SANTA CLARA – The game was part tragedy, part comedy. It was tragicomedy.
The 49ers lost at home to the Los Angeles Rams 39-10 — a comically lopsided score.
Before Sunday’s game, the 49ers unveiled a larger-than-life statue of Dwight Clark making The Catch. Clark died tragically of ALS on June 4.
The current 49ers receivers no-showed the game, doing nothing to honor Clark’s legacy and the most iconic touchdown catch in franchise and NFL history. They caught four passes total. They played like the Invisible Men. It was comical.
The 49ers also honored their 1994 team, which won the Super Bowl. They invited 20 former coaches and players from the championship squad and gave them a ceremony on the field during halftime. Steve Young, Jerry Rice and George Seifert all were there.
The current 49ers even wore all-white jerseys, which the players haven’t worn since the 1994 season. Another homage to their glorious past, although the current 49ers did not come close to honoring the excellence of the 1994 team, which lost just one home game all season.
While the 49ers celebrated that team and its pristine jerseys, the current team committed four turnovers, lost its second straight game at home by double digits and fell to 1-6 on the season. Comedy.
To top it all off, R&B singer Montell Jordan sang his smash hit “This Is How We Do It” during halftime. That song came out a week after the 1994 49ers won the Super Bowl. Another tribute to their era of dominance.
During Jordan’s performance, he changed the lyrics to the chorus. Instead of singing, “South Central does it like nobody does,” he sang, “The 49ers do it like nobody does.”
Jordan had a point. This year’s 49ers commit turnovers like nobody does and lose games like nobody does. On Sunday, they embarrassed themselves, their alumni, ownership and fans like nobody does. High comedy.
“It’s always embarrassing when you lose like that,” head coach Kyle Shanahan explained during his postgame press conference. “We’ve got pride and we’re also confident in what we do. We’re not proud of our record right now. We’re definitely not proud of today. We’re not into any moral victories here. We were as far away from one as we could have been today. We have to fix the turnovers. Once we fix the turnovers, then we have a chance to start playing football.”
The 49ers defense played football Sunday — decent football. It limited the Rams offense to 185 passing yards and 4.2 yards per rush. The defense was not problem.
The offense was. It did not come ready to play.
After the defense forced the Rams to go three and out during their first series of the game, the 49ers offense got the ball and gave it right back. C.J. Beathard fumbled while taking a sack and the Rams recovered.
“I thought we were moving the ball (on offense) pretty well on our first drive,” Shanahan said. “Then, we fumbled. It’s hard to defend when you have results like that.”
The 49ers’ offense killed the 49ers defense, which repeatedly had to defend a short field. After Beathard’s fumble in the first quarter, the Rams took over from the 49ers’ 44-yard line, drove 27 yards, kicked a field goal and took a 3-0 lead.