Early in the game, the Dolphins used spread formations to force the 49ers to drop Aldon Smith back into coverage. But it was only a matter of time before Smith took advantage of rookie left tackle Jonathan Martin.
Smith used a bull-rush technique to knock Martin backward, sacking Ryan Tannehill at the beginning of the second quarter. That gave Smith 18.5 sacks this season, which puts him ahead of every 49er in history for sacks in one season. Going into today’s game Smith was tied with Fred Dean in that category — Dean had 17.5 sacks in 1983.
Halftime just started as I’m writing this, and that was one weird first half. The Candlestick Park crowd — extremely boisterous when the Dolphins have possessed the ball — got pretty frustrated when the 49ers’ last drive bogged down with a sack of Colin Kaepernick, a loss of two yards on a run by LaMichael James (who has 12 yards on three carries and one catch for 15 yards), and an errant pass over the head of Michael Crabtree that almost drilled one of the kids getting set to take the field for the halftime show.
The 49ers lead 6-3, and the snark level in the press box and on Twitter couldn’t be higher. Media people are openly rooting for the 49ers to fail, and laughing whenever Kaepernick throws a short pass with less-than-optimal touch (translation: 85 mph). When the 49ers made the switch to Kaepernick from Alex Smith, they needed to blow out every team (besides the Patriots, I guess) the rest of the way for this thing to be deemed successful by those who cover — and in many cases, despise — Jim Harbaugh.
We’ll see if the offense can do a little better than 0-for-4 on third downs in the second half, as well as the number of sacks Aldon ends up with. As we stand, the people who predicted Smith would get shut out today have no chance of winning a large pizza from Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria.