1. Running in place
The Bears’ run game was awful. Again.
A week after the Bears gained a measly six yards on 14 carries against the Eagles, running back Jordan Howard had 13 carries for 38 yards in the Bears’ 15-14 defeat against the 49ers on Sunday.
“I don’t think we really established the run game,” coach John Fox said.
That’s an understatement.
The worst part about the Bears’ production is how bad the 49ers defense is this season. The 49ers entered the game with the No. 30 run defense, allowing nearly 130 yards per game.
2. Third-down problem
The Bears defense is a battered bunch.
Veteran Chris Prosinski, signed off the street on Thursday, started at safety because three other safeties were injured, including starter Adrian Amos.
Outside linebacker Lamarr Houston, claimed off waivers on Wednesday, also played plenty after Pernell McPhee suffered a shoulder injury early in the first quarter.
But injuries aren’t an excuse for why the 49ers converted 10 of 18 third downs—including 7-for-10 in the second half — in quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo’s first start for them.
“We didn’t really generate much rush,” Fox said.
That would be another understatement. Garoppolo was sacked twice, but he did throw well when under pressure.
It included a 33-yard completion to receiver Trent Taylor on third-and-nine in the fourth quarter before the two-minute warning. Outside linebacker Sam Acho had a free run at Garoppolo.
3. Focus on Fuller
Cornerback Kyle Fuller’s first-quarter interception was a highlight for him, but it’s also a deceiving one.
It started out as a reception by receiver Louis Murphy over the middle, but he lost control as he fell to the ground and Fuller grabbed it from him.
If Murphy makes the catch, it’s a first down on a third-and-nine play for Garoppolo and the 49ers.