San Francisco 49ers: Ian Williams

Examining the San Francisco 49ers' roster:

QUARTERBACKS (2)

Because of heavy competition elsewhere, the 49ers will likely only carry two quarterbacks. They finished last season that way. The competition will be to see if undrafted rookie Kory Faulkner can take McLeod Bethel-Thompson's spot on the practice squad.

RUNNING BACKS (5)

The fact that the 49ers drafted Hyde in the second round and Lattimore is healthy means some tough decisions will have to be made. Hunter is too valuable to let go. That means 2012 second-round pick LaMichael James will have difficulty making the roster.

WIDE RECEIVERS (6)

The 49ers are so much deeper here this year than last. That means they will likely have to keep six receivers. Lloyd may look good and Patton has too much potential to give up on. That means it could be tough for Kassim Osgood to make it even though he is a special teams cog.

TIGHT ENDS (3)

If Davis ends his holdout, I can't see the 49ers keeping more than three tight ends because of the glut at receiver. Unless Garrett Celek has a big camp, he may be in trouble. Carrier intrigues the 49ers because of his size and speed.

OFFENSIVE LINE (8)

Assuming Boone ends his holdout, this is a pretty nice group of eight players. It's improved from last year. A solid veteran like Adam Snyder and a promising youngster like Ryan Seymour will have trouble making the team.

DEFENSIVE LINE (9)

This is another power spot. It's deep. Players like Jerod-Eddie and Dial are too valuable to cut. Ramsey has looked good and I have a hunch the 49ers may like him too much to expose him to the waiver wire. That means Demarcus Dobbs could be in trouble.

LINEBACKERS (7)

Most teams carry six linebackers but the 49ers are stacked here, especially with NaVorro Bowman out for about half the season. Because fifth-round pick Lynch is promising he should make the roster. Dan Skuta is an excellent player, but there might not be any room for him. I could see him being one of those later-summer Trent Baalke trade specials because he has value.

CORNERBACKS (5)

This unit is in flux, but I see Johnson making it. Don't be surprised if there is some in-camp jockeying as the 49ers look for the best mix.

SAFETIES (5)

Ward, the 49ers' first-round pick, will play nickel cornerback as a rookie, but projects long term as a safety. Ventrone and Spillman should stick because they are great on special teams. Craig Dahl could be in trouble.

SPECIALISTS (3):

This group is set and it's excellent.
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Ian Williams was developing into an important part of the San Francisco 49ers' defensive line rotation when he suffered a grotesque leg injury in Week 2 of last season.

Williams
Williams
Williams suffered a fractured left fibula (near his ankle) and major ligament damage on a then-legal cut block from Seattle guard J.R. Sweezy. Williams still can't watch the play in which he was hurt. He has seen the beginning of the play and then he turns his head.

"My leg was dangling," Williams said.

Williams had four surgeries from September to February. He is working out and hopes he will be ready to practice when training camp starts in seven weeks.

"That's the goal. It's attainable," Williams said. "I want to make sure I'm close to 100 (percent) because my position is very different than others. ... It feels good, just a little weak. That comes with having surgery. But it feels better every day, every week, every month."

Once he is healthy Williams is expected to be part of the defensive tackle rotation. The former undrafted free agent from Notre Dame has excited the 49ers because of his ability to take on double teams and his relentless work ethic.

Williams will need every bit of that work ethic as he battles back from four recent surgeries.
Much has been made about the Seattle Seahawks building their Super Bowl-winning roster on the power of undrafted free agents. Seattle had 21 undrafted free agents on their 53-man roster.

The Seahawks’ biggest competitor, the San Francisco 49ers, also have built their roster with the help of undrafted free agents. The 49ers ended the season with 16 of their 53 players being players who entered the league after not being drafted. They also have defensive tackle Ian Williams, who was on the injured reserve, as an undrafted player in their program.

