NFC West: rapid reaction 7

Rapid Reaction: Giants 29, 49ers 17

October, 19, 2008
10/19/08
4:35
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

The 49ers can keep talking about close defeats and not getting blown out, but at some point the team needs to win a game.

It wasn't going to happen against the Giants at the Meadowlands.

Quarterback J.T. O'Sullivan tossed two more interceptions. Yes, one was on a pass delivered as the first half ended.

But he lost a fumble for a safety late in the game, and the 49ers struggled again on third down. Frank Gore never got going on the ground.

The 49ers should bounce back at home against the Seahawks in Week 8, but there are no guarantees with O'Sullivan turning over the football. A loss to Seattle would mark five defeats in a row, a tough way for coach Mike Nolan to head into the bye week.

Rapid Reaction: Rams 34, Cowboys 14

October, 19, 2008
10/19/08
4:06
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

ST. LOUIS -- The Rams are a new team with new life under new coach Jim Haslett.

The transformation has been more dramatic than anyone could have anticipated. The Rams are suddenly a spirited and physical team with a chance to win every game.

Quarterback Marc Bulger again showed more toughness and leadership than in the past by taking hits and bouncing back to make plays. Steven Jackson ran relentlessly and found a lot more room against the Cowboys than he did during a victory over the Redskins in Week 6. His 25-carry, 160-yard performance allowed the Rams to control the clock, a huge help for the Rams' defense.

Injuries to defensive lineman Adam Carriker and linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa could prove costly depending on the severity. But the Rams are showing how attitude can compensate for personnel issues. Haslett deserves much of the credit. He's looking like the right man at the right time for a franchise seeking to establish itself again.

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