SANTA CLARA – The 49ers scored one touchdown on Sunday. And give a big assist to the defense, which set the 49ers up at the St. Louis Rams 35-yard line to start that first-half drive.
The Rams came into the game with the NFL’s 31st-ranked run defense. Yet, Frank Gore managed just 49 yards on 14 rushes.
Quarterback Colin Kaepernick was sacked eight times and lost two fumbles, including the game-losing turnover on a sneak attempt in the closing seconds of the 49ers’ 13-10 loss to the fourth-place team in the NFC West at Levi’s Stadium.
[MAIOCCO: Kaepernick: 'I know I crossed the line']
Gore deflected any criticism of offensive coordinator Greg Roman, saying it is the responsibility of the players to turn things around and salvage the season.
“(We) just got to make our mind up, do what we feel we’re good at and just go do it,” Gore said. “I still think we have a great coordinator. I still believe in our coordinator. He’s been successful since he got here.
“As players, we just got to look at ourselves in the mirror. And whenever he makes a call, we got to go do it. I don’t want to put it on him. It’s also us. We’re out there playing. I feel he put us in good situations. We’re just too up and down.”
Left tackle Joe Staley distributed the blame for the 49ers’ embarrassing loss to everyone.
“We have all the talent in the world and we’re doing some dumb stuff and they took advantage of it,” Staley said. “Penalties, dumb blocks, dumb techniques and dumb schemes. We played like (expletive).”
Coach Jim Harbaugh, whose team falls to 4-4, has to get things turned around quickly if the 49ers are going to return to the NFC playoffs for a fourth consecutive season under his leadership.
“Well, we didn’t have enough good football to win the game,” Harbaugh said. “Now, we got to suck it up. That’s a tough loss.
“We have to play good football in order to win in this league, there’s no question about it. Today was not good enough to win.”
The 49ers fell to third place in the NFC West behind Arizona (7-1) and Seattle (5-3). Seven teams in the NFC have better records than the 49ers with eight games remaining. And things do not get any easier next week, as the 49ers travel to face the New Orleans Saints.
“We’ve just got to look at ourselves in the mirror and we’re going to try to get to this postseason,” Gore said. “We’ve got to go do it and if we don’t, stop playing around.”