|Giants S Antrel Rolle, left, celebrates with cornerback Prince Amukamara (20) after a third-quarter interception. (AP Images)|
New business, same result.
The defending Super Bowl champion Giants (4-2) went into Candlestick Park, dominated in nearly every facet of the game and left with a 26-3 win. After going two weeks without allowing a touchdown, the script was flipped on the 49ers, who fell to 4-2 and looked nothing like the team that beat the other two New York teams by a combined score of 79-3 over the past two weeks.
“The plan wasn't the best plan and we'll work to make a good one this week,” Harbaugh said. “It wasn't a great day for any of us.”
Except the Giants, of course.
When the game turned: On the 49ers' first offensive play in the second quarter, QB Alex Smith was picked off by CB Prince Amukamara, which gave the Giants the ball at the San Francisco 33-yard line. Seven plays later, Manning hit WR Victor Cruz for a 6-yard TD to give the Giants the only points they'd need. Before the INT, the 49ers piled up seven first downs, but registered only seven more the rest of the game.
Highlight moments: A pair of INTs from Giants S Antrel Rolle highlighted a game lacking big-time plays. … Giants WR Domenik Hixon came up with an impressive catch with 1:05 left in the first half. He dove for a pass and was able to keep his hand between the ball in the turf. The catch was challenged by the replay assistant, but upheld for a gain of 14 yards. … 49ers CB Tarell Brown made a nice play coming off the left edge to block a 40-yard FG attempt by Giants K Lawrence Tynes.
- Giants RB Ahmad Bradshaw – 27 carries, 116 yards, 1 TD
- Giants S Antrel Rolle – 2 INTs, 44 return yards
- Giants KR David Wilson – 2 returns, 93 yards, long of 66
What they said about New York's lopsided win:
- Giants WR Victor Cruz: “The statement we made was that we are here to stay, and that we put together some good drives and we have a very good offense.”
- Giants LB Mathias Kiwanuka: “In terms of being out there on the field, watching the replays and having things come together, it was definitely a solid performance.”
- 49ers CB Carlos Rogers: “Coaches always let us know that we're not the kings of the NFL, the Giants are. They won a title last year and they're still that team to beat until somebody wins the Super Bowl.”
- 49ers QB Alex Smith: “We, uncharacteristically, turned the ball over. Any time you turn the ball over like that, it's tough to win.”
Numbers you should know: Giants coach Tom Coughlin moved ahead of Bill Parcells (77-49-1) for sole possession of second place on the Giants all-time regular season win list (78-56-0). … The 49ers' 22-game streak of not allowing a 100-yard rusher at home ended with Bradshaw's 116 yards. … It was the most lopsided loss for Harbaugh as a coach since Stanford's 41-17 loss to Arizona State in 2008. … Smith threw 3 INTs for the seventh time in his career and first since a 27-13 loss to Philadelphia in 2009.
Rogers, Cruz put rivalry to bed: 49ers CB Carlos Rogers and Giants WR Victor Cruz cleared the air in regards to their perceived feud which came as a result of Rogers' imitating Cruz's salsa dance last season.
“We talked about it a little bit. He is a standup guy, he came up to me and he understood why I do the salsa and what it means to me,” Cruz said. “He asked me if I got the message earlier in the week and I said “Yeah.” I told him he was a real good dude for that and we went about our way. It is always good to have a competitive game against a real good player on the other side.”
Bradshaw puzzled by Jacobs' inactivity: 49ers RB Brandon Jacobs' former running mate, Ahmad Bradshaw had a message for the 49ers coaching staff when it comes to Jacobs, who was healthy, but inactive for the third straight week.
“I don't know what their coaching staff is thinking or what they expect from Brandon, but I think they're losing a lot not using him,” Bradshaw said.
Injury update: Giants LB Jacquian Williams left the game with a calf injury… 49ers LT Joe Staley left the game with a concussion. His status for Thursday's game against Seattle is unknown.
Going forward: Giants – New York returns home for the first of two games against division rival Washington, which beat the Vikings 38-26 on Sunday. The Redskins swept the season series last season, including a 28-14 win at the Meadowlands. 49ers – San Francisco won't have any time to sulk over the defeat with a home game on Thursday against Seattle. It'll be the first divisional game for the team this year and figures to be another tough test as the Seahawks are coming off a 24-23 win against New England.