49ers: Fangio dials up the blitz, pass rush still lacking
After seeing his defense pressure the quarterback on just 22.2% of pass plays through two weeks, 49ers defensive coordinator Vic Fangio decided to turn things up a notch last Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.
The 49ers had blitzed on just five of 90 (5.6%) passing snaps through Week 2, and had yet to send a defensive back at the quarterback this season.
San Francisco blitzed Stanton on 14 of his 40 drop-backs (35.0%) and sent defensive backs Jimmie Ward (seven times), Perrish Cox (four), and James McCray (one) after the quarterback on various occasions.
Unfortunately for the 49ers, bringing more rushers did not provide the needed boost. Stanton was pressured on just 10 of those 40 drop-backs (25.0%) and had a 98.5 passer rating on the day.
The 49ers twice sent seven rushers after Stanton and both times it ended with a negative result. In the first quarter on 3rd-and-10, the defense sacked Stanton for the only time Sunday but the play was nullified by an illegal contact penalty downfield. In the fourth quarter, they tried sending seven again and Stanton checked it down to John Carlson for 13 yards to pick up a key first down on 3rd-and-12.