Originally posted on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 10/31/12
Monday night’s NFC west divisional showdown saw the San Francisco 49ers go into the University of Phoenix Stadium and completely dismantle the Arizona Cardinals 24-3. The 49ers, on their part, controlled the entire aspect of the game on both offense and defense. They looked as crisp and precise as they have all year, and they dictated the action on nearly every down. The Cardinals on the other hand, appeared to be in complete disarray, reaching for straws and pinning their execution on big plays only. For the 49ers it was a healthy step in the right direction, now at 6-2 on the season they are becoming more aware of the playing style that allows them to be successful. The Cardinals, after winning their first four games, have now dropped their last four games, and are in serious jeopardy of losing grasp on their season. The 49ers offense was the epitome of efficiency on Monday night, rushing 29 times for 113 yards and passing 19 times for 232 yards. Quarterback Alex Smith was as good as he has ever looked, completing 18 of his 19 passes and throwing for three touchdowns, with zero interceptions. The only drawback to his performance was the four sacks that he endured. And that is really attributed to the Cardinals relentless and talented defensive line. Smith was again afforded the luxury of a great game due in large part to the rushing expertise of running back Frank Gore. Though Gore failed to score a touch down in the game, he was always the focus of the Cardinals defense, and it allowed Smith to pick and choose his receivers at will. Gore ended the night carrying the ball 16 times for 55 yards. His counterpart and back up running back Kendall Hunter also made a very important contribution to the offensive scheme; he ran the ball ten times for 43 yards. The 49ers touchdowns were handled by the wide receivers in the week eight match up. With two going in the direction of Michael Crabtree, who caught five passes for 72 yards to go with his two scores. The other touchdown went to legendary wide receiver Randy Moss. It was his 156th touchdown of his career, and it ties him for fourth on the all time touchdown list. Unfortunately, the Cardinals did not attempt to employ the same well-rounded game plan that the 49ers used. As predicted here on 49ers101, the Cardinals went to the air too often to legitimately force the 49ers into any state of confusion. The Cardinals only attempted nine rushing plays on the entire night, as opposed to 52 pass attempts. That will not, as any coach will tell you, win ball games. When teams do not employ a rushing attack it makes them one dimensional, and an easy target to control. Even if the running game is terrible, or if the defensive line is too strong, they still have to keep going to the well with it. Doing so keeps defenses from becoming complacent on stopping one avenue of offense. And that is basically what the 49ers secondary did all night, they sat back and waited on balls to be thrown their way. Case in point, the 49ers secondary and linebackers deflected 13 of the passes thrown in their direction to go with their one interception. Again, it was predicted here at 49ers101, that the 49ers secondary was going to be the determining factor in this game, and that they would very busy individuals with the amount of passes thrown and the number of targets the Cardinals would seek out. The Cardinals made pass completions to nine different receivers again, with Andre Roberts, Larry Fitzgerald, and Michael Floyd getting the bulk of the looks. Though none of them scored a touchdown or went over 100 yards. As a matter of fact, there was only one drive that gave any of the receivers a chance at a scoring touchdown. And that was late in the fourth quarter when the game was well out of reach. Next week the 49ers have a much needed bye week to nurse some injuries and prepare for the second half push toward the playoffs. Their next opponent will be another division rival, the St. Louis Rams, in week ten.  Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101. var switchTo5x=true; stLight.options({publisher:''});
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Rams WR Stedman Bailey in hospital after being shot in head

Furious Brad Stevens blasts Celtics after lackluster game

Did Bryce Harper deserve the MVP?

Duke 5-star commit posts moving message after successful surgery

Ex-LSU commit still supports Les Miles

Report: Ray Lewis gave Bills pregame pep talk


Report: Marshawn Lynch out a few weeks to recover

Peyton Manning to miss at least two more weeks

Notre Dame DT: Committee 'spit in our faces' with ranking

LaRon Landry suspended indefinitely by NFL

Don’t blame Mike Pettine for benching Johnny Manziel. Blame Johnny.

Danny Ainge: Celtics’ Marcus Smart has shown ‘propensity to get injured’

Nick Young seems to take shot at Kobe Bryant

WATCH: College basketball player makes 3-pointer while wobbly from concussion

The five most overrated teams in the Week 13 coaches' poll

Clemson WR calls South Carolina fans 'rude'

Jonathan Lucroy trade market bolstered by weak catching market

Michigan State lists two starting QBs on depth chart

10 storylines for Week 13 of the college football season

LISTEN: Browns fan cries on radio while ripping Johnny Manziel

Texas A&M QB Kyle Allen says he was injured vs. Alabama

Report: Maple Leafs are no longer the NHL’s most valuable franchise

Ranking the 10 best games of 2015 college football rivalry week

Did a Chipotle employee convince Danny Ainge to trade for Isaiah Thomas?

Bud Black joins Angels organization as special assistant to GM

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The five most overrated teams in the Week 13 coaches' poll

10 storylines for Week 13 of the college football season

Ranking the 10 best games of 2015 college football rivalry week

Examining the Mavericks' hot start

Johnny Bench(ed): Manziel demoted to third string

Mike Trout, four years in

Tom Brady on ‘Rex Ryan!’ line call: It’s ‘in the playbook’

Five NFL teams trending downward

Not so fast, USC: Eagles Chip Kelly buys Philly-area home

The five best hockey fights from Week 7

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker