In suffering their first back-to-back loss in exactly one year (Week 6-7, 2022), the Niners lacked the extra play that defined their early string of hits. The defense couldn’t bother Cousins and didn’t generate any sacks while the secondary was torched by a Vikings crew that isn’t Justin Jefferson. On offense, Brock Purdy threw two interceptions and Christian McCaffrey fumbled for the first possession of the night.
After four wins in their first five games, the Niners have now lost back-to-back contests, coming up just short each time.
“I think the thing right now is we’ve got to find ways to win the ugly games, the ones where it doesn’t look good and find a way,” linebacker Fred Warner told ESPN. “Sure we can win, 30-10, but who are we and what are we going to do when we’re down and have to come back and win a game?”
The Niners were missing key pieces Monday night, including star left tackle Trent Williams and wide receiver Deebo Samuel, but it’s not like their two losses came against healthy opponents. The Browns were missing Nick Chubb, Deshaun Watson, Joel Bitonio and others. The Vikings didn’t have Jefferson on Monday, but still put up 378 yards.
Kyle Shanahan knows his club needs to move on quickly from the prime-time loss before it snows any further.
“We got beat,” the 49ers head coach said, via the official transcript. “I think now you have to take it as a person. We got a game here, I think tomorrow when we wake up, it will be in five days. this for a while. We can’t sit here and worry about what happened before this happened. We have to make sure we do everything between now and Sunday when the game is over against the Bengals. Then we enter our bye week. I just looked at our boys now. We have about five and a half days left. Gotta focus on this, make sure we go into the bye week 6-2, not 5-3.”
To put it the Belichick way: They’re headed to Cincinnati.