David White of the San Francisco Chronicle writes that the San Francisco 49ers have jumped back into the NFC West title hunt with a dominating, 27-6 win over the Arizona Cardinals down in the desert. The Niners, who started the season at 0-5, have now won four of their last six games.
But the Niners will have to go the rest of the season without Frank Gore, who broke his hip against Arizona. Reserve running back Brian Westbrook played well in place of Gore, finishing with 136 yards on 23 carries and a touchdown.
You probably already saw this already, but Arizona quarterback Derek Anderson had a meltdown when asked by Arizona Republic reporter Kent Somers about a moment caught on live television Monday night between he and offensive lineman Deuce Lutui that shows him laughing in the final moments of his team’s drubbing at the hands of the Niners. Check out the video below.
Somers explains himself here. I thought he did a nice job of presenting the question and certainly gave Anderson some wiggle room. Anderson obviously didn’t handle the situation well.
Here’s what Seattle quarterback Matt Hasselbeck had to say about the Seahawks losing four of their past five games by an average of 24 points and sitting a game below .500 at 5-6, still tied for the NFC West lead with St. Louis.
That’s a little weird, right?
“Oh, it’s real normal,” joked Hasselbeck. “Yeah, it’s weird. But I don’t think right now this team is focused on the division.
“I think what we need to focus on is just getting better, and improving and fixing our errors, and finding out who we are, and getting an identity in certain areas, whether that be running the ball, or short yardage or third down – whatever those things are. And just try to get better, try to just keep improving. Because focusing on that big goal at the end, there’s a lot of stuff that we need to do first to get that done.”
Steve Wyche of the NFL Network points to Seattle’s Jan. 2 contest against St. Louis as one of eight games down the stretch that will decide what teams make the playoffs.
Michael Lombardi of the NFL Network believes the Rams will emerge in the NFC West.
Andrew Brandt of the National Football Post provides a must-read primer in his first part of a series on the continuing NFL labor negotiations.