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Sunday, September 28, 2008
Rapid Reaction: Saints 31, 49ers 17

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

The 49ers find their record the same as it was after four games last season. Their offense is better, but the schedule isn't doing them any favors.

New England is waiting for the 49ers in Week 5 after a bye week. At 2-2, San Francisco remains tied with Arizona atop the NFC West. But the 49ers also squandered a chance to keep their offensive momentum going against an injury-depleted New Orleans defense.

The team went from 2-2 to 2-10 last season. That won't happen again in 2008, but the Patriots, Eagles and Giants are next up on the schedule.

Quarterback J.T. O'Sullivan absorbed six more sacks, raising his season total to 19. The 49ers should also be concerned about an injury-diminished secondary that couldn't stop Drew Brees from averaging 10.4 yards per pass attempt while tossing three touchdowns.

Frank Gore ran effectively for the 49ers, as expected, but he never broke a long run. And the 49ers weren't in position to force-feed the ball to him the way they did while leading against Detroit in Week 3.