Hey there football fans, and welcome to the NFL Down Under ‘Team of the Week’ column for Week 6. As our loyal readers we figured we should hear which team you think played best each week, instead of having us rant and rave in our narrow-minded and subjective ways. Every Tuesday we will send out a Facebook post and tweet, and based on your responses the team with the most mentions will be crowned weekly champion.
THE NFL DOWN UNDER WEEK 6 WINNER IS:
THE SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS!Record- 5-1 Week 6 Result- San Francisco 49ers 25 – Detroit Lions 19. It was the matchup of the year. The 4-1 49ers went into Ford Field to take on the 5-0 Lions. San Francisco gave up 120 yards off 15 penalties. They lost the turnover battle 2-0. They were 2-14 in third down efficiency. Alex Smith fumbled the ball, and threw a crucial interception. But the 49ers did all they had to do, and that was win. Divisional Standing- First in the NFC West, +70 point differential.
Standout Players- Frank Gore. Is there any other player other than Aaron Rodgers who is playing as well as he is at the moment? Gore collected 141 rushing yards of 15 carries with a TD, and is having an absurd season to date. He’s ran for 393 yards and three TDs over the past three weeks. Rookie OLB Aldon Smith had a day out and contributed to a ferocious defence that had five sacks and 10 QB hits. His two sacks and a safety in the second quarter saw him play arguably his best game of the season. NaVorro Bowman also deserves a mention for his 14 tackles, eight of them solo. He's a fighter.
What it Means- The 49ers are really, really strong. Jim Harbaugh has broken their losing mentality and instilled genuine belief in the Bay area. But they’re not elite. And they won’t be elite until Alex Smith can throw for more yards than Frank Gore can run. Smith also threw an interception with under two minutes left in the third quarter when the 49ers were up 15-13. You can't have that.
Fun Fact- The 49ers are only two wins (count ‘em, TWO) away from matching Seattle’s seven wins last season.In case you forgot, Seattle went through to the playoffs. Next week- San Francisco has a bye in Week 7. The Seahawks will be hungry for a win in Cleveland to draw closer to the NFC West leaders. A loss would make it very, very tough to come back and claim the division. Final Thought- Last week I said to look out for the AFC South to eventually take out the crown as the weakest division in football. Sure enough, the lovely folk at ESPN have now confirmed it. Huzzah! To those of you who moped and moaned about how it’s “not fair that the NFC West can put a team through to the playoffs,” I say, take your harsh words to those AFC gits!
What are your thoughts on the 49ers? Do they deserve to be the Team of the Week yet again?