Maiocco's Instant Replay: 49ers 45, Bills 3


Maiocco's Instant Replay: 49ers 45, Bills 3


SAN FRANCISCO -- Given the honor of throwing out the first pitch prior to the San Francisco Giants' playoff game Saturday night against the Cincinnati Reds, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith was off the mark.He climbed atop the mound at AT&T Park and promptly delivered a pitch that was outside the strike zone and in the dirt. It was met with many groans from the sold-out crowd.Apparently, he was saving his strikes for Sunday.MAIOCCO: Alex Smith opens with best half of his career
Smith had the best regular-season game of his career in a 38-3 victory over the overmatched Buffalo Bills at Candlestick Park.Smith completed 18 of 24 pass attempts for 303 yards and three touchdowns. It's the first time in eight NFL seasons that Smith has thrown for 300 yards or more in a 49ers victory.His passer rating was a perfect 158.3 -- the first time he has ever achieved that mark. The 49ers improved to 13-0 in Smith's career when his passer rating was over 100.Smith threw a touchdown pass of 43 yards to Kyle Williams in the second quarter. He ended the first half with a 28-yard touchdown strike to Michael Crabtree. And early in the fourth quarter, he hit Mario Manningham for a 10-yard touchdown in the rout over the Bills (2-3).In the first half alone, Smith completed 12 of 15 passes for 237 yards. His 28-yard scoring strike to Crabtree with 24 seconds remaining gave the 49ers a 17-3 lead at halftime.That play came after Bills coach Chan Gailey decided against running out the clock at the end of the half. The Bills took over after Colin Kaepernick's fumble with :49 remaining in the half.But the Bills got greedy. Linebacker Patrick Willis forced a fumble of tight end Scott Chandler. Safety Dashon Goldson recovered, and the 49ers had the ball at the Buffalo 28-yard line.Smith hit Crabtree on a corner route on the next play.Crabtree finished the first half with five receptions for 103 yards. It was his first touchdown catch of the season. Another 41-yard reception was nullified by Frank Gore's chop-block penalty.The 49ers scored their first touchdown on Smith's 43-yard pass to Kyle Williams early in the second quarter.Anthony Dixon's three-yard touchdown run with 1:11 remaining gave the 49ers a 45-3 lead.
PROLIFIC OFFENSE: In addition to Smith and Crabtree's production, the 49ers also received a 106-yard day rushing by Gore on 14 carries, and 106 yards receiving on five receptions from tight end Vernon Davis.It was the first time the 49ers have had a 100-yard rusher, two 100-yard receivers and a 300-yard passer in the same game since Nov. 19, 1961 against the Chicago Bears. John Brodie threw for 322 yards; C.R. Roberts rushed for 107 yards; and Aaron Thomas (131) and R.C. Owens (107) both had more than 100 yards receiving.It was the first time the 49ers had a 100-yard rusher, just one 100-yard receiver and 300-yard passer in the same game since Charlie Garner, Terrell Owens and Jeff Garcia did it Oct. 8, 2000 vs. the Raiders.KAEPERNICK CONTRIBUTION: Backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick had a few more wrinkles added for him in the 49ers' offense. Kaepernick was in on a handful of plays. On his first snap, he lined up wide and retreated into the backfield as a decoy as Gore gained 7 yards.Late in the first half, Kaepernick fumbled the ball to the Bills at the end of a 6-yard run. In the third quarter, Kaepernick gained 15 yards to the Bills' 1-yard line to set up a touchdown that gave the 49ers a 24-7 lead.Kaepernick took over for Smith at quarterback with 10 minutes left in the game. On his first snap after taking over he scored on a 16-yard run to make the score 38-3.CULLY IN THE HOUSE: Third cornerback Chris Culliver played nearly every snap as the 49ers employed their nickel defense against the Bills, who typically play three receivers.Culliver entered the game in pass coverage for 121 snaps through four games, according to Pro Football Focus, and allowed only four catches for 30 yards. Culliver has a 42.4 passer rating against him when targeted. That rating dropped some more when Culliver hauled in an interception of a Ryan Fitzpatrick pass in the third quarter. It was Culliver's second career interception.JACOBS SITS: Veteran running back Brandon Jacobs is healthy. He went through a full week of practice to get prepared for Sunday's game, but the 49ers coaching staff did not declare him one of the 46 active players.Jacobs, whom the 49ers signed in the offseason to a one-year, 1.575 million contract, was envisioned as the team's short-yardage back. But he did not suit up because he has no role on special teams.Perhaps the 49ers could've used him in the first quarter. With a second-and-goal situation on the Bills' 1-yard line, Gore was stuffed on consecutive run plays with the 49ers jumbo package in front of him. The 49ers settled for David Akers' 19-yard field goal.In the third quarter with the same personnel grouping that included Leonard Davis, Daniel Kilgore and Will Tukuafu, Gore scored on a 1-yard run to give the 49ers a 24-3 lead.AKERS TIES RECORD: Akers has kicked at least one field goal in every regular-season game in which he has played with the 49ers. The 21-game streak ties a 49ers record set by Bruce Gossett from 1970 to '72. . . The 49ers had a nice two games against the AFC East. A week ago, the 49ers beat the New York Jets 34-0.

76ers anthem singer says 'We Matter' shirt got her the boot


76ers anthem singer says 'We Matter' shirt got her the boot

PHILADELPHIA -- Philadelphia 76ers national anthem singer Sevyn Streeter says she was told by the team she could not perform because of her "We Matter" jersey.

She was scheduled to sing before the Sixers' season opener Wednesday against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Streeter wrote on Twitter, "Was suppose to sing the anthem at @sixers & @okcthunder game but mins b4 @sixers said I couldn't because I was wearing a "We Matter" jersey.

The Sixers declined to say why Streeter's performance was canceled.

"The Philadelphia 76ers organization encourages meaningful actions to drive social change. We use our games to bring people together, to build trust and to strengthen our communities. As we move from symbolic gestures to action, we will continue to leverage our platform to positively impact our community," the Sixers said in a statement.

The Sixers had a member of their dance team sing the anthem.

This isn't the first time the Sixers were dragged into a national anthem controversy.

A woman performing the national anthem before an NBA preseason game in Miami did so while kneeling at midcourt.

Denasia Lawrence opened her jacket just before she started to sing, revealing a "Black Lives Matter" shirt, then dropped to her left knee and performed the song. She said it was her way of protesting racial oppression.

The anthem issue has been a major topic in the sports world in recent months, starting with the decision by San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick to not stand while it is played. Kaepernick cited racial injustice and police brutality among the reasons for his protest, and athletes from many sports - and many levels, from youth all the way to professional - have followed his lead in various ways.

Pederson refutes reports linking Eagles to 49ers WR Smith

Pederson refutes reports linking Eagles to 49ers WR Smith

Torrey SmithAlshon Jeffery?

Not happening, according to Eagles head coach Doug Pederson.

While a couple reports have linked the Eagles to making a trade before the fast-approaching deadline to grab another veteran outside receiver, Pederson shot them down at his Wednesday press conference.

“There’s no legitimacy to that,” Pederson said. “And I’m thrilled with the guys we have and going to work with them every day.”

[MAIOCCO: Source: 49ers not shopping WR Torrey Smith]

The Eagles made a trade before the season to acquire Dorial Green-Beckham from the Titans, but the team’s receivers still haven’t been great during the first six games of the 2016 season.

They also went out and claimed Bryce Treggs after the 49ers waived him at final cuts, but the speedy wideout hasn’t yet been active.