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By the numbers: How the 49ers’ Week 5 loss was historically odd

© Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports


Statistically speaking, the 49ers put together one of their most dominant performances in recent history in Sunday’s game— and lost, 28-18, to the visiting Arizona Cardinals.

Glance at the stat sheet, and you’d have thought the 49ers trounced the formerly winless Cardinals. San Francisco gained 33 first downs to Arizona’s 10. The 49ers converted 10 of 17 third-down opportunities into first downs. Arizona converted just two of its 12. The 49ers more-than-doubled the Cardinals’ yardage — 447 to 220. San Francisco’s time of possession was 40:12, also more-than-doubling Arizona’s 19:48.

But the most telling statistic— focused upon during Kyle Shanahan’s postgame team speech and press conference— was the turnover disparity. The 49ers committed five turnovers to Arizona’s zero. They have committed 11 turnovers to their opponents’ three this season. The only game that they won the turnover battle came in Week 2 against Detroit — their only win of the season.

Here are some more statistics that illustrate the bizarre nature of San Francisco’s Week 5 defeat.

  • The 49ers ran a franchise-record 92 plays, which is the most by any NFL team since Week 9 of the 2013 season.
  • San Francisco’s 92 plays are the team’s most in a losing effort since 1996.
  • The 49ers’ 33 first downs are their most since collecting 36 in Week 7 of the 1998 season. The second-most first downs produced in the Shanahan era is 26, which happened twice, the most recent coming in Week 3 at Kansas City.
  • The 49ers possessed the ball for 40:12, their most since Week 4 of the 2013 season.
  • The 49ers had not committed more than five turnovers since Week 13 of the 2007 season. The last time they turned the ball over five times came in Week 2 of the 2013 season.
  • San Francisco’s 447 yards, 10 third-down conversions, and 100 percent red-zone efficiency are the team’s best marks of the 2018 season.
 

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