That was unrelenting. As it turns out, sometimes, football can be simple. On Sunday, the evident talent and coaching gaps between the 49ers and Jaguars were met with a fitting result, a 30-10 bludgeoning.
At one point in the first half, San Francisco had run 34 offensive plays and controlled the ball for roughly 20 minutes. Jacksonville had run four offensive plays in less then two minutes. One of those plays was a fumble.
The Jaguars are so bad that Kyle Shanahan’s first-drive conservative decision to go for a field goal instead of a touchdown, wasn’t punished.
This came at the end of an opening 20-play, 13-minute drive. It was kept alive at crucial junctures by a defensive holding call, a Jauan Jennings fumble recovery, and an offsides call.
But as conservative as that call was, it was of no import.
Jacksonville immediately went three-and-out, and the 49ers responded with a seven-play, 80-yard touchdown drive courtesy of Deebo Samuel, again being used as a running back.
He was leaned on heavily in the backfield without Elijah Mitchell in the lineup, taking eight carries for 79 yards.
On the ensuing Jaguars drive, Josh Norman channeled his inner Peanut Tillman and punched the ball out from Laviska Shenault, for a Fred Warner recovery.
After another seven plays, Brandon Aiyuk had a touchdown, made possible by Jennings getting under the skin of Rayshawn Jenkins, who threw a punch at Jennings, got ejected, and negated a third-down stop by Jacksonville.
While this all materialized against a horrendously-coached Jaguars team which was asking for a reason to capitulate, there were still long-term causes for optimism.
Jimmy Garoppolo was efficient yet again, going 16-for-22 for 164 yards and a couple touchdowns. He was buoyed by a 49ers run game which ran it 40-plus times (42 on Sunday, 44 on Monday) for the second-straight week.
One of the great plagues of the early part of the 49ers’ season was their inability to cover deep patterns without committing defensive pass interference. That was typified by corners who failed to turn their heads towards the ball and running into receivers.
Emmanuel Moseley had a late first half pass defense that was the inverse of those early-season failures. He was glued to the receiver, kept his head up and defended the ball on a third-down prayer which rightfully went unanswered.
Those mistakes were gifted to them by the Jaguars, who committed a bevy of first-half penalties to allow the 49ers to trudge down the field at whatever pace they preferred.
Nick Bosa led a consistent pass rush, securing two sacks on the same drive at the start of the fourth quarter. Perhaps even more notably, he drew a pair of holding calls, which referees have been failing to call for much of this season.
“Definitely don’t think about it during the game, but obviously see some reps on tape where it looks pretty obvious,” Bosa lamented this week.
After Sunday’s domineering performance, he’s up to 10.0 sacks on the season, a career-high.
Trey Sermon, also got offensive game experience for the first time since he had one touch against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 5, rushing 10 times for 32 yards, and catching a 23-yard pass on a wheel route to set the 49ers up for a first-half ending field goal.
There was not much to malign on Sunday, with any points of criticism coming in the second half, when the offense stalled after the result was secured.
There was, though, a legitimate travesty in this game. Trent Williams was targeted in the end zone on third down. Somehow, the Jaguars, who looked lost and are decidedly poorly coached, managed to not just pick up Williams, who lined up as a tight end, but they doubled teamed him.
That, and Samuel not reaching 1,000 receiving yards on the season, were perhaps the only real disappointment from the game, but neither of those are actually meaningful. The 49ers did what they had to do, which is beat a bad team. They did that, and at 5-5, are now back to .500.