Three things to know from 49ers' 18-15 loss to Cardinals in OT

Three things to know from 49ers' 18-15 loss to Cardinals in OT

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Three things you need to know about the 49ers’ 18-15 loss to the Arizona Cardinals in Week 4 on Sunday:

1. The passing game is substandard
Quarterback Brian Hoyer and Co. are just not cutting it.

Coach Kyle Shanahan is known as an offensive guru, but the 49ers have been held without a touchdown in three of their four games. Hoyer was not the team’s only offensive player who had a bad game, but his poor performance was the most glaring.

Hoyer completed 24 of 49 pass attempts for 234 yards with an interception. He was also sacked three times. Hoyer was off-target on many of his throws. On others, it appeared he was not on the same page with his wide receivers.

Also, wide receiver Aldrick Robinson and tight end George Kittle had crucial dropped passes.

“You got to throw and catch better,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said. “To me, it’s as simple as that. At least it was in this game from what I saw. When guys are open and you have the time, you have to hit them. And when he does hit you, you have to catch it. I know nobody’s perfect, but there was way too much of that between both positions today.”

2. Cannot close the deal
The 49ers lost their third consecutive game to an NFC West team, and it should come as absolutely no consolation that the 49ers have lost to Seattle, the Los Angeles Rams and Arizona by a combined eight points.

This is a team that does not know how to win. At this stage, they are good enough to just barely lose.

The 49ers had a chance to close the deal in overtime when the offense had a first-and-goal at the Arizona 8-yard line. A touchdown would have ended the game. But Carlos Hyde was stopped for a 4-yard loss on first down. He gained 7 yards on second down. On third and goal from the 5, Hoyer threw incomplete.

Robbie Gould kicked his fifth field goal of the game, giving the 49ers a 15-12 lead and leaving the Cardinals with just 2 minutes, 24 seconds to respond. That was more than enough for Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald.

The 49ers had a strong defensive effort throughout, but they could not stop the Cardinals one last time. Palmer and Fitzgerald teamed up for a 19-yard touchdown pass for the winning points with :32 remaining in overtime.

For the third game in a row, the 49ers have not been able to come up with the big play at the right time. The Cardinals’ veteran offensive playmakers took full advantage of their final chance.

3. No time to sulk
There were more than a few choice words being uttered as the 49ers came off the field and entered their locker room following Sunday’s game.

The defense showed a lot of signs of rounding into a strong unit. But the offense is bound to be at the top of general manager John Lynch’s list to experience an infusion of talent next offseason.

Shanahan and Lynch are under six-year contracts. Each player knows if he does not work hard and improve throughout this season, he will probably not be back next season.

Veteran linebacker NaVorro Bowman said he emphasized the point to his younger teammates that the team has to continue to work hard not let the frustration of the past three games carry over to next week’s preparation for the game against the Indianapolis Colts.

“It’s human nature. I’ve seen it, guys lose a couple of games and can’t get it turned around,” Bowman said. “I just want to stress that we have to stay together as a team and remember the work we put in together. We’ll get it turned around.”

Terrell Owens selects former 49ers coach as his Hall of Fame presenter


Terrell Owens selects former 49ers coach as his Hall of Fame presenter

Terrell Owens has selected former 49ers special teams and wide receivers coach George Stewart as his presenter into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

“He knew what to get out of me,” Owens told the Hall of Fame.

“He knows who I am. To know who Terrell Owens is, you have to spend some time with him. . . George Stewart became a father figure to me.”

Owens was elected into the Hall of Fame in February. He will enter the Hall of Fame in a class that also includes wide receiver Randy Moss, linebackers Ray Lewis, Brian Urlacher and Robert Brazile, safety Brian Dawkins, guard Jerry Kramer, and contributor Bobby Beathard.

Owens played special teams under Stewart’s direction as a rookie after coming to the 49ers in 1996.

From 2000 to ’02, Stewart worked as the 49ers’ wide receivers coach. Owens was selected to three consecutive All-Pro teams and Pro Bowls during that time. Owens ranks No. 2 all time behind Jerry Rice with 15,934 receiving yards. He is third all-time with 153 receiving touchdowns.

Stewart is set to enter his 30th NFL season as an assistant coach and his second as special-teams coordinator of the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Class of 2018 will be enshrined inside Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton, Ohio, on Saturday, Aug. 4.

Sherman makes his concern over Reid's free-agency status loud and clear


Sherman makes his concern over Reid's free-agency status loud and clear

Safety Eric Reid, who has 69 career starts and one Pro Bowl appearance in his five-year NFL career, remains available on the open market more than a week after the opening of free agency.

Reid has received no reported interest from NFL teams in what has been an unusually soft market for free-agent safeties. But, with Reid, there is another variable that could be playing a factor.

Reid was at the forefront of the social activism that has been a major storyline in the NFL since the beginning of the 2016 season. Reid and former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the playing of the national anthem in protest of racial inequality in America.

Reid has remained outspoken and has taken a knee as a way to “make people uncomfortable about the issues.” Reid has been clear his protest has nothing to do with the flag or the anthem.

“The anthem is just a vehicle to get us to have those conversations,” Reid told NBC Sports Bay Area last season. “It’s the platform we have. It’s the only time we have to get the eyeballs on us to do that. If we just did locker-room talks afterward, nobody would even know. Strategically, this is the only way we thought we could do it.”

Veteran cornerback Richard Sherman, who signed a three-year contract with the 49ers on March 10, had been the Seattle Seahawks’ player representative. He is a vice president of the NFL Players Association. Reid was the 49ers’ union representative.

Sherman said he is keeping a close eye on Reid’s situation.

“We are concerned, because he played at a high level for just about every year that he’s played in this league,” Sherman said on Tuesday. “He’s made enough plays to be signed with a team and to make his money. He deserves his money. Safeties make a certain amount. I would think he’s top-five, top-10 safeties in this league, so he deserves to be paid accordingly.

“So there is concern there, because you would think a player of his caliber and his quality would be picked up by now. I think great teams are still looking and people are still looking for players. I’m praying that he gets picked up. But if he doesn’t, then I think there will be a conversation with the league office and the union on potential league action.”

Kaepernick never got so much as an opportunity to compete for an NFL roster spot during training camp last season. Could Reid, 26, be heading for the same fate?

Reid addressed the issue last week on social media:

“The notion that I can be a great signing for your team for cheap, not because of my skill set but because I’ve protested systemic oppression, is ludicrous. If you think is, then your mindset is part of the problem too.”

The 49ers have not placed a priority on re-signing Reid. The club already has potential starting safeties Jimmie Ward, Jaquiski Tartt and Adrian Colbert under contract for the upcoming season.

Reid, whom the 49ers traded up to select with the No. 18 overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, has 10 career interceptions. He appeared to thrive last season in run support as a safety who played closer to the line of scrimmage.