Some may wonder how the run game got going more than in any other week. When your quarterback connects 18 of 24 times for 241 and two touchdowns AND runs 5 times for 19 yards and is sacked only once, defenses get caught off-guard. There should be no doubt left that Freeman is giving Vick, Rodgers and Brees a run for their Pro Bowl spots. Even with the fumble, Freeman’s velocity was as sharp as his decision-making.
You have to go beyond the statline. He had 4 catches for 68 yards but his deep speed and physicality get him to draw safeties and other help wherever he goes. He also had a key block on a long Blount run.
Elbert Mack made a big hit, Talib showed great closing speed. They may have allowed Jimmy Clausen to have his most efficient day as a pro but the defense’s ability to clamp down in the red zone and limit the damage helped win them the game. They also overcame 2 turnovers by the offense and special teams.
They go into face a San Francisco team that has its own scrambling, magic-making quarterback in Troy Smith. As bad as the NFC West is, if the 49ers lose today there would be no reason to be experimental or play the back-ups to see what they’ve got. At 2-7, they’d still be in it. San Francisco always shows up and plays hard.