Kyle Allen

Richard Sherman got (fake?) motivation from Dante Pettis for 49ers' win

Richard Sherman got (fake?) motivation from Dante Pettis for 49ers' win

Richard Sherman, like a lot of great athletes, looks for and finds motivation in things both real and perceived.

You remember #HandshakeGate with Baker Mayfield, right?

The veteran 49ers cornerback plays with a chip on his shoulder. He wants to be doubted and relishes in sticking it to those who choose to come at him.

Teammate Dante Pettis, no doubt, is aware of that. The second-year wide receiver gave Sherman a little bulletin board material before the 49ers' 51-13 curb-stomping of the Panthers in Week 8. But whether that motivation was on the level, still is yet to be determined.

“I guess [Pettis is] friends” with [Kyle] Allen, Sherman said, via The San Francisco Chronicle's Eric Branch. “He’s like, ‘Hey, man, his plan is just to go at you.’ It’s like you’ve got to understand: I’m not new to this. I’m true to this. And my 15 minutes started an hour ago.”

But ... was Pettis just trying to gas Sherman up?

“No, I’m not completely sure,” Sherman said when asked if he knew it was true. “He knows how I am, too. So he could have not known this kid at all and just said that ... I don’t know if he said it, but Pettis said he said it, so it pissed me off.”

Because it's Kyle Allen and not Mayfield, there won't be some Zapruder-film deep dive into whether or not Allen actually planned to target Sherman at Levi's Stadium.

[RELATED: Bosa has no time for Irvin's trash talk after 49ers' rout]

With the thrashing of the Panthers, the 49ers moved to 7-0 ahead of their Thursday night NFC West tilt with the Cardinals.

Let's see if another teammate tries to give Sherman some faux motivation to make Kyler Murray's life miserable in Week 9.

Watch Nick Bosa intercept Kyle Allen's pass in 49ers' rout of Panthers

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USATSI

Watch Nick Bosa intercept Kyle Allen's pass in 49ers' rout of Panthers

Nick Bosa just keeps on wrecking opposing offenses.

The 49ers' rookie defensive end terrorized the Carolina Panthers all day in Sunday's game at Levi's Stadium, notching three first-half sacks. The Ohio State product then put the finishing touches on another masterful performance in the third quarter when he picked off Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen's pass and returned it 46 yards to the Carolina 9.

Can you say NFL Defensive Player of the Year?

Bosa has been a revelation in his first pro season, combining with DeForest Buckner, Arik Armstead and Dee Ford to create a fearsome pass rush that has helped lead the 49ers to a 6-0 start. 

[RELATED: Instant impact: Sanders scores TD on first 49ers possession]

The 49ers turned Bosa's pick into three points, giving them a 44-13 lead early in the fourth quarter and putting them well on their way to 7-0.

Panthers to start Kyle Allen at QB, not Cam Newton, vs. 49ers in Week 8

Panthers to start Kyle Allen at QB, not Cam Newton, vs. 49ers in Week 8

The 6-0 49ers have had the NFL's easiest schedule to date, with their six opponents combining for an 11-28 record.

Among those six teams that have fallen on the sword of Kyle Shanahan's club, the 49ers have faced quarterbacks Jameis Winston, Andy Dalton, Mason Rudolph, Baker Mayfield, Jared Goff and Case Keenum. Of those six quarterbacks, only Mayfield and Goff have long-term futures in the NFL. Winston is on the fast track out of Tampa Bay, Dalton is on his last leg in Cincinnati, Rudolph is an unproven commodity and Keenum is ... well, Keenum.

The 49ers' opposing quarterback gauntlet won't get much tougher in Week 8 when the Carolina Panthers come to Levi's Stadium.

Cam Newton has been out since Week 2 with a foot injury. Kyle Allen has led the Panthers to four straight wins, and even though Newton has been on the mend, head coach Ron Rivera announced Monday that Allen will start Sunday against the Niners while Newton "works with the trainers."

The Texas A&M product has thrown for 901 yards and seven touchdowns so far this season, leading the Panthers to wins over the Texans, Jaguars, Buccaneers and Cardinals in that span. Allen has played well in Newton's absence, not turning the ball over and letting Carolina's run game, spearheaded by Christian McCaffrey, inflict damage on their opponents.

[RELATED: 49ers, Raiders stand pat in NFL power rankings]

The 49ers' defensive line has terrorized the opposition so far this season. Through six games, the 49ers are holding opponents to 10.7 points and 223.5 yards per game, and it's unlikely they'll allow McCaffrey to beat them. 

If the Panthers plan to leave the Bay Area with a win, it'll be up to Allen's right shoulder and his line's ability to keep Nick Bosa, DeForest Buckner and Co. off his back. 

Easier said than done.