Vikings take it to 49ers in Moss' homecoming


Vikings take it to 49ers in Moss' homecoming


MINNEAPOLIS -- When receiver Randy Moss' name was announced Sunday as part of the 49ers' starting lineup, it elicited a huge reaction from the Minnesota fans.Moss was showered mostly with cheers.That was the highlight of Moss' day, as the 49ers fell from the ranks of the unbeaten with a 24-13 loss at the Metrodome."I want to thank the fans for the love," Moss said. "I really appreciate the love that they give."Moss, whose career began with seven seasons with the Vikings, had some opportunities to elicit more reaction from the fans in his first game in the dome as a visiting player.But quarterback Alex Smith misfired on a couple of throws, including one that could've resulted in an 18-yard touchdown in the second quarter. Smith's first attempt to Moss was a high throw that skipped through his hands."Those two plays early to Randy, he and I got to connect," Smith said. "I got to throw a better ball on both of those occasions because those are key plays. When I let both of them go, it felt good. I just didn't connect. They both came out high."He stayed positive the whole game. I got to hit those. Those opportunities don't happen often. You don't know how many you're going to get, especially in a game like this. You're just kicking yourself for not hitting that."Smith targeted six throws toward Moss, who played approximately 20 of the 49ers' 58 offensive plays. Moss finished with three catches for 27 yards. When asked about his play time afterward, Moss answered, "Next question."After convincing wins against the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions -- two NFC North teams that made the playoffs a year ago -- the 49ers came crashing down with a loss to the Vikings, who finished 3-13 last season."I know the Vikings have always play teams tough, especially when they're an underdog," Moss said. "That's one thing that's Minnesota football. So we just going back at it and have practice this week and the Jets coming back. So we'll go ahead and watch the film and correct our mistakes."The 49ers (2-1) departed Minnesota on Sunday afternoon for a continuation of a 10-day road trip. The 49ers will practice this week in Youngstown, Ohio, before traveling to New Jersey to take on the New York Jets next week.The 49ers made plenty of mistakes in all phases of the game to begin this road trip on a sour note.Vikings second-year quarterback Christian Ponder sliced up the 49ers' defense on the opening drive, and converted a fourth-and-goal pass to tight end Kyle Rudolph to give Minnesota an early lead. The Vikings never trailed.Smith's streak of consecutive pass attempts without an interception ended at 249 attempts when cornerback Josh Robinson picked him off late in the game. The 49ers committed three turnovers in the game, and scored just one touchdown on three trips into the red zone.And when the Vikings made mistakes in the fourth quarter, the 49ers could not take advantage. Safety Donte Whitner dropped a potential touchdown opportunity midway through the fourth quarter when he could not hold onto an easy interception."I dropped it. It was just a drop on my part, a play that I have to make," Whitner said. "That play right there could've changed the whole momentum of the football game."The 49ers did an acceptable job on running back Adrian Peterson, who rushed 25 times for 86 yards (3.4 average). But the Vikings converted 7 of 14 third-down opportunities.Offensively, the 49ers tried to rely on their passing attack. Smith completed 24 of 35 pass attempts for 204 yards with one touchdown -- a 1-yard toss to tight end Vernon Davis -- and one interception.Running back Frank Gore had 63 yards on just 12 rushing attempts. When asked why the 49ers get Gore more touches through the course of the game, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh responded, "I don't have an answer for you."The 49ers scored a touchdown on just one of their three trips inside the red zone. David Akers kicked two field goals, and another was blocked when Leonard Davis allowed penetration over left guard."The Vikings did a better job than we did all the way around," Harbaugh said. "We didn't get it done. There are a lot of reasons for that."There's going to be good. There's going to be bad. Today was a bad day, and we can't sulk abut it, can't complain, point fingers. You just have to suck it up. And I know we'll do that."

Report: 49ers seek first-round pick for Staley

Report: 49ers seek first-round pick for Staley

If the 49ers are active at the NFL trade deadline on Nov. 1, the organization figures to be sellers.

With a 1-6 record, mired in a six-game losing streak and seemingly fielding a less-competitive team every week, the 49ers do not figure to be in the buying market with the trade deadline approaching.

