Smith and Montana names in same sentence


Smith and Montana names in same sentence

After an uneven first half, the 49ers' passing game got going in the second half Saturday in a 19-17 victory over the host Seattle Seahawks.And in the process, quarterback Alex Smith was credited with his fifth come-from-behind victory of the season -- and his fourth on the road. Smith tied Joe Montana for the most fourth-quarter comebacks in a single season in franchise history. Montana led four road comebacks in 1989.Smith completed just 5 of 16 first-half pass attempts for 43 yards in the first half. And he didn't get much help with a couple of dropped passes along the way.
But Smith, and the 49ers' offense as a whole, rallied in the second half. He finished with 14 completions on 26 attempts for 179 yards with no touchdown and no interceptions.Afterward, Smith met the media. Here is what he said:On the offense's production in the third quarter.
"They were playing us tough on the outside, a lot of man-to-man and press. It really felt like, especially that two-minute drive at the end of the half, it really felt like as we were playing I had a lot of backs turned to me and it felt like I could have moved the chains better at the end of the half and we took advantage of it in the second half. I kind of had it in my head. If they were going to play that way I was going to try to use my legs."On if the game felt like a playoff-type atmosphere.
"Yeah, absolutely. We know what was on the line. You hear all the talk coming out here all week. They were playing for their playoff lives and as you can see they threw everything at us. This is about as hostile an environment as it gets, I think. It's a tough place to play. I don't think we've won here for a few years. It's always going to be tough, especially when there's something on the line for both teams."On what was going through his mind after the Seahawks took the lead on Marshawn Lynch's TD run following the blocked punt by Heath Farwell.
"Obviously there was a little shift in momentum there with the punt block and then the score. But we got good field position. We had a decent amount of time on the clock. I'll tell you the truth, I don't know what that call was. I don't know how you throw the ball out of bounds to somebody and get offensive pass interference, it seemed like a pretty phantom call to me, but you deal with it. We had been talking about it all day we hadn't taken a shot. They were playing us aggressive and we knew they were trying to stop us before we took a shot. Michael (Crabtree) made a great play and got us in field goal position to win us the game."On making the decision to take a shot down field.
"We were just talking about it on the sideline and we knew at some point we were going to have to go after them and take that shot. We made the play when it counted."On if the fourth-and-2 play-call was originally for Vernon Davis.
"We ended up getting the holding call on that as well and we declined it. We came back to Vernon he wasn't the primary. He made a great play"On Delanie Walker and Kyle Williams getting hurt.
"I hope those guys get back healthy as soon as possible. I don't anything about the details of it."On if he saw Delanie Walker after the game.
"I haven't seen him yet, but obviously he does quite a bit for us run and pass."On the deep pass to Crabtree that set up the game-winning field goal.
"This all the way was Crabtree. With the look we got -- I had Vernon (Davis) on my right with a corner on him and had the matchup on the left with Crabtree that we liked and took the shot and he made a great play."(Transcription provided by the Seattle Seahawks public relations department.)

Reports: Former 49ers wide receiver to visit Bills


Reports: Former 49ers wide receiver to visit Bills

Aquan Boldin is looking for a new football home.

And the former 49ers wide receiver is visiting with the Bills on Monday, according to multiple reports.

Boldin started all 16 games with the Lions last season, recording 67 catches for 584 yards and eight touchdowns.

From 2013 to 2015 with the 49ers, he racked up 237 receptions, 3030 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns.

The three-time Pro Bowler will turn 37 years old in October.

Boldin entered the NFL as the 54th overall pick in the 2003 draft.

Taking a closer look at Ryan's criticism of Shanahan


Taking a closer look at Ryan's criticism of Shanahan

There is no shortage of blame to go around for the Atlanta Falcons’ collapse in Super Bowl 51.

The Falcons built a 28-3 lead in the middle of the third quarter and let it slip away, ultimately falling to the New England Patriots, 34-28, in overtime.

Matt Ryan voiced one previously undisclosed factor in the collapse this week in an interview with Pete Prisco of CBS Sports, pointing the finger at the new coach of the 49ers.

Kyle Shanahan has been the focus of a lot of the blame, but critique from the league MVP was a new one.

The Falcons quarterback faulted his former offensive coordinator for taking too much time to relay the play calls. Ryan said he did not have enough time to change any of the plays – presumably checking out of called pass plays to run the ball.

Here’s what Ryan told Prisco:

"Kyle's play calls -- he would take time to get stuff in. As I was getting it, you're looking at the clock and you're talking 16 seconds before it cuts out. You don't have a lot of time to say, 'There's 16 seconds, no, no, no, we're not going to do that. Hey, guys, we're going to line up and run this.' You're talking about breaking the huddle at seven seconds if you do something along the lines.

"With the way Kyle's system was set up, he took more time to call plays and we shift and motion a lot more than we did with (former coordinator) Dirk (Koetter). You couldn't get out of stuff like that. We talk about being the most aggressive team in football. And I'm all for it. But there's also winning time. You're not being aggressive not running it there."

The 49ers can point to mismanagement of the clock for their own Super Bowl heartbreak. The 49ers’ offense had the perfect play call at the perfect time against the Baltimore Ravens late in Super Bowl XLVII.

But with the play clock striking :00, coach Jim Harbaugh was forced to call a timeout from the sideline. A split-second later, the ball was snapped and it appeared the quarterback run would have easily ended up with Colin Kaepernick in the end zone.

Much like after the 49ers’ loss, the Falcons left plenty of room for second-guessing.

Two of Shanahan’s plays calls, which directly led to the collapse, will forever be scrutinized.

The first came with 8:31 remaining in regulation and the Falcons holding a 28-12 lead. On third and 1 from the Atlanta 36, Shanahan did not remain conservative with an expected run play. He swung for the fence.

Receiver Aldrick Robinson, whom the 49ers added this offseason as a free-agent pickup, was breaking free past the Patriots secondary for what could have been a touchdown. But just as Ryan was unloading, New England linebacker Dont’a Hightower hit him and forced the fumble. Running back Devonta Freeman whiffed on blitz pickup, which would have provided Ryan with enough time to target Robinson deep.

Ryan’s explanation does not appear applicable on this play, though. In watching the replay, the Falcons broke the huddle with more than 25 seconds remaining on the play clock and the snap occurred with :15 to spare.

The other questionable sequence came after the Falcons – leading by eight points -- got to the New England 22-yard line with less than five minutes to play. The Falcons lost 1 yard on a run play on first down.

On second down, Ryan was sacked for a 12-yard loss. Before that play, the Falcons broke the huddle with :19 on the play clock. The snap occurred with :04 remaining. The game clock was running, so the Falcons had reason to attempt to burn as much clock as possible.

In the fourth quarter, the Falcons never seemed rushed to get off a play. The closest they came to delay-of-game penalties were when they snapped the ball with :04 on the one play and :03 another time. The majority of their snaps occurred with :10 or more seconds to spare.

If the Falcons were guilty of anything when it came to the play clock, it was that the offense did not waste more time. After New England pulled to within 28-9 late in the third quarter, the Falcons ran only six offensive plays while the game clock was running.

On those six plays, the Falcons snapped the ball with :13, :09, :14, :20, :13 and :04 remaining on the play clock. If they’d snapped the ball with one second remaining each time, they could have shortened the game by 1 minute, 7 seconds. The Patriots scored the game-tying touchdown with :57 remaining in regulation.