Niners Nuggets from Rams Game

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Check out some of the other odds and ends from the 49ers victory in St. Louis. ** Tackling Machines

Linebacker Joe Staley lived up to his Pro Bowl tag with thirteen tackles, including a tackle of Steven Jackson on the final series for a 3-yard loss.

Even a stringer couldn't slow down Michael Lewis for long. The veteran safety tied Willis for the most tackles, including two stops for losses and two passes defensed. One of Lewis' tackles for a loss proved to be huge in the final outcome as the safety stopped Steven Jackson for a 3-yard loss on a first and goal from the 5 early in the fourth quarter. That gave the defense more breathing room with the unit forcing a Rams field goal two plays later. A touchdown would have likely put the game out of reach.

**Running on Empty

**The 49ers offense got very little production on the ground game that served up a double dose of the pass. With Frank Gore sidelined for the second week in a row, DeShaun Foster got the start, but he had only 12 opportunities to run the ball. He gained 36 yards for a 3.0 average.
Michael Robinson had one carry in the game for two yards, when he lined up as the quarterback in the wildcat formation.

**Scrambling Shaun

**Quarterback Shaun Hill actually led the 49ers rushing efforts with 4 scrambles for 45 yards, including a long one of 24 yards.

Hill also had a 17-yard scramble to convert a 3rd and 4 play from his 49-yardline and keep alive the 49ers first touchdown drive of the game.

**Sack Count

**The Rams offensive line hadn't allowed more than a single sack in the last three contests, but the 49ers defense managed to come up with three. Linebacker Parys Haralson, defensive end Justin Smith and linebacker Takeo Spikes accounted for the sacks. All three also were credited with an additional quarterback hurry.

Smith's sack came on the 49ers final defensive stance as the defensive end got to Marc Bulger on a 1st and 10 pass play from his 37-yardline for a 5-yard loss.

"They were letting us line up and go towards the end, and we were taking advantage of it," said Smith.

The 49ers meanwhile allowed four sacks, including two to linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa. Cornerback Fakhir Brown also got a strip on his corner blitz sack, but DeShaun Foster fortunately recovered for the 49ers. Leonard Little accounted for the other sack.

Turnovers

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The 49ers turned the ball over four times, including three interceptions by Shaun Hill and a fumble by Vernon Davis.

Davis committed the first turnover in the first quarter after catching a short throw that he turned into a 17-yard pickup. But Davis got reckless at the end of the play as safety OJ Atogwe took the ball from him for a turnover at the Rams 18-yardline.

Atogwe picked off Hill on the very next drive when the 49ers forced an underthrown pass to Davis, who had drawn double coverage.

Cornerback Ron Bartell accounted for the remaining two interceptions, which both led to St. Louis field goals.

While the Rams scored six points off the 49ers four mistakes, it was their own that put the final nail in the coffin.

Trailing by only a point, the Rams had all three timeouts and a 1:22 to work with to get into Josh Brown's field goal range.

But on 2nd and 13, Marc Bulger's throw to Donnie Avery was intercepted by Tarell Brown.

"I just jumped the route and he threw the ball," said Brown. "We didn't play a solid football game, and it was an ugly win, but we got it and that's the most important thing."

Brown appreciated the chance to make up for an earlier out route by Avery.

"The first out he ran, I should have gotten it, but I tripped so the second one I just felt like if he ran it again that I had to snatch it to get us out of this game," said Brown.

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Big Receiving Plays
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Wide receiver Josh Morgan caught a game-winning 48-yard touchdown pass for a new career-long score. Morgan previously had a long 34-yard touchdown catch against the Cardinals. The rookie now has three touchdowns on the year.

Isaac Bruce needed 60 yards to improve his standings in NFL history, but he wasn't the only 49ers receiver to notch that amount. Bryant Johnson also finished with 60 yards on four catches, including a clutch third down reception on each of the final two drives of the game.

**Numbers to Note

**The Rams held on to the ball for over twenty minutes in the first half, compared to less than ten for the 49ers offense.

Even in the fourth quarter when the 49ers outscored the Rams 14-3, St. Louis still had the time of possession battle in their favor, keeping the ball for 9:55 in comparison to 5:05 for San Francisco.

**Playing Time

**Barry Sims started at right tackle for Adam Snyder. Snyder suited up for the game but didn't play as he continues to deal with an ankle injury.

Safety Dashon Goldson also saw his first action since suffering a knee injury in the 49ers loss to the Giants. Goldson played on special teams and helped linebacker Jeff Ulbrich get down Dane Looker down on the opening punt of the game.

Goldson also took a few defensive snaps at the start of the fourth quarter after Michael Lewis suffered a shoulder stinger.

Challenges

Mike Singletary challenged a Steven Jackson fumble that officials ruled wasn't one since the back was already down prior to the ball coming out. The officials upheld the call as Singletary lost the challenge and a timeout.

**Jumping Too Soon

**The 49ers defense jumped offsides four times in the first half, including one by Aubrayo Franklin that negated an interception by Mark Roman. Ray McDonald accounted for two others, while Ron Fields also committed the same infraction.

**Special Teamers

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Kicker Joe Nedney connected on a 48-yard field goal in the first quarter, and then on a pivotal extra point in the final quarter to give the 49ers the one-point edge.

Nedney is now 31/31 on PAT's on the year, and 27 of 30 on field goals for a 90 percent conversion.

WR Dominique Zeigler made a diving ankle grab to prevent Dane Looker from getting big yards on a punt return in the third quarter.

Punter Andy Lee had 5 punts for 274 yards for a 54.8 average. He had one punt pinned inside the 20 at the 7-yardline.

Allen Rossum returned to action from his ankle injury, and handled both punt and kickoff returns. He had a long punt return of 17 yards that could have been longer had Kenneth Darby not made an ankle grab. On kickoffs, Rossum had a long return of 29 yards.

Tight end Sean Ryan also had a 14 yard kickoff return on a short kickoff.

**Character Builder

**The 49ers might not have had any business sweeping the series with the Rams, but rebounding from three and half quarters of play showed the kind of finish head coach Mike Singletary is after.

"They outplayed us for three and a half quarters," admitted defensive end Justin Smith. "But a sign of a good team is you keep fighting and you can win games like this. On paper, we should have lost this game by a landslide. But, we'll take it."

Linebacker Takeo Spikes was also asked if this game served as the classic example of why a team should never give up.

"It's so true because if people were looking at on TV, we had everything against us," said Spikes. "We were on the road against an opponent playing hard making plays and we stuck together. That's the only thing that matters."

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