Let’s take a look at the 17 San Francisco players who were not drafted:

Guard Alex Boone
Cornerback Tramaine Brock
Tight end Derek Carrier (originally signed by Oakland)
Tight end Garrett Celek
Safety Craig Dahl (Giants)
Kicker Phil Dawson (Oakland)
Defensive tackle DeMarcus Dobbs
Defensive tackle Tony Jerod-Eddie
Long-snapper Kevin McDermott
Cornerback Darryl Morris
Receiver Kassim Osgood (San Diego)
Linebacker Dan Skuta (Cincinnati)
Safety C.J. Spillman (San Diego)
Fullback Will Tukuafu (Seattle)
Safety Bubba Ventrone (New England)
Linebacker Michael Wilhoite
Defensive tackle Ian Williams

49ers rankings: 31-35

February, 10, 2014
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We are taking a look at the top 60 players in the San Francisco 49ers' program and will rank them from 1-60. We are going to take a look in a 12-part series, moving upward. The ranking considerations are based on 2013 production, future projections, age, and contract status:

31. Cornerback Carlos Rogers: Rogers was a valuable player. But he is going to be 33 and he has a high price. The 49ers did OK without him for two games in the playoffs. He is good, but I can see them moving on.

32. Running back Kendall Hunter: Hunter is a solid backup and good special teams player. He is a good player to have around, because he always seems ready to contribute when called upon.

33. Special teamer C.J. Spillman: One of the best special teamers in the NFL. Helps at the goal line too on defense. A big part of the team.

34. Defensive tackle Ian Williams: He was coming along well when a leg injury at Seattle in Week 2 ended his season. He is expected to be healthy and he should be a big part of the rotation again.

35. Center Jonathan Goodwin: Goodwin was important and he could be vital again. But he is 35 and a free agent. The 49ers might want to get younger at the position.

49ers injured player review

January, 30, 2014
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Let’s take a look at which San Francisco 49ers finished the season injured and how they may fit with the 2014 team:

DT Tank Carradine: The second-round pick is expected to be given a chance to make an impact next season.

WR Brandon Carswell: There will be some bottom-of-the-roster receiver spots. A good camp would give him a chance.

CB Chris Culliver: He will be a big part of the team in 2014. A solid nickel cornerback.

FB Alex Debniak: If Anthony Dixon leaves in free agency, perhaps there will be spot for him.

LB Darius Fleming: He’d need a great camp. Linebacker spot is packed in San Francisco.

RB Marcus Lattimore: The 49ers are excited about this top prospect. He will have a chance to play right away.

WR Mario Manningham: There is little chance this free agent will return.

OT Luke Marquardt: He is an intriguing prospect. He is huge and he could be a practice squad possibility.

FB Bruce Miller: The 49ers really missed him when he broke his scapula in December. His job awaits.

DL Lawrence Okoye: This former Olympian is a project, but the 49ers will give this supreme athlete a chance to develop.

DT Ian Williams: He has become a very good player, and will become part of the rotation in 2014.

A day after a painful 23-17 loss at Seattle, the San Francisco 49ers got some clarity on injuries to two key players.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that linebacker NaVorro Bowman has a torn MCL in addition to a torn ACL on his left knee. The early indications Sunday was Bowman suffered a torn ACL. Also, a source confirmed that guard Mike Iupati broke his fibula in the game. The initial thought by the team was he fractured his ankle.

Iupati
Bowman
Iupati's recovery time is about two months. It will not affect his 2014 season.

Bowman's recover will be a storyline throughout the offseason. Schefter reported that tears such as Bowman's are routine enough that he is expected to be ready for the start of the season.

However, the torn MCL complicates matters because it will likely delay his surgery for the torn ACL. Thus, it could extend his recovery time. So, if there are any complications, there is a chance Bowman could miss some time in the regular season.

Bowman's and Iupati's injuries continued a trend of the 49ers suffering major injuries at Seattle. Defensive tackle Ian Williams was lost for the season in Week 2 at Seattle.
NaVorro BowmanCary Edmondson/USA TODAY SportsAfter giving up 84 points in three games, NaVorro Bowman and the 49ers are now clamping down.

SAN FRANCISCO -- The code for San Francisco 49ers to succeed under Jim Harbaugh has not been difficult to crack.

It begins with the defense, a unit that is dominating despite playing without All-Pro linebackers Aldon Smith and Patrick Willis.

Sure, the 49ers have been pretty spectacular on offense at times. But this team lives and dies with its defense. And if the 49ers stick around as serious contenders in the NFC, it will be because of the defense.

After all, it was the defense that a week ago lifted San Francisco out of a two-game funk. And while completely dominating the Houston Texans 34-3 on Sunday night, the 49ers showed the rest of the league that this is still one of the most dominant defenses in the NFL.

And that this is still a Super Bowl contender.

There was serious concern about the 49ers after they were humiliated by the Seattle Seahawks and the Indianapolis Colts in Weeks 2 and 3. They were outscored 56-10 in those two games. The defense looked tired, and injuries were mounting.

Yet it no longer appears to be a crisis situation in San Francisco. The 49ers have responded to those two drubbings by outscoring the Rams (on the road) and the Texans by a combined 69-14.

After Seattle lost to the Colts on Sunday to drop to 4-1, the 3-2 49ers are back in the NFC West hunt. And after a tough start, the schedule now softens a bit for the 49ers. They host Arizona next week, and then travel to play the Jake Locker-less Titans and then the winless Jaguars in London before the bye. If the San Francisco defense continues to play well, turning a 1-2 start into a 6-2 record at the bye appears more than realistic.

There is no reason to think this defense is going to sag now. It has thrived under adversity.

Smith went to an alcohol treatment center on Sept. 24. There is no timetable for his return, but he may not be back until after the Nov. 2 bye. Special-teamer Dan Skuta and rookie Corey Lemonier have played in his place. Willis went out with a groin injury in the Colts’ loss. The team is being cautious with him (he was a game-time inactive Sunday), and barring a setback, Willis might return against Arizona. Meanwhile, Michael Wilhoite has played well in his absence.

This has been a theme for San Francisco this year. For a defense that hasn’t rotated much under defensive coordinator Vic Fangio, its depth is really showing.

Glenn Dorsey took over at nose tackle when Ian Williams went down for the season in Week 2. Tramaine Brock has been spectacular as the No. 3 cornerback since Nnamdi Asomugha went down with a knee injury two weeks ago. There is little chance Asomugha wins his job back.

Sunday’s night’s domination did not come without the potential of more adversity. Standout defensive tackle Ray McDonald left with a biceps injury. He said after the game he will have an MRI on Monday. McDonald would be missed if he is out for an extended period of time. However, his replacement, Tony Jerod-Eddie, had an interception Sunday night after McDonald was hurt.

That’s what these 49ers are doing. Backups are producing when the stars are out.

To think the San Francisco defense has allowed just 14 points in two games playing without Smith, one of the most dynamic pass-rushers in the game, and Willis, a potential Hall of Famer, is stunning. How many other defenses could thrive without their best players?

"That’s why we are here," Skuta said. "You see it in practice. You see guys step up when needed here."

Added standout safety Donte Whitner, who had a tremendous game Sunday night: “This defense runs 22, 23 [deep] … it’s one of the deepest defenses in the league. … Yes, we miss our guys, but we still have to get the job done. You saw that tonight.”

[+] EnlargeTramaine Brock
Jeff Gross/Getty ImagesTramaine Brock intercepted two passes and returned one for a TD on the game's first series.
The 49ers’ defensive dominance started early Sunday. On Houston's first drive, Brock made the first of his two interceptions against quarterback Matt Schaub and returned the ball 18 yards for a touchdown. It was the fourth game in a row that Schaub had an interception returned for a score. It set the tone for a long night for the Texans' quarterback.

The 49ers forced four turnovers. The 49ers ate Schaub alive on short passes. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Schaub averaged just 4 yards on passes that traveled 10 or fewer yards. All three of Schaub’s interceptions came on short passes.

The 49ers scored 34 points and were runaway winners -- and quarterback Colin Kaepernick completed just 6 of 15 passes for 113 yards and a touchdown. San Francisco was in game-management mode because of what the defense was doing.

“We look to set the tone on defense,” Wilhoite said. “That’s the plan every week, and it worked out well tonight.”

There was a lot of concern about the San Francisco defense when this team was 1-2. It had allowed 84 points in three games. But I thought the point was misleading. The defense sagged late in games and got tired after the San Francisco offense couldn’t muster and sustain drives against the Seahawks and the Colts.

Sunday night, the offense, led again by a strong ground game, held up its end of the bargain and again and fed off the defense. That’s how the 49ers win.

"I know some people were worried about the defense earlier," Whitner said. "But this is a strong, winning defense. We are showing that."

Double Coverage: Colts vs 49ers

September, 20, 2013
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The Tree Bowl is upon us.

In one of the more intriguing matchups of Week 3, coach Jim Harbaugh and his San Francisco 49ers will host quarterback Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts -- and their new running back Trent Richardson.

This is a homecoming for Luck and a reunion for both men. Luck played for Harbaugh at nearby Stanford. They were the toast of college football, and Harbaugh played it into a job with the 49ers after the 2010 season. Luck stayed on The Farm another year and had a brilliant rookie season last year.

However, there is much more than the Harbaugh-Luck angle in this game, as both 2012 playoff teams are coming off a loss in Week 2. Colts' reporter Mike Wells and I discuss the matchup in Double Coverage:

Wells: Quarterback Colin Kaepernick looked like he was more than a read-option quarterback when he threw for 412 yards in Week 1, but he was back to normal against Seattle, only throwing for 127 yards. Which game is the real Kaepernick -- the Week 1 performance or Week 2 at Seattle?

Williamson: I think he has shown the real Kaepernick is much closer to the one we saw against the Packers. The Seattle game was Kaepernick's worst in his 12 NFL starts. Kaepernick is still inexperienced and still growing. I think he will learn from the Seattle game. Plus, the Colts' defense is beatable in the air and on the ground. Kaepernick will likely bounce back. I expect to see Kaepernick have some success on the ground, similar to the success Oakland's Terrelle Pryor had against the Colts in Week 1.

Wells: Kaepernick will be a problem for the Colts. The only time the Colts had the answer for Pryor was when he decided to try to beat them with his arm instead of his feet. The Colts intercepted him twice, but I don't see them having that same kind of success against Kaepernick. He's a better runner and definitely a better passer than Pryor. You obviously cover Kaepernick on a daily basis, you know about Luck and you were in Seattle this week. Do you think the 49ers' quarterback deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as Luck, Russell Wilson and RG III?

Williamson: Oh, I'm a big Luck fan. As far as I'm concerned, the question should be whether the other young quarterbacks deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as Luck. Yes, he is a different quarterback than the other young stars. But this is what Luck has that will never go out of style -- he is a great pocket passer. He is a traditional star who would have been dominant in any era he played. I fancy myself as someone who stays grounded and doesn't speak bombastically about analysis. With that said, on the night Luck was drafted, I predicted his career will end with a ceremony in Canton, Ohio. I truly believe that and look forward to seeing him play in person for the first time Sunday.

Wells: Of course, this game became much more than Harbaugh and Luck when the Colts made the blockbuster deal for Richardson with Cleveland on Wednesday. Will the 49ers prepare as if they'll be facing Richardson on Sunday, or will they go in with the mindset that it'll be Ahmad Bradshaw and Donald Brown, since Richardson will only have two practices and a walk-through to learn Indianapolis' system?

Williamson: It definitely changed the 49ers' week. They are in a tough spot. They made their plan for the Colts and were actually executing it on the practice field for the first time when the trade went down. I don't think the 49ers totally changed their game plan because of the trade. But it altered it. Coaches suddenly had to watch film of Richardson and make adjustments. Because Richardson is a running back, I expect to see him a lot Sunday. He doesn't need a lot of time in the playbook. The Colts gave up a first-round pick for Richardson so they can win now. They will start using him when they can, and I'd think that will start Sunday. But the 49ers are good against the run. They were fourth in the NFL last season. They will attack this curveball with confidence.

Wells: Anything Richardson can give the Colts will be an upgrade over Brown, a former first-round pick who hasn't lived up to expectations. Bradshaw is still rounding into shape after not playing in the preseason, so having Richardson share some of the snaps with him will help the Colts' running game and hopefully open the passing game for Luck. The Colts are dealing with their fair share of injuries, losing starting tight end Dwayne Allen for the season. How big of a loss is nose tackle Ian Williams on defense for the 49ers?

Williamson: It hurts, but it's not devastating. Injuries happen to every team. Williams is a nice player and he was coming into his own. Free-agent pickup Glenn Dorsey was rotating with Williams. Now Dorsey is the starter. I think the 49ers will survive this injury as long as Dorsey stays healthy. There is not much depth behind him.

Wells: The Colts will test Dorsey, because Bradshaw and Richardson are both straight-ahead backs who run like they're angry at somebody. So much is being made about the Luck-Harbaugh reunion, but the real reunion is between brothers Vontae and Vernon Davis. Do you think Vernon will play with a purpose because his kid brother is on the field?

Williamson: It's really interesting, Mike. Vontae has been in the league since 2009, but this will be the brothers' first meeting. The Dolphins played the 49ers the year before they drafted Vontae, and they played the 49ers last season, shortly after dealing Vontae to the Colts. Vernon has been out of practice with a hamstring tweak. However, he has indicated he will play. I fully expect him out there. Vernon is a prime-time guy, and playing against his little brother will get his juices flowing. And of course, Harbaugh can tell Vernon all about the intensity of going against a sibling.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – While there's no doubt the San Francisco 49ers are losing a fine young player with nose tackle Ian Williams out for the season with a broken ankle, the flip side of the coin is the opportunity Glenn Dorsey is getting.

Dorsey
This just might be Dorsey’s best NFL chance for success. Dorsey -- whom the Kansas City Chiefs made the No. 5 overall pick out of LSU in the 2008 draft -- drew comparisons to Warren Sapp. Many NFL personnel folks thought Dorsey was a can’t-miss player and the best player on the draft board.

It would be a stretch to say Dorsey was a bust in Kansas City. He was a solid contributor before being hurt in the fourth game last season. He was solid, but never a star for the Chiefs.

However, Dorsey, who signed with the 49ers this offseason, was playing out of position for much of his time there as a 3-4 defensive end. Playing nose tackle for the 49ers might be a better fit. He was rotating with Williams before he got hurt, and Dorsey played in Seattle after Williams went down.

I spoke to ESPN analyst Matt Williamson about Dorsey. Williamson said he thinks Dorsey can help the 49ers.

“He’s an interesting player,” Williamson said. “Being a 3-4 DE never really suited him, but he bulked up and became a good run defender. Williams was more of that fireplug guy on the nose that could only stop the run. I question how well Dorsey will be able to handle the rigors on playing there for 16-plus games, but he is the better talent of the two and a better pass-rusher.”

49ers notes: Harbaugh high on DT

September, 18, 2013
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SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Notes from the San Francisco 49ers’ media session Wednesday:
  • Coach Jim Harbaugh said tight end Vernon Davis is day-to-day with a hamstring injury that he suffered late in the loss at Seattle on Sunday. Davis tweeted that physicians instructed him to rest this week, but he expects to play Sunday against the Colts and his younger brother, cornerback Vontae Davis. It will be the first time the brothers face each other since Vontae Davis entered the NFL in 2009.
  • Harbaugh said safety Eric Reid continues to have no symptoms of a concussion. Reid left Sunday's game with a possible concussion in the first half. The rookie, who has been outstanding so far this season, will have to pass a league-mandated concussion test before returning.
  • Harbaugh said the team did not sign a backup nose tackle -- starter Ian Williams was lost for the season with a broken ankle at Seattle, and Glenn Dorsey will take over -- because of the good work of Tony Jerod-Eddie. Harbaugh said Jerod-Eddie is ready to take the next step and the team “feels good” about it.
  • Harbaugh said newly signed Owen Marecic will back up Bruce Miller at fullback and play on special teams. Marecic was a favorite of Harbaugh’s at Stanford.
  • Quarterback Colin Kaepernick on the season-ending injury to his friend Williams: “It’s tragic.”
  • Harbaugh said he heard there is a “crew” of former Stanford players who will be at the Colts-49ers game Sunday. The Colts, of course, are quarterbacked by Andrew Luck, who starred under Harbaugh at The Farm.
  • What happens when you commit four turnovers, as Kaepernick did at Seattle? You fall off ESPN.com’s MVP Watch. Kaepernick was No. 2 after Week 1.

The San Francisco 49ers’ 53-man roster was pretty healthy in the first two weeks of the season. However, the 49ers limped out of their 29-3 defeat at Seattle.

Nose tackle Ian Williams broke his ankle and was lost for the season. We may see the effects of the loss at practice this week. Standout tight end Vernon Davis tweeted late Tuesday night that he needs to rest his hamstring, which was injured late against the Seahawks, but he should be able to play Sunday against Indianapolis. It probably means he will not practice much this week.

Davis could have some company on the sideline. Defensive end Ray McDonald left in the fourth quarter, but X-rays on his right ankle were negative. He could also miss some time this week in practice, at least.

Safety Eric Reid, who has been outstanding in his first two NFL games, missed the second half Sunday because of a potential concussion. San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh said Monday that Reid did not show any concussion symptoms. He will need to pass the NFL’s concussion test to play Sunday.

Running back LaMichael James has missed the first two games with a knee sprain. There is a chance he returns to practice this week.

49ers try out DT Kyle Love

September, 17, 2013
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The San Francisco 49ers did indeed take a look at a defensive tackle on Tuesday, but have not as yet made a move to fill a spot left vacant by injury.

The 49ers worked out Kyle Love, who started 25 games over the past two seasons for New England. San Francisco needs depth at the defensive-tackle position with Ian Williams out for the year with a broken ankle -- and could turn to Love at some point.

The 49ers did make two moves Tuesday, signing fullback Owen Marecic and reaching an injury settlement with defensive tackle Will Tukuafu. He could be brought back later in the season.

49ers need defensive line depth

September, 16, 2013
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The San Francisco 49ers are considering what to do at nose tackle now that it is certain Ian Williams is out for the year.

Williams
Williams
As expected, San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh said Williams is out for the season with a broken ankle he suffered in the team’s 29-3 defeat at Seattle on Sunday night. Glenn Dorsey replaced Williams and he will start.

Dorsey is a starting-quality player, but the 49ers are thin behind him. San Francisco will surely look to add at the position. But don’t expect any quick fixes. There might be some players on the street who can help, but none will be better than Dorsey. That’s fine. The 49ers just need depth there.

There is one available veteran who could potentially be attractive and that’s former Oakland defensive tackle Richard Seymour. He is best suited as a 3-4 defensive lineman.

But there are issues. Seymour will be 34 next month. His play has declined and there have been reports he is only interested in playing with a big contract. There is little chance the 49ers would break the bank for a player who would come in, need conditioning time and then just be a rotational player.

So, in the end, the 49ers will find someone, but don’t expect a major jolt here.

49ers show they are far from perfect

September, 16, 2013
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Seahawks DefenseJonathan Ferrey/Getty ImagesAfter a great showing in Week 1, Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers were humbled Sunday in Seattle.

SEATTLE -- Four weeks after being humiliated in Seattle last season, the San Francisco 49ers advanced to the Super Bowl.

So, on the second football Sunday of September, it would be naive to present the Seattle Seahawks' 29-3 victory over the 49ers as the key to the season. It’s just too early.

Just like last December, the Seahawks crushed the 49ers in a matchup of two of the best teams in the NFL. In fact, the 49ers were ranked No. 1 in ESPN.com’s Power Rankings, while the Seahawks were a spot behind them. The Seahawks surely will take over the top spot and the 49ers will fall.

But for now, the only thing it means is the Seahawks are 2-0 and the 49ers, who were flat in this rivalry game after an emotional win over Green Bay to open the season, are 1-1. This win gives Seattle, which has now outscored the 49ers by a tally of 71-16 in the teams’ last two meetings, an early advantage in the NFC West. But the game would have had much larger and lingering aftershocks if the 49ers had stolen a game at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks haven’t lost here since 2011.

In a game that was delayed exactly an hour late in the first quarter because of a lightning storm, the Seahawks waited and then did what they do -- they dominated at home. Now the season moves on, and the 49ers and Seahawks will more than likely be playing for something when they meet in San Francisco in Week 14.

While this Seattle statement doesn’t mean too much in the overall conference race, the 49ers do need to take stock. It was an awful night for them. This loss was as worrisome as the 34-28 win over Green Bay last weekend was promising. Things did not go well at all.

“I’m certainly not proud of the way that we played tonight or coached,” coach Jim Harbaugh said. “It was not our finest hour. ... We have to bounce back. We have to bounce back in a big way.”

Regrouping will start with quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Nearly flawless last week, Kaepernick struggled Sunday night against the Seahawks’ super-studded secondary. Kaepernick threw three interceptions and lost a fumble. A week after throwing for 412 yards, Kaepernick had only 127 yards through the air. His QBR was 14.0, the worst of his 12-start NFL career. His throws were off all night and he did not look comfortable, even before the weather delay.

Kaepernick did not shed blame.

“We're not going to win games if I play like that,” he said flatly.

The Seahawks took away the instant chemistry Kaepernick had built last week with receiver Anquan Boldin in his first game as a 49er, when Boldin had 13 catches for 208 yards. Against Seattle, Boldin had one catch for 7 yards. It came with the game well out of hand. Tight end Vernon Davis had three catches for 20 yards. Last week, he had six catches for 98 yards.

According to ESPN Stats & Information, Kaepernick did not complete a pass downfield of 15 yards or longer for the first time in his career. Last week, he had eight such completions. San Francisco's offensive line, which was brilliant against the Packers, sagged some at Seattle. Kaepernick was sacked three times and was under duress 13 of the 35 times he dropped back to pass.

The 49ers also were unable to establish their run game for the second straight week. Overall, it was a poor showing by one of the most dynamic offenses in the league.

“We didn’t execute, across the board,” Boldin said. “We just didn’t do what we were supposed to do.”

This loss is on the San Francisco offense much more than the defense. But the defense did allow Seattle tailback Marshawn Lynch to have a big day. Lynch, who had run for 100-plus yards in his previous three games against the 49ers, had 98 yards rushing, 37 receiving yards and three touchdowns (two rushing, one receiving).

Discipline was also an issue for San Francisco. The 49ers were called for four personal fouls. They had 12 penalties for 121 yards. In two games, the 49ers have a whopping 23 penalties.

In addition to all the mistakes and the lack of execution, the 49ers limped out of Seattle. Nose tackle Ian Williams broke his ankle. Rookie safety Eric Reid was being tested for a concussion. Davis left with a hamstring injury. And defensive end Ray McDonald sustained an ankle injury (X-rays were negative).

This night couldn’t have gone worse for San Francisco. It has to be disturbing, and it will be the cause for great self-evaluation inside the team facility in Santa Clara. But as last year’s Seattle disaster showed, a lopsided loss here doesn’t necessarily spell ultimate doom.

Rapid Reaction: Seahawks 29, 49ers 3

September, 16, 2013
9/16/13
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SEATTLE -- A few thoughts on the Seattle Seahawks’ 29-3 win over the San Francisco 49ers:

What it means: The Seahawks (2-0) have early control of the NFC West. They needed this win more than the 49ers (1-1) because it is was a home game. The 49ers are going to have to make sure they beat the Seahawks in San Francisco on Dec. 8. This game was intense and closer than the score indicated. But the Seahawks outplayed the 49ers, who were surprisingly flat offensively. The 49ers have to find their offensive spark and clean up the ridiculous penalties that have plagued them the past two weeks. The NFC West race is far from over, but the Seahawks, who haven’t lost at home since 2011, struck first and loudly.

Stock watch: Lots of downward pointing here. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick was never comfortable and more of a detriment than a help to his team. San Francisco receiver Anquan Boldin had one catch after 13 last week against Green Bay. The 49ers were very sloppy. They were penalized 12 times for 121 yards and have 23 penalties this season. San Francisco had four personal-foul penalties, which is inexcusable.

Lynch a difference-maker: Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch had another big game against the 49ers. He had 98 yards on 28 carries and scored three touchdowns (two rushing, one receiving). On a day when both quarterbacks were off, Lynch was the difference.

Injuries mount: San Francisco nose tackle Ian Williams broke his ankle in the first quarter, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The 49ers confirmed that Williams has an ankle injury, but not the severity. He appeared to be hurt on a low block by Seattle guard J.R. Sweezy. The 49ers can't be pleased. Williams was coming into his own. It will mean more opportunities for free-agent pickup Glenn Dorsey. Also, rookie safety Eric Reid left the game in the second quarter because of a possible concussion and tight end Vernon Davis left late with a hamstring injury. Both will be monitored this week. Defensive end Ray McDonald was also hurt late.

What’s next: The 49ers host Indianapolis on Sunday. It will be a reunion for San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh and Colts quarterback Andrew Luck. Harbaugh coached Luck at Stanford prior to coming to the 49ers. The Colts are 1-1. They lost at home to Miami on Sunday. It will be the Colts’ first road game of the season.

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