Left tackle Joe Staley, 32, one of the team’s few players who would be attractive to a contender, is available for a first-round draft pick, according to Pro Football Talk. The report cited a “source with knowledge of the dynamics.”

Cleveland Browns left tackle Joe Thomas is also on the trade market for a second-round pick, according to the report. The teams mentioned with potential interest in acquiring Staley or Thomas are the Vikings, Giants, Cardinals, Seahawks and Patriots, reports PFT.

Staley has a base salary of $5.4 million this season. His pay increases to $8.95 million next season, including $8.25 million in base salary. He is signed through the 2019 season.

Staley, a first-round draft pick in 2007, has been selected to five consecutive Pro Bowls.

If the 49ers trade Staley, it could open the way for right tackle Trent Brown to move to the left side. The only other tackle on the roster is rookie John Theus. Veteran guard Zane Beadles is also capable of playing tackle.

The NFL trade deadline is Tuesday, Nov. 1 at 1 p.m. (PT). The 49ers enter their bye week after Sunday's 34-17 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The team’s next game is Nov. 6 against the New Orleans Saints.

Kickers miss short field goals in OT; Seahawks, Cardinals tie


Kickers miss short field goals in OT; Seahawks, Cardinals tie

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Seattle's Stephen Hauschka and Arizona's Chandler Catanzaro missed short field goals that would have won the game in overtime and the Seahawks and Cardinals settled for a 6-6 tie Sunday night.

Hauschka's 27-yard field goal was wide left with seven seconds left after Catanzaro's 24-yarder bounced off the left upright.

The tie was the Cardinals' first since Dec. 7, 1986, a 10-10 draw at Philadelphia when the franchise was based in St. Louis. It was the first for the Seattle since entering the NFL in 1976.

The last tie in the NFL came in 2014, when Carolina and Cincinnati tied 37-37.

The Cardinals (3-3-1) dominated the game statistically and looked to be in shape to win it after Carson Palmer's 40-yard pass to J.J. Nelson set up Catanzaro's short kick.

The Seahawks (4-1-1), stuffed throughout regulation by the Arizona defense, took over and Russell Wilson completed passes of 31 yards to Jermaine Kearse and 27 yards to Doug Baldwin to give Houschka his short attempt.

Both kickers made field goals on their teams' first possession of overtime.

Catanzaro, who kicked field goals of 46 and 45 yards, also had a 39-yard field goal blocked by a stunning play by Bobby Wagner.

Until the overtime, the only time the Seahawks crossed midfield came when Tanner McEnvoy blocked Ryan Quigley's punt with 4:33 to play. That gave Seattle the ball on the Arizona 27 and led to Hauschka's 40-yard field goal that tied it at 3 with four minutes to play.

Catanzaro's 46-yard field goal put Arizona up 3-0 with 3:11 left in the first half and the Cardinals nursed that lead until the blocked punt.

On a bruising night, Arizona's David Johnson had a career-high 41 touches. He carried the ball 33 times for 113 yards and caught eight passes for 58 yards. Russell Wilson, obviously slowed by leg problems, complelted 24 of 37 passes for 225 yards, most of the damage coming in the overtime. He carried the ball once for minus-two yards.

Arizona's defense nearly scored halfway through the fourth quarter when Chandler Jones hit Wilson as he was about to pass and the ball bounced toward the Seattle goal line, but Michael Glowinski jumped on it for Seattle and the 4-yard line, a 20-yard loss.


The Cardinals had the first scoring threat. Catanzaro lined up for a 39-yard field goal but 245-pound linebacker Wagner jumped over Arizona long snapper Aaron Brewer like an Olympic hurdler and blocked it. Cardinals coach Bruce Arians argued loudly for a penalty and was charged with a timeout when he challenged a play that is not reviewable. That proved significant when the Cardinals couldn't stop the clock to get off a short field goal attempt as the first half ended.


The Cardinals were without speedster John Brown after doctors diagnosed sickle cell traits that were causing leg pain. The other wide receiver named Brown, Jaron, left the game early with a knee injury, depleting is usually one of the league's deeper wide receiver corps.