Warrick Dunn carried 27 times for 100 yards and a touchdown to lead the Atlanta Falcons to a 20-16 victory over the San Francisco 49ers, who suffered their sixth consecutive loss.
Playing with a taped-up throwing shoulder, Alex Smith continues to not be the answer for the 49ers. He completed only 17 of 38 passes for 149 yards, was intercepted three times and sacked once.
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On second-and-goal from the 49ers 10-yard line with just over nine minutes to play, San Francisco quarterback Alex Smith completed a pass to tight end Vernon Davis, who would have been in for the go-ahead touchdown if not for a shoestring tackle at the 1 by Falcons safety Chris Crocker. Lawyer Milloy sliced through the line to dump Michael Robinson for a 3-yard loss on third-and-goal, and the 49ers settled for Joe Nedney's third field goal.
BY THE NUMBERS
155: Atlanta rushed for a season-high 155 yards.
3 for 13: The 49ers converted on just 3 of 13 third-down attempts.
2001 and 56: The game was blacked out locally -- the first time that's happened in Atlanta since 2001. The Georgia Dome was far from packed after 56 consecutive sellouts, the city clearly losing interest in a losing squad that no longer has Michael Vick to liven things up.
THEY SAID IT
"I was cheating a bit on the play, but I was fortunate enough to get back and chase him down and get the tackle. They haven't shown that play much this season, and they thought they were going to be able to make big plays, but they weren't able to do that."
-- Crocker on his game-saving tackle of Davis
The offense is completely broken. If it's not Smith misfiring or wide receivers dropping balls, it's the running backs fumbling or the offensive line failing to block.
At this rate, the Mike Nolan era won't last much longer in San Francisco.
Here's the bright side: At 2-6, the 49ers are only two games behind the NFC West leading Seahawks. Things could be worse.