Early on in the third quarter of San Francisco's season-opening victory over Pittsburgh, Christian McCaffrey put his elite ability on full display when he ran for a 65-yard touchdown.
But the downfield blocks McCaffrey received from receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Ray-Ray McLoud undoubtedly helped the play go for six points.
Quarterback Brock Purdy told reporters on Thursday that the play made for a fun moment in the film room.
"It was awesome,” Purdy said in his Thursday press conference. “I mean, the first time we watched it just everybody’s, you know the sounds that they make, like B.A.’s block first everyone going crazy about that. And then Ray-Ray coming, running around the corner, you could see Ray-Ray starting to run and then everyone’s like hyping him up and when he made his block, everyone was going crazy.”
From a bigger-picture perspective, that play is emblematic of the selflessness that’s permeated the 49ers’ locker room. When asked about it, Purdy called it “rare.”
"I think you have all this, stardom on a team and what not, and for everyone to just put the ego aside and be like, ‘Hey, we want to win. We want to win a Super Bowl and we’re going to do what it takes,’” Purdy said. “And I think what we all know is what it takes is to put the ego aside. If I don’t get all these yards and catches and touchdowns for one game, but our other guy does, like, ‘Hey, I did my part to help win.’ And that’s what we all care about here.
“And really the leaders, the guys that have been here for a while have set that standard. It’s not like just [a] certain guy, like we’ve all learned from the older guys that have come before us. So the culture, the organization here, that’s the standard.”
That all comes together on a play like McCaffrey’s long touchdown.
“That’s what we’re talking about, like not having ego, being selfless, being able to make blocks like that even though those are guys that catch balls, score touchdowns, all that kind of stuff,” Purdy said. “But being willing to block in the run game down the field we all feed off it and so we got to maintain it and continue that.”
The 49ers will try to do just that against the Rams in Los Angeles on Sunday.