Posted by Greg A. Bedard December 16, 2012 10:23 PM
FOXBOROUGH – A few thoughts as the Patriots trail 17-3 at halftime:
- The Patriots are fortunate to still be in this game. They could be down about 27-3 at this point if Colin Kaepernick didn’t fumble three snaps from center in the first half.
- Tom Brady was intercepted but saved a touchdown when he tackled Carlos Rogers at the 5-yard line. 49ers fumbled on the second play to give the ball back to the Patriots.
- 49ers ran a fake punt for 31 yards but failed to get any points when David Akers missed a field goal from 39 yards.
- Shane Vereen fumbled on the next possession, but the 49ers blew at least a field goal when Kaepernick fumbled from center on fourth-and-1.
- The 49ers did a great job taking Wes Welker (zero catches on two targets) away. They basically doubled him all the time. Patriots are going to find an answer for that.
- Basically, the Patriots’ offense was throwing at 49ers cornerback Tarell Brown and running and throwing with Danny Woodhead, who was exploiting his matchup against the linebackers.
- Patriots front seven did a decent job for the most part after they switched from a 4-3 to a 3-4. But that limits Chandler Jones’ effectiveness because he basically has to played 3-4 end. Dont’a Hightower is the OLB opposite Rob Ninkovich in the 3-4.
- The Patriots did have some trouble towards the end of the first half with contain against Kaepernick.
- The 49ers were able to hit some of the open receivers the Patriots have allowed the past few weeks, which inferior opponents missed.
- The Patriots’ offensive line also had some issues, but it wasn’t terrible. The Patriots will probably have to go more no huddle in the second half.
- Huge 49ers possession to start the second half.
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