Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Seven Things to Watch 7 for Sunday

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Seven Things to Watch 7 for Sunday

Article excerpt

CHASING COLIN

QB Colin Kaepernick entered the Nov. 11 contest against the Rams with the 49ers trailing 14-7, and rallied them to a tie with his running as much as his throwing. "He's a good thrower, but he can also make plays with his legs," Rams CB Cortland Finnegan said. "When you game plan for him, you tend to do some things differently. It's just one of those things where you've gotta keep him in the pocket, and try to distract him and give him different looks." Outside containment as well as lane integrity by the defensive tackles are key.

BLITZES ANYONE?

The Rams aren't a heavy blitzing team, and they went after Kaepernick with extra pass rushers only eight times once he entered the November contest midway through the second quarter. He went 3- for-5 passing against blitzes, for 37 yards. On one blitz he gained 16 yards rushing, not by scrambling but on what looked like a predetermined naked bootleg. The Rams also sacked him twice on blitzes, one resulting in a strip-sack by now-injured LB Mario Haggan, but San Francisco recovered the fumble.

UNDERRATED

WR Michael Crabtree always seems to find the end zone against the Rams. He has scored a TD in each of his past five games against them, including a 14-yard score three weeks ago. On the play, Crabtree got a free release in the slot because Finnegan was blitzing, and scored after safety Craig Dahl missed a tackle at the 8. "He's definitely underrated, but he's a talent," Finnegan said. "He wasn't a first-round draft pick for nothing. He made plays at Texas Tech and he's making ' em in the league." FABULOUS FRANK

Despite all the Kaepernick buzz, it's still all about stopping RB Frank Gore when it comes to defending the 49ers' offense. Gore barely missed logging his fifth 100-yard game vs. the Rams three weeks ago, finishing with 97. He scored his 12th TD in 12 career games against the Rams. …

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