Today was a supposed to be a test for the San Francisco 49ers. The Carolina Panthers were coming to town and they were bringing a win streak, a top defense, a hot young QB and a bye week. Well, it turns out they packed too light, as the 49ers dominated to the tune of 51-13 to stay undefeated.
Other than one bad Jimmy Garoppolo interception and a safety, the 49ers, just like their 1994 throwback uniforms, were on fire. Here are Fangirl Takeaways from the day.
Nick Bosa, Defensive Player of the Year?
Rookie defensive end Nick Bosa has been an absolute nightmare for quarterbacks and today was no exception. Bosa sacked Panthers’ quarterback Kyle Allen three times, had a PBU, and had his first career interception, an interception that he ran back 46 yards, while stiff arming two guys. George Kittle called him an honorary tight end. That only seems fair on National Tight Ends Day.
The crowd at Levi’s Stadium broke into a “Bosa!” chant and the unassuming Bosa said, “I liked it.”
“He got me on a play before, cut me really good,” Bosa said. “So, just played the cut that time and saw the quarterback’s eyes and just jumped. Then, it went right into my hands.”
Head coach Kyle Shanahan called Bosa’s day “pretty damn impressive.”
“He’s an incredibly poised player,” said cornerback Richard Sherman. “He’s everything you could ask for. He’s probably one of the best picks in ten years with just how he’s played and he’s played like this since Day 1…He plays with such a savviness and such a poise, such an aggression, that it’s like he’s been playing on this level. You can tell he’s been coached up great at a young age. Obviously, his family has a great pedigree, but he’s an incredible talent, and he’s so humble. He’s a humble, nice guy. I don’t know what he does in his free time, but I think he plays video games and he comes to work and he wreaks havoc. He deserves Player of the Week or Rookie of the Week or Rookie of the Year, everything…[H]e should be in line for Defensive MVP.”
On top of the three sacks, Bosa had four more tackles and TFLs. He leads the 49ers seven sacks. Nick Bosa is basically everything.
“I think he was born like that,” said linebacker Kwon Alexander. “There are a lot of people that work hard to get where he is. He practices hard. He practices his technique a lot. He goes out there and shows what he can do. He has just been amazing for us.”
Overall, the 49ers’ defense had another stellar day, with seven sacks and three interceptions. Coming into the game, Allen had yet to throw an interception. Meet the 49ers defense.
Tevin Coleman, Touchdown Maker
Running back Tevin Coleman had a day, racking up four touchdowns – three rushing and one receiving – 105 yards rushing and 13 yards receiving.
Coleman, who missed time with an ankle injury earlier in the season, entered the day with 227 rushing yards on 60 carries. It’s safe to say his ankle is fine now.
““He can fly, man.” said quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. “We had a trap play and he was one-on-one with the safety and he just burned him with pure speed. He did everything today. Tevin was awesome.”
That safety was Tre Boston and Coleman ran right by him to the tune of a 48-yard touchdown that put the 49ers up 27-3 late in the first half.
The 49ers signed Coleman, who was with Shanahan in Atlanta, to a two-year, $10 million contract this offseason. Turns out, that was a good move.
“Tevin is very similar to how he was when I was in Atlanta. Just his skillset and everything, doesn’t change,” said Shanahan. “I had him his first two years and I think he is more of a veteran now. He’s been through a lot more. I think everyone matures in this league. Tevin was great right away, but I think he knows what he wants. He knows how to play in the offense. Tevin can play in any offense, so that doesn’t matter. But, he had some good looks today and when Tevin has a good look he can usually get it across the endzone. That’s what he got.”
With just three days of practice under his belt, new 49ers’ receiver Emmanuel Sanders was an immediate value-add against the Panthers. Garoppolo’s first pass of the day was a four-yard completion to his new receiver. Sanders’ second reception was a touchdown. And that’s how you make an impact.
“All week the energy has been so positive here,” said Sanders. “This locker room is just amazing with a great group of players, and great personalities around here. I showed up today expecting the same results in personality. I will never forget going out into the tunnel with these guys. Everybody was laughing and smiling, I was like man this is football, this is fun. I am blessed to be here.”
The feeling is mutual from his new QB.
“It’s always hard out there, but, having a guy like that, a savvy vet like E just makes you comfortable as a quarterback,” said Garoppolo. “To have him have a great day today, it’ll only get better from here.”
The 49ers have a short week before they head to Arizona for Thursday Night Football.