ReFo: 49ers @ Saints, Week 10

Sam Monson hands out the game ball and runs through some of the highlight performances from San Francisco's overtime win in New Orleans.

| 3 years ago

ReFo: 49ers @ Saints, Week 10

2014-REFO-WK10-SF@NOBoth teams entered this game sitting at 4-4 but where that record left them was very different in their respective divisions. Such is the mess in the NFC South that 4-4 was a division-leading record (hell, 4-5 still is), but out West 4-4 was losing ground with the pace setters.

The 49ers needed the win more than the Saints did and in the end they achieved that victory with a couple of huge plays at key times. The Saints had their chances, but came up short when called upon.

San Francisco 49ers – Performances of Note

Colin Kaepernick, QB: +4.3

Breakdown: This was a fine game from Kaepernick based on his passing, with just a smattering of run plays and improvisation thrown in. Could have put up even better numbers but for some big drops by his receivers.

Signature Play: Q4, 1:39. In a play that came all too close to summing up this game, Kapernick delivers a strike on 3rd-and-10 only for Michael Crabtree to drop a tough catch along the sideline.

Chris Borland, LB: +5.9

Breakdown: The NFL had Borland down for 17 combined takles, and while the actual number is more like 15, that’s still a heck of a total for a player who was always around the football in this game.

Signature Stat: Was thrown at nine times in this game and though that resulted in seven catches, those catches went for a total of 41 yards and were often defensive stops.

Anquan Boldin, WR: -0.4

Breakdown: It’s not often a WR can drop four passes and still escape with a grade hovering around average. Boldin caught six passes for 95 yards and a score, but this was a game of what was left out there for a usually sure-handed receiver.

Signature: Boldin’s four drops are twice as many as we have ever recorded from him before and only the fifth multiple-drop game from him since 2007.

New Orleans Saints – Performances of Note

Jimmy Graham, TE: +2.2

Breakdown: Jimmy Graham was keeping the Saints in this game, and came so close to winning it for them at the death, hauling in the Drew Brees Hail Mary pass only to be flagged for the push off he used to secure it (aided by a nice flop by Perrish Cox). Graham was virtually uncoverable all game long.

Signature Play: Q2, 0:17. The downside to Graham being so tough to cover is that occasionally Brees will put a ball where it has no business being. This pass was thrown into triple coverage, and never had a prayer of being completed.

Kenny Vaccaro, S: -5.4

Breakdown: I had high hopes for Vaccaro and Byrd heading into this season. While injury removed Byrd from the equation, Vaccaro has been playing terribly at times and appears to be trying to replace the loss of missed tackles created by the departure of Malcolm Jenkins.

Signature Stat: Vaccaro missed another two tackles in this game, and now has 15 misses on the season. He has only had two games without a miss, but has two with three or more.

Keenan Lewis, CB: +2.1

Breakdown: This was a remarkable performance from Lewis because he played hurt for much of the game. After defending a deep pass, Lewis was removed from the game and actually told he was out, before arguing his way back on the field and making several key plays, all while limping badly from this injury.

Signature Stat: Allowed just one catch for 15 yards (and a score) all game, while breaking up two of the incomplete targets.

PFF Game Ball

The 49ers are stacked with individual performances that could easily have earned a game ball. Joe Staley and Chris Borland in particular can count themselves unlucky to miss out after strong outings, but this belongs to Colin Kaepernick, who was fantastic despite some pedestrian raw statistics.


Follow Sam on Twitter: @PFF_Sam

| Senior Analyst

Sam is a Senior Analyst at Pro Football Focus, as well as a contributor to ESPN and NBCSports.

  • Burke Hansen

    You mean the two handed shove that got Graham open?

    • Chris

      Cox has been taking lessons from Neymar. That was a Grade A flop on a minor push. Not sure if I’d have called it, given the situation but major kudos to the ref for having the guts to make that call in front of the home crowd.

      • Brandon Rousseau

        That minor push shows clearly on replay that Graham had both arms fully extended on the push. Not two fingers as he himself suggests.

        The call was correct regardless of whether Cox went down or not.

        • Chris

          He definitely extended his left arm, which is always a no-no. From the literally definition of the rulebook, it was pass interference. But those don’t always get called, especially against star players and especially at the end of the game on a play like that. Cox’s flop brought attention to the pushoff, which may not have been called otherwise.

          Like I said I’m not sure whether I would have called that or not, given the situation. I’d prefer to see the teams decide it themselves in OT.

          • Brandon Rousseau

            We can debate it – but the video clearly shows both arms extended (ie; his right arm was also up and touched/pushed Cox).

            From my 12 years of coaching high school, I can tell you that the logic associated with expecting refs to call something based on 1) who is a star player, and 2) at the end of the game, is something as a coach/fan that you don’t want to hinge the outcome of the game on. And to be fair, the prior offensive pass interference calls earlier in the game against the 49ers were actually more egregious & questionable.

            For what it’s worth – I felt the refs had mostly “no calls” during the game and let the teams play when there were several obvious calls to me which were missed…particularly o line holding calls on both sides of the ball.

            Anyway – that’s my two cents…

          • Tim Edell

            The call defensive pass interference on every nit-picking play- if they call it on the defensive they sure as hell better call it on the offensive. This was NO doubt the right call!

  • Jacob Lundeen

    Eric Wright said it best on Twitter, “If you think that was all flopping, you’ve never been pushed by a 6’7″ 240lb man before.” It was OPI and Graham is a sore loser for whining afterwards that he only placed two fingers on Cox and he gets grabbed all the time.

  • andre

    still a flop man bitch shit

  • PetEng

    Borland and Lynch appear to be major steals from the draft. Good for Niner fans.