Niners get back to basics against Rams

Happy Friday, Broncos fans! The Niners (2-2) got back to what they do best on Thursday night in a 35-11 pummeling of the host Rams (1-3).

San Francisco pounded out 218 yards and three touchdowns on the ground, and Colin Kaepernick bounced back following two rough games with an efficient performance that included two touchdown passes.

The Niners defense stifled the Rams offense, holding them to just 188 total yards, sacking Sam Bradford five times and turning him over twice.

To make matters worse for St. Louis, rookie starting safety T.J. McDonald fractured his leg and figures to be out indefinitely, perhaps for the season.

Generally a lopsided snoozefest, the game did feature one particularly interesting moment, as San Francisco fair caught a punt before halftime to set up a 71-yard free kick FG attempt by Phil Dawson, who missed badly.

Ben StockwellSam Monson, and Chris Burke analyze the game, which Deadspin recaps in GIFtastic fashion.

Broncos News

Videos: NFL Films previews Sunday's game; DRC and Julius Thomas discuss their points of focus.

From Jeff Legwold's report, it doesn't quite sound like Champ Bailey is ready to make his season debut this week.

Jack Del Rio likes the speed and physicality shown by Kayvon Webster, and he sees a lot of Derek Wolfe in Malik Jackson.

Adam Gase blames his own play call for Monday's late strip-sack of Peyton Manning by former friend Jason Hunter, perhaps to cover for Chris Clark.

Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie says it's especially tough to keep up with DeSean Jackson's speed when the ball is in the air, and he admits he's been looking forward to facing his old team.

With his three sacks through three games, Robert Ayers leads the team and has already matched the single-season career high he'd previously set in 2011.

Denver's franchise record-tying 14 consecutive regular season wins have each come by at least seven points, by an average score of 34-18.

Broncos Analysis

Matt Bowen breaks down Peyton Manning's beautifully schemed play-action touchdown pass to Eric Decker from Monday night.

Mark Kiszla says the absence of Von Miller has forced the rest of Denver's defense to step up their game.

Eagles

It continues to look like rookie safety Earl Wolff will make his first NFL start on Sunday, in place of the injured Patrick Chung.

Philly has already been mauled by slot receivers in each of the past two games, which doesn't bode well for their matchup with Wes Welker. They've also struggled with missed tackles over that period.

Most of LeSean McCoy's league-leading rushing yards have come with the Eagles in 11 personnel; more than one-third of Michael Vick's attempts and completions this season have gone to DeSean Jackson.

Alex Henery is just 5-of-7 on FG attempts so far, with his two misses each coming from fortysomething-yards out.

Buffs coach Mike MacIntyre thinks the smaller NFL roster is preventing Chip Kelly from operating his offense as quickly as he did at Oregon.

Marcus Hayes thinks Denver's injuries will help give the Eagles a fighting chance on Sunday, while Bob Brookover thinks Philly's only shot is to win a shootout.

News

An alarming joint study by Va Tech and Wake Forest suggests that head hits endured by youth football players are similar in magnitude to what high school and adult players face, and that these impacts occur more often in practice than in games.

Roger Goodell says the league is considering replacing some preseason games with scrimmages, and possibly even reducing the obnoxious ticket burden for them that's placed on season-ticket holders.

Matt Cassel will start at QB for the Vikings, as Christian Ponder has a fractured rib that's dangerously close to his heart.

Bucs QB Josh Freeman says he'd of course welcome a trade after having been stripped of his starting job by Greg Schiano. Doug Farrar says that part of what doomed Freeman in Tampa Bay is Schiano's antiquated offense, and he doesn't see Mike Glennon faring a whole lot better within it.

Aaron Hernandez co-defendant Carlos Ortiz (and totally reliable witness) has changed his story about the murder of Odin Lloyd, now claiming that only Hernandez exited the car when Lloyd was shot to death. Ortiz's first version claimed that Ernest Wallace had joined Hernandez in leaving the vehicle.

Analysis

Mike Tanier and John Clayton preview Week 4's matchups.

As much as things have changed in San Diego, Jim Trotter still sees a Chargers team that can't get it done in the clutch.

Josh Katzowitz lists the best players still available in free agency.

Maths

As Jason Lisk points out, AFC teams are 11-3 against NFC squads, including a stunning seven wins out of ten tries as an underdog.

Chase Stuart looks back at moronic decisions not to go for two points, including Tom Coughlin's Week 2 call against the Broncos.

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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