 lead going into half, tragedy struck. Future hall of fame QB Ben Rothlisberger had to watch 2nd year QB, Mason Rudolph, lead the Steelers through the second half. Besides a few ”rookie mistakes” Rudolph made really good throws including a flea-flicker to Juju Smith-Schuster for 45 yards. Diontae Johnson had the play of the game with an insane diving catch on an off-target pass for 17 yards to start the 4th quarter. The Steelers were able to make the game close when Wilson fumbled deep in the fourth quarter. Steelers 1st round rookie Devin Bush scooped it up and brought it back 11 yards to put the Steelers on the 3-yard line to score. Unfortunately, the Seahawks were able to do enough to preserve their 2 point lead.

This was an incredible game with huge plays and chilling hits. The Seahawks were able to edge out a win, however, this could have gone either way had the ball bounces differently on a few plays.

Injury Update

Pittsburgh Steelers

Ben Rothlisberger (QB)-came out and missed 2nd half

Elbow (Out)-Place on IR

Vince Williams (LB) had to leave the game

Hamstring (Out)

James Conner (RB) had to leave game

Knee (Probable)

Anthony Chickillo (LB) had to leave the game

Foot (Out)

Roosevelt Nix (FB)

Knee (Out)

Seattle Seahawks

DJ Fluker (G) left game in 2nd Quarter, but returned in 2nd half

Ankle (probable)

Ethan Pocic (G)

Neck (Doubtful)

Neiko Thorpe (CB)

Hamstring (Doubtful )

Tedric Thompson (S)

Hamstring (Questionable)

Tre Flowers (CB)

Ankle (Questionable)

Rashaad Penny (RB)

Hamstring (Questionable)

Next Week

The Seahawks head back west to prepare for the New Orleans Saints who will be lead by their backup QB, Teddy Bridgewater. Seattle will hope the 12th man of CenturyLink Stadium will help them continue their winning streak.

The Steelers hope to rally behind their backup QB Mason Rudolph as they head west to take on San Francisco at Levi Stadium.

Arizona Cardinals (0-2) at Baltimore Ravens (2-0)

Final Score: Ravens 23, Cardinals 17

Notable Performances:

Baltimore Ravens

Lamar Jackson (QB): 24/37, 272 yds, 7.4 YPA, 2 TDs, 16 carries, 120 rushing yds.

Marquise Brown (WR): 8 rec. on 13 targets, 86 rec. yds.

Mark Andrews (TE): 8 rec. on 9 targets, 112 rec. yds.

Brandon Carr (CB): 7 tackles (6 solo), 1 QB hit, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 PD.

Arizona Cardinals

Kyler Murray (QB): 25/40, 349 yds, 8.7 YPA, 3 carries, 4 rushing yds.

Christian Kirk (WR): 6 rec. on 8 targets, 114 rec. yards.

Larry Fitzgerald (WR): 5 rec. on 11 targets, 104 rec. yards.

Budda Baker (S): 11 tackles (7 solo), 1 FF


The Cardinals inability to convert in the Red Zone lead to the demise of Arizona in this week 2 matchup in Baltimore. The Cardinals could not break the plain in their first 3 trips into the Red Zone. The Ravens front seven saw no resistance from the Cardinals in the trenches. Kyler Murray was seemingly throwing off his back foot every play. Even while under duress, Kliff Kingsbury’s offense was able to find success with his spread offense that featured a lot of four receiver sets. One of the miraculous plays came in the first quarter. Kyler Murray threw a bullet pass off target, and Larry Fitzgerald just snagged it out of the air with one hand. In a critical 3rd and 9 situation 6th round rookie Wide Receiver, KeeSean Johnson, played the unlikely hero. Murray chucks a ball up off his back foot, and Johnson makes a sick adjustment to get favorable positioning over the corner and come down with the YOLO ball for 31 yards.

The Raven’s cheat code, Lamar Jackson, keeps the Cardinals defense guessing to help spring the Ravens to the top of the AFC North at 2-0. Lamar’s rookie tendencies to egregiously overthrow wide open receivers popped up a little in this game, nevertheless, they are becoming fewer and far between. In the 1st quarter, Lamar overthrew Marquise Brown on the sideline on 4th down. However, the timing seemed to get better as the game went on. In the last drive of the game, Jackson dropped a dime on Brown who was covered well by Tramaine Brock, but the ball fell perfectly over Brown’s shoulder in stride for 41 yards. Lamar Jackson and Mark Andrews continues to be in sync connecting on 8 of 9 targets averaging 14 yards a catch.

The Cardinals offense is able to move the ball between the 20s in spite of poor offensive line play. Unfortunately, the instant penetration by the Ravens defense kept the Cardinals out of End Zone and allowed Baltimore to hold on for another win.

Injury Update:

Arizona Cardinals

David Johnson (RB)-left in 1st Quarter, but returned to game

Wrist (Probable)

Jonathan Bullard (DE)

Hamstring (Questionable)

Lamont Gallard (OL)

Knee (Out)

Chris Jones (CB)

Ankle (Questionable)

Ezekiel Turner (LB)

Hand/Hamstring (Questionable)

Baltimore Ravens

Brynden Trawick (S)-left game

Elbow (Out)

Mark Andrews (TE)

Foot (Questionable)

Patrick Ricard (FB/DL)

Back (Questionable

Jimmy Smith (CB)

Knee (Out)

What's Next

The Cardinals are hoping they beat up on the 0 and 2 Panthers in Arizona to get in the win column. The Panthers will be without Cam Newton as they face off in the desert.

The Ravens will have the eyes of the nation as they take on the undefeated Chiefs. The Ravens are 1st (82) and 4th (68) in points scored this season. This matchup will feature 2 electric young QBs in Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson. Fireworks are sure to fly at Arrowhead Stadium.

New Orleans Saints (1-1) at Los Angeles Rams (2-0)

Final Score: Rams 27, Saints 9

Notable Performances:

Los Angeles Rams

Todd Gurley (RB): 16 carries, 63 rushing yds, 3.9 YPC, 3 rec. on 4 targets, 4 rec. yds.

Cooper Kupp (WR): 5 rec. on 9 targets, 120 rec. yds, 1 carry, 6 rushing yds.

Brandon Cooks (WR): 3 rec. on 4 targets, 74 rec. yds, 1 TD, 1 carry, 2 rushing yds.

Clay Matthews (DE): 3 tackles (3 Solo), 1 QB hit, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 FF.

New Orleans Saints

Alvin Kamara (RB): 13 carries, 45 rushing yds, 3.5 YPC, 1 rec. on 3 targets, 15 rec. yds.

Michael Thomas (WR): 10 rec. on 13 targets, 89 rec. yds.

Cameron Jordan (DE): 5 tackles (5 solo), 2 QB hits, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 FR.

Trey Hendrickson (DE): 2 tackles (2 solo), 1 QB hit, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 FF.


The Saints have forgotten to make their sacrifice to the football gods. Their run of bad luck has been relentless. The Saint lose the future Hall of Fame QB to an injury on his throwing hand. The Rams were able to take advantage of the situation to stroll into a quick 2 and 0 start.

On their first drive, Jared Cook tips a perfect pass into the awaiting arms of John Johnson. Three plays later Jared Goff puts a dime on Brandin Cooks for 57 yards. The very next drive Drew Brees had to come out of the game. Backup QB Teddy Bridgewater struggled to find open receivers against a very stingy Rams defense only completing 17 of his 30 throws. The biggest play of the game came in 2nd quarter the Saints were victim to poor officiating AGAIN! Trey Hendrickson got to Jared Goff to knock the ball out, and Cam Jordan scoops the ball and runs it for what seems to be a defensive touchdown. Unfortunately, the referees called the play an incomplete pass blowing the play dead before it could develop.

After trading Field Goals for the first half of the game, the Rams make some noise on their second drive of the 2nd half and are able to cap off the drive with a 4 yard run to the pylon for Todd Gurley to get his first touchdown on the season. Cooper Kupp stole the show for the Rams offense with quite a few incredible plays. Many would never guess Kupp is coming off an ACL tear the season before. In the 2nd quarter, Kupp snagged a bullet out of the air while diving for a 1st down. However, his most impressive play came in the 4th quarter. Kupp makes a quick double move in Saint CB, Marshon Lattimore, to get inside and takes a short pass 66 yards to the 1-yard line.

What looked to be a game of NFL juggernauts, became a blow out once the Saints lost their starting QB. The Rams are able to get the win to remain tied with the 49ers and Seahawks at the top of the NFC West.

Injury Update

New Orleans Saints

Drew Brees (QB)-left in the 1st quarter

Hand (Out)

Andrus Peat (G)-left in the 1st half

Ankle (Probably)

Kirk Kirkwood (WR)-injured during pregame workouts

Hamstring (Out)

Tre’Quan Smith (WR)

Ankle (Out)

Sheldon Rankins (DT)

Achilles (Out)

Los Angeles Rams

Aaron Donald (DT)-went out in first half but returned to the game

Back (Questionable)

Austin Blythe (G)-left game in first half

Ankle (Questionable)

Tyler Higbee (TE)-left game early in the second half

Chest (Out)

What's Next

The Saints stay out west as they go into CenturyLink Stadium to take on the Seahawks and the 12th Man. They will need to gameplan for their inexperienced backup QB if they want to keep up with a very competitive NFC South.

The Rams head into Cleveland to take on America’s sweethearts. The Browns have been up and down after getting embarrassed by the Titans, then enforcing their will against the Jets. The Rams will provide a great test to see where they stand. The Rams would like nothing more than to send the Browns back to the kids’ table.


LA Rams / 2-0 / +21pts / W2

SF 49ers / 2-0 / +38pts / W2

Seahawks / 2-0 / +3 / W2

Cardinals / 0-1-1 / -6 / L1

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