49ers vs. Buccaneers: Live Grades and Analysis for San Francisco

Phil G@FuturePhilGCorrespondent IDecember 15, 2013

Dec 15, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore (21) runs with the ball as Tampa Bay Buccaneers free safety Dashon Goldson (38) and cornerback Johnthan Banks (27) defend during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers (10-4) defeat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-10), 33-14. Despite the discrepancy in the score, this game was far closer than many expected.

It was clear the 49ers were the better team, but credit the Buccaneers for putting up a worthy fight. This was anything but a setback for the Buccaneers.

The 49ers can secure entry into the playoffs if the Arizona Cardinals lose to the Tennessee Titans this afternoon.

In Week 16, the 49ers will play the Atlanta Falcons in Candlestick Park on Monday Night Football.

Check below for final grades and analysis.



San Francisco 49ers - 33

Tampa Bay Buccaneers - 14

San Francisco 49ers Grades
Position UnitFirst-Half GradeFinal Grade
Pass OffenseAB+
Run OffenseB+A-
Pass DefenseB-B
Run DefenseA+A+
Special TeamsBA
vs. Buccaneers Week 15


Game Analysis for the San Francisco 49ers

Pass Offense: The passing offense for the 49ers slowed down in the second half, but Colin Kaepernick was still effective overall. Michael Crabtree seems to be getting more comfortable coming off the injured Achilles. Kaepernick finished the game with 202 passing yards and two touchdowns.

Run Offense: Despite Frank Gore’s 21 carries, the 49ers used a committee approach to attack the Buccaneers defense. Three different players, including Kaepernick, carried the ball at least two times.

Pass Defense: After his recent struggles the past few weeks, Mike Glennon bounced back in a huge way against this 49ers fourth-ranked pass defense. Vincent Jackson and Timothy Wright proved very effective, totaling a combined 12 catches for 140 yards and two touchdowns.

Run Defense: Bobby Rainey and this Buccaneers rushing attack was shut down by a 49ers defense that hasn’t given up a 100-yard rusher in 17 straight games. The Buccaneers finished the day with just 39 yards on the ground.

Special Teams: A botched kick return by the Buccaneers led to a Kendall Hunter touchdown on special teams, which effectively iced this game. 49ers Kicker Phil Dawson has made his last 24 field goals.

Coaching: While the offense slowed down in the second half, credit should be given to the 49ers for their play-calling. Including this victory, the 49ers are 8-0 when Gore carries the ball at least 17 times.

Dec 15, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; San Francisco 49ers kicker Phil Dawson (9) kicks a field goal against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports


First-Half Analysis for the San Francisco 49ers

Pass Offense: With all of his weapons aboard, Kaepernick has turned in a excellent first half. Kaepernick was efficient with 11-of-13 passing, and he was patient when it came to his reads and progressions. Kaepernick finished the first half with 148 yards passing and two touchdowns.

Run Offense: Welcome back, Frank Gore. After a tough four-game stretch, Gore and this offensive line pounded a rather solid Buccaneers front seven. In fact, the 49ers have played well collectively on the ground in the first half, to the tune of 88 rushing yards.

Pass Defense: Glennon's struggles continued for much of the first half until an impressive two-minute drive that led to a Vincent Jackson score. Wright and Jackson combined for 53 yards and a touchdown on five catches.

Run Defense: Buccaneers running back Bobby Rainey, who has rushed for over 100 yards in two of his last four games, was held to just 19 yards in the first half. As expected, the Buccaneers offensive line is struggling to stop Justin Smith and this 49ers front seven.

Special Teams: Dawson hasn’t missed a field goal since Week 4. The 49ers coverage unit played sound football in the first half, though I would like to see more from LaMichael James.

Coaching: Because of a Jim Harbaugh challenge flag, the 49ers used two of their three timeouts in the first quarter. The 49ers pass-run ratio (13:18) was excellent in the first half.