HOUSTON – We learned the San Francisco 49ers are ready for the regular season and didn’t need to see much, if anything, from their starting units in a 40-13 win over the Houston Texans.
Here are the key observations from Thursday night’s fourth and final preseason game of 2014:
No Kap, No Problem
The 49ers elected to rest many veterans on this night. Several were identified before kick-off wearing red 49ers fitted hats and sneakers.
The biggest and most notable hat-wearing starter was quarterback
The only offensive starters to see the field were fullback
Even without key play-makers on offense, the 49ers produced their highest point total of the preseason.
Williams Gets Reps at NT
Joining him on the field were defensive tackles
ILB Competition Finished?
Does Thursday’s lineup mean
Rookie Chris Borland and second-year linebacker Nick Moody got the starts at inside ‘backer. Borland, however, made one last case to be in the starting 11.
Borland to the House
The rookie linebacker’s touchdown gave the 49ers a 24-6 lead in the third quarter. Borland led the 49ers with six tackles.
Rookie CBs Play Early
Johnson broke up a Case Keenum pass to force a Texans 41-yard field goal from kicker Chris Boswell.
Johnson recorded four tackles and the pass breakup in his first series of the game.
Cook and Morris came back in the game two possessions later for their rookie teammates. San Francisco employed a consistent cornerback rotation throughout the game; Johnson led the group with five tackles on the night.
The cornerback roster spots appear to be the most challenging decisions for the 49ers personnel staff.
New Backup Center
Looney replaced Daniel Kilgore in the second quarter. With rookie center
Gabbert Leads TD Drive
Gabbert started the night completing just one of his first six passes, the first completion being an 11-yard strike to Patton.
On Gabbert’s seventh throw, he rolled out of the pocket to his left, and fired a deep corner route to
Gabbert finished the 12-play, 84-yard scoring drive with a 14-yard touchdown pass to undrafted rookie tight end
Gabbert finished the half completing 4-of-11 passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. He posted an 85.4 quarterback rating and added 11 rushing yards on two carries.
Johnson Makes Case for Roster Spot
The 49ers didn’t carry three quarterbacks on the 53-man roster last year, but they could this season.
After a Chris Cook interception was returned down to Houston’s 13-yard line,
It happened to be a 13-yard touchdown pass to rookie wide receiver
In the third quarter, Johnson drove the 49ers offense into the red zone, but a short out pass to L’Damian Washington was intercepted by Houston cornerback Andre Hal and returned 78 yards for a Texans touchdown.
It appeared as though Johnson made an accurate throw, but his receiver was unable to locate it and Hal was able to get his hands on the ball and take it the distance.
Johnson responded with his second touchdown pass of the night. He found long snapper-turned tight end
Johnson finished the game completing 14-of-17 passes for 135 yards, with three touchdowns and one interception. He posted a 114.8 quarterback rating and added 34 rushing yards on six carries.
More Work for LaMichael
The third-year running back stayed busy in the preseason finale.
James led the 49ers with six carries for 39 rushing yards in the first half. He did not rush the ball in the second half, but he did stay involved on special teams. James fielded three kicks and two punts in the game, too.
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