Vikings 0-0-0-3 — 3
49ers 0-7-3-10 — 20
Perhaps talk of the San Francisco 49ers’ demise was a bit overstated. Carlos Hyde ran for 168 yards and two touchdowns, the defense harassed Teddy Bridgewater into five sacks, and the ‘Niners rolled to an impressive 20-3 Week 1 victory in Jim Tomsula’s debut.
Read on for all the highlights:
Both FG Units Had a Miserable Start
The 49ers came firing out of the gate. Carlos Hyde had four carries for 28 yards, Colin Kaepernick completed a couple of passes to Torrey Smith and Garrett Celek and they easily moved into a red zone. However, the drive stalled after a holding penalty on center Marcus Martin, and Phil Dawson’s 28-yard field-goal attempt was blocked by Andrew Sendejo.
After a big return on the blocked field goal, it looked like the Vikings would strike first, but after three incompletions from Teddy Bridgewater–and no touches for Adrian Peterson–Blair Walsh missed his own field-goal attempt from 44 yards.
Colin Kaepernick Took a Massive Shot From Harrison Smith
And he popped right up after that hit. Quarterbacks often get criticized for being unable to take hits, but there’s no questioning Kaep’s toughness after that one.
Jarryd Hayne’s First NFL Touch Was a Lost Fumble
One of the best stories of the league, Jarryd Hayne made the lightning-fast transition from Rugby League superstar to NFL player this offseason. All preseason, he looked electric as a returner, and his debut was widely anticipated.
But his first touch went about as poorly as possible, as he muffed at punt at midfield, giving the ball to Minnesota. Thanks to the ‘Niners defense, which forced a quick punt, the miscue didn’t cost San Francisco any points.
To sum up, we had one blocked field goal, one missed field goal, one muffed punt, 110 total yards and zero points in the first quarter.
Carlos Hyde Put the 49ers on the Board in Spectacular Fashion
Most of the first half was not pretty, plagued by drops and penalties and sloppy play and all kinds of stuff that wasn’t very fun to watch.
But what Hyde did at the end of the first half was very, very pretty. Breaking the scoreless tie, Hyde capped a 93-yard drive when he took the handoff to the right, spun Everson Griffen out of his shoes, and raced back left for the 10-yard touchdown.
Hyde was the clear highlight in the first half, running for 83 yards on 12 carries.
Vikings Got Their 1st Points Early in the 4th Quarter
Spanning the third and fourth quarters, Minnesota put together its first positive drive of the game, going 66 yards on 11 plays. The red-zone offense left plenty to be desired, though, and the Vikes settled for the 37-yard field goal.
Hyde Doubled San Francisco’s Lead With His 2nd TD
It’s the Carlos Hyde Show. On San Francisco’s 80-yard touchdown drive, Hyde had six carries for 42 yards, including another beauty of a touchdown when he made an explosive cut and out-raced defenders to the end zone.
On the following drive, the powerful second-year running back ripped off another big run to up his total to 150 yards on the ground, passing Matt Forte for the Week 1 high in the NFL.
Tramaine Brock Picked Off Teddy Bridgewater
Bridgewater, pegged as a player to breakout in his second year, has struggled for much of his 2015 debut, and that culminated with a bad interception midway through the 4th quarter.
The ‘Niners turned the easy takeaway into three points, running their lead to 17 points.