The Green Bay Packers do not have any more trips to the West Coast scheduled in the 2019 regular season.
For the Packers, that’s a relief as Green Bay was thoroughly dominated for the second time by a California team in the past month.
This time the San Francisco 49ers whipped the Packers, 37-8, on a national stage to reinforce themselves as the NFC’s top team with a 10-1 record.
Green Bay was outplayed and outcoached in this highly anticipated matchup in Santa Clara, Calif., and head coach Matt LaFleur offered no excuses.
“I’m disappointed in myself with how we got outcoached and we got outplayed,” he said. “The bottom line it’s unacceptable. We have to look at ourselves. There’s a lot to correct if we want to be the team we want to be.”
The Packers fell to 8-3 and into a first-place tie with the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC North Division.
The stats told the story of this one:
San Francisco: 339 total yards, Green Bay 198 yards.
49ers: 227 passing yards, Packers 81
San Francisco: 5 sacks for 38 yards, Green Bay 3 for 26 yards
49ers: 4 of 12 first down conversions, Packers 1 of 15
On this night, Jimmy Garappolo completely outplayed Aaron Rodgers, completing 14 of 26 passes for 253 yards and two touchdowns and no interceptions. His sterling 145.8 quarterback rating reflected his complete command of the 49ers offense that compiled 339 total yards.
Rodgers finished with just 106 yards passing—the lowest total of his career with 30 or more passing attempts—and a 75.8 quarterback rating. Starting tackle Bryan Bulaga was lost to a knee injury in the first half, which weakened the Packers offensive line against a relentless 49ers pass rush.
Tight end George Kittle’s return after a two-game absence from an ankle injury ignited the San Francisco offense Sunday night.
He not only bolstered the run game with his blocking, but also caught six passes for 129 yards, including the game-clinching touchdown late in the third quarter. Kittle completely fooled the Green Bay secondary on a 61-yard touchdown play to answer the Packers’ lone touchdown for a commanding 30-8 cushion.
The San Francisco defense more than lived up to its billing.
From the game’s opening drive, the 49ers defense dominated Rodgers and the Packers offense. On the second play, Rodgers was sacked and fumbled, with star rookie Nick Bosa recovering at the Packers 2-yard line.
One play later the 49ers led 7-0, and that lead was 13-0 until two quick scores in the final minute of the half pushed the lead to 23-0 at intermission.
Rodgers was under extreme pressure the entire contest, and the Packers were held to just 60 total yards in the first half and zero points. The 49ers sacked Rodgers five times (Arik Armstead had two) and limited Green Bay to just 1 of 15 on third down conversions (7%).
Green Bay showed a glimpse of life by making it 23-8 late in the third quarter as Rodgers hit Davante Adams with his first touchdown pass of the season and the 2-point conversion. Then came Kittle’s back-breaking 61-yarder to seal the victory.
The Packers travel to the New York Giants Sunday for a 12 p.m. contest, which will be televised exclusively on FOX 25/48 in Western Wisconsin.