Jimmy G shares halftime message to 49ers in win over Chargers originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
The 49ers picked up a critical win over the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday Night Football, but they didn’t make it easy on themselves.
Justin Herbert immediately put the Chargers on the board with a touchdown pass to DeAndre Carter on the opening drive of the game. LA built up a 13-3 lead before the 49ers finally found the end zone, and were up 16-10 heading into halftime.
After a sluggish start, the 49ers proceeded to dominate the second half.
The 49ers’ defense held Herbert and the Chargers scoreless over the game’s final 30 minutes. Offensively, Christian McCaffrey gave the 49ers their first lead of the game with 7:54 left in the fourth quarter with a 2-yard rushing touchdown. Robbie Gould hit a short field goal in the final minute and the team held on for a 22-16 victory.
What led to the second-half turnaround? Garoppolo says it began with the team looking in the mirror.
“We were killing ourselves in the first half and we knew it,” Garoppolo told NBC’s Melissa Stark after the game. “Especially offensively, we were killing ourselves with mistakes. Once we cleaned those up, I thought we put together some good drives and put some points on the board.”
San Francisco had its full array of skill position players available for Sunday’s game, including Elijah Mitchell and Deebo Samuel, who returned from injuries. Along with those two players and another productive evening from McCaffrey, Garoppolo gave some shine to two of the 49ers’ young receivers.
“It’s awesome. It makes my job a lot easier,” Garoppolo said of getting key players back. “A couple of those guys made some big plays tonight, especially with the run after the catch. Jauan [Jennings] made a couple. [Brandon Aiyuk] had a couple third downs at the end there. Just those little things, guys stepping up in big moments, that’s the difference.”
Aiyuk eclipsed 80 receiving yards for the fourth straight game, collecting 84 on six receptions. He also helped set up McCaffrey’s touchdown with a 24-yard catch and run on third-and-10. Jennings also made a pair of key receptions on the drive and helped the team escape a second-and-20 situation in their own territory.
Garoppolo and Co. will look to keep things going in Week 11 during their "Monday Night Football" clash with the Arizona Cardinals in Mexico City.