San Francisco 49ers

Report card: 49ers torn apart in Atlanta

Atlanta Falcons strong safety Keanu Neal tackles 49ers wide receiver Jeremy Kerley during the second half on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016, in Atlanta.
Atlanta Falcons strong safety Keanu Neal tackles 49ers wide receiver Jeremy Kerley during the second half on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016, in Atlanta. The Associated Press

Report card

Offense: Injuries have taken a big bite out of the 49ers’ passing attack, with receiver Quinton Patton and tight end Blake Bell leaving Sunday’s contest in the first half. Still, Colin Kaepernick staved off an appearance by Christian Ponder by passing for 183 yards and two touchdowns while throwing to a skeleton crew of receivers. Grade: C+

Defense: Injuries, bad tackling, a lack of talent – the 49ers have been on course to set a team record in rushing yards allowed since the start of the season. That they set the record early in the third quarter with two games remaining underscores just how terrible this year’s unit is. Grade: F

Special teams: The 49ers gave up a 47-yard return on their first punt, setting the stage for a sloppy day of returns. Kicker Phil Dawson even missed an extra point, something he’d done only three times in the past 10 years. Grade: D+

Overall: The first quarter was as bad as it’s been for the 49ers this season, which is saying something considering their recent losses to the lousy Bears and Jