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Zod

Getting Defensive - 49ers Edition

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This Sunday the Carolina Panthers face their toughest game yet this season. They will be playing on the road, across the country, and against a formidable 6-2 team. Their performance on Sunday will give us a good indication of their post season prognosis. Win and the 2013 Carolina Panthers are division title contenders. Lose and they are likely chasing down a wild card ticket.

 

The 49ers are in some ways a mirror image of the Carolina Panthers. Both have stout defenses featuring a strong front seven. Both feature dynamic young quarterbacks and a solid run game.

 

The 49ers offense currently ranks a mediocre 16th overall in yards per game, but they rank 5th overall in points per game. That efficiency on offense is thanks to Frank Gore and the number 1 ranked rushing offense in the league.

 

Therefore, to stifle the San Francisco offense the Panthers must stop Frank Gore.

 

A quick look at Gore's tendencies reveals his strengths are running behind the center and sweeping out to the right. Gore averages over 5 yards per carry when running these gaps. When running left, Gore is mediocre at best, averaging only 3.1 yard per carry.

 

The good news for the Panthers is that they have a healthy defensive line with quality run stopping depth with Lotulelei, Short, Edwards, and Cole. Keeping these defensive tackles fresh by frequent rotations will make it much more difficult for Gore to wear out the Panthers defense. Around the edges the Panthers match up well with sure handed tacklers in Davis and Kuechly, who both currently lead the team in tackles.

 

The 49ers passing game is currently ranked dead last in the league. 49ers fans will point to injuries in their 2nd and 3rd receiving options, but that is a poor excuse. The 49ers still have Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis, two formidable receiving threats. Those two by themselves should be able to provide a better ranking than last in the league given an adequate quarterback. WR Mario Manningham returns to practice this week for the 49ers but is unlikely to be activated in time for Sunday's game.

 

Colin Kaepernick currently has a respectable 87.6 QB rating. The interesting thing is that rating increases to 108.8 when facing a defense that is blitzing. Clearly the 49ers are excellent at blitz pickups and hot routes. However, Kaepernick's rating drops to a dismal 56.5 when under pressure from a base 4 lineman.

 

Look for the Panthers to blitz less frequently than they did against the Falcons. Instead they will rely on their front 4 to pressure Kaepernick, who has been sacked 15 times this season under these conditions. Kaepernick is averaging 10 yards when allowed to scramble. This has occurred roughly three times per game this season. The Panthers could spy Kaepernick with Luke Kuechly who matches his size and speed.

 

The Panthers have a tough task ahead of them this weekend but I believe they have a better shot at success than many in the media are giving them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Agreed, its always tougher for a QB when you don't HAVE to blitz. That leaves 7 in coverage and that is something I believe kaep may struggle with. Only rushing 4 also allows you to have a spy (like you said) without forfeiting much (if any) in coverage. And yes, a major key is fresh lineman......and no fua.

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I am exciting about this game. I think we will match up well with them. As stated, we stop Gore and I like our chances in coming home with a W. I am going out of town this week. I am hoping I can find a place sunday to watch our guys play.

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Two questions... Is Dwan Edwards back and is Crabtree suiting up for them?

 

Sounds like Aldon will be back but not Crabtree.

 

Rotoworld, sourcing CSN Bay Area:

 

Aldon Smith appears capable of playing every snap as soon as this week.
Smith was away from the team for five weeks as he sought treatment for substance abuse. He apparently kept himself in good shape, as he went through Tuesday's practice without issue. The Niners are expected to use their All-Pro pass rusher in Sunday's game against Carolina, likely off the bench behind Dan Skuta/Corey Lemonier. Smith will be back with the starters by Week 11.

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I bet TD plays a spying role similar to what he did so effectively against Vick earlier in his career

Sent from my SGH-T999

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I bet TD plays a spying role similar to what he did so effectively against Vick earlier in his career

Sent from my SGH-T999

 

Not sure about that. TD is much better in coverage than Luke. I want TD on Vernon Davis.

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Whatever we did to Tony G. last game to shut him down in the 2nd half, do the same thing for Vernan Davis.  I think Star is going to have a monster impact on the game.  Bring Mitchell down in the box to help lay some wood on th run D and make them beat us with their passing game to the outside. 

 

I really like our chances.

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Not sure about that. TD is much better in coverage than Luke. I want TD on Vernon Davis.

 

^^This

 

We will need for Luke to have a strong game. Mainly in stopping the run and spying

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The 49ers passing game is currently ranked dead last in the league. 49ers fans will point to injuries in their 2nd and 3rd receiving options, but that is a poor excuse. The 49ers still have Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis, two formidable receiving threats. Those two by themselves should be able to provide a better ranking than last in the league given an adequate quarterback. WR Mario Manningham returns to practice this week for the 49ers but is unlikely to be activated in time for Sunday's game.

 

 

 

It's a combination of having major injuries at the WR position and not having to pass because we've been up so early on teams.

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The Seahawks are the best team we have played, and we should've won that game.

The Seahawks and niners are both EXTREMELY overrated, but the Seahawks are the better team.

The niners better pray we fumble on the goal line like we did vs Seattle because we are about to come in there and upper cut them in the fuggin mouth.

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