After an embarrassing loss at home, George Kittle and his teammates claim there is still fight left in the 49ers' locker room.
The 43-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins was the 49ers' third in a row at home and the most lopsided. The one-time favorite to go back to the playoffs has shown lackluster play and no sense of urgency on the field.
There have been several injuries to the roster that predominantly stayed intact since their appearance in Super Bowl LIV, but most of the significant ones have been on the defensive side of the ball. The offense, which finally looked to be at full force heading into Sunday’s matchup showed few signs of life.
Kittle claims that he and his teammates have not given up on the season. On the contrary, the energy and attitude that the group had when they were the young upstarts heading into the 2017 season seems to have all but vanished.
“The fight is there,” Kittle said on Sunday. “We got the guys. We don’t have guys that want to jump off the ship. The fight is there.”
The offense was unable to establish the run game and the team was quickly down 14-0 in the first quarter. The 49ers could only muster 259 yards of total offense compared to the Dolphins' whopping tally of 436 yards.
Kyle Juszczyk agreed with Kittle that not all is lost as they approach the toughest stretch of their season. Preseason predictions slated the 49ers to be at least 4-1 or better prior to hosting the Los Angeles Rams and then heading out on the road to face the New England Patriots and NFC West rival Seattle Seahawks.
“The thing is, there’s still so much fight in this team,” Juszczyk said. “There’s still so much energy, so much tenacity on the sideline and so much belief. Even when it’s the third quarter and we’re down three scores, you still feel it from guys.”
Kittle shared that the team will go through its usual 24-hour process of grieving and move forward. There will be a lot of self-reflection and critical analysis of the game film but Kittle took ownership saying he needs to play better along with the four captains and remaining veterans on the offense.
“All we can do is watch the film, reflect, and see where we sucked at which was a lot of places including myself,” Kittle said. “We just got to get better.”
Jimmy Garoppolo, who was benched after a dismal first half of football claims the team has not given up. He shared that even from the sidelines in the second half that he could feel the desire from his teammates to stay the course.
"You could see it after the game," Garoppolo said. "This one hurt. It hurt all of us after the game. It's a tough situation to be in, but we’ve got some dogs in this locker room. We’ve got guys in this locker room that know what it takes to win, know how to do it and it's just about going out there and doing it now.”