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What We Learned from 49ers vs. Bengals

View select images from the San Francisco 49ers Week 15 matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals.

The San Francisco 49ers committed four turnovers and lost for the fourth time in their last five games, falling to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, 24-14.

With the defeat, the 49ers are now 4-10 on the season. They will return to action next week in Detroit when they battle the Lions.

Here's what we learned from the team's performance versus Cincinnati.

Comeback Falls Short

The 49ers trailed by 21 points at halftime but fought back at the end of the game to make things close. 

Bruce Miller notched his first career rushing touchdown to get San Francisco on the board. The fullback plowed in from 1-yard out after Anquan Boldin moved the 49ers into the red zone with a 29-yard grab.

After a Phil Dawson field goal was blocked, San Francisco responded on its next possession by marching 72 yards in 11 plays for another score. Torrey Smith kept the drive alive with a 17-yard catch on third down off of a tipped pass. Moments later, Blaine Gabbert found Boldin in the back of the end zone for a 15-yard touchdown strike.

Trailing by 10 points with two minutes remaining in regulation, the 49ers kicked onsides and recovered the loose ball. Nick Bellore came up with the football at the bottom of the pile.

The rally ended, however, when the Bengals picked off Gabbert near the end zone on a pass intended for Jerome Simpson.

Gabbert finished his day 30-of-50 passing for 295 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. Two of those picks came on deflected passes. Boldin led the team with eight catches for 74 yards, although he fumbled once. The veteran now sits one reception away from 1,000 on his career.

Williams Leads Strong Defensive Showing

San Francisco allowed three touchdowns on Sunday, but the 24 points the Bengals scored were a bit deceiving.

Only one of Cincinnati's drives that resulted in points went longer than 36 yards. Instead, the Bengals capitalized on good field position multiple times to find the end zone. Turnovers and special teams set Cincinnati up for success, but the 49ers defense managed to hang tough.

Ian Williams had a monster day on the field, drawing two holding penalties, forcing and recovering a fumble and tallying a sack.

NaVorro Bowman continued his Pro Bowl-caliber season as well, finishing Sunday with a game-high 12 tackles, including one for loss on a fourth-down snap.

Ahmad Brooks, Jimmie Ward and Eric Reid all had sacks on AJ McCarron as well.

Overall, San Francisco limited Cincinnati to 242 total yards and 14 first downs.

Rotation Changes

With Alex Boone inactive, Andrew Tiller got the start at left guard while Marcus Martin moved over to right guard. Daniel Kilgore, who missed the first three months of the season while rehabbing a leg injury, received his first start of the year at center.

With Aaron Lynch sidelined, Eli Harold was announced as the team's starting outside linebacker opposite Brooks. Corey Lemonier and Garrett Celek also mixed in at the position in different situations. Harold recorded a tackle for loss and a quarterback hit on the day.

Other changes included Dontae Johnson replacing starter Kenneth Acker at cornerback at various points on Sunday.

Injury News

Shaun Draughn suffered a knee injury in the first half and did not return to the game. Before getting hurt, the running back carried the ball nine times for 38 yards and caught one pass for four yards.

Travaris Cadet and Kendall Gaskins filled the void after Draughn's departure. Gaskins caught six passes for 52 yards.

Martin sustained a head injury in the second half and was later diagnosed with a concussion. The 49ers adjusted their offensive line by moving Erik Pears right guard and inserting rookie Trent Brown at right tackle.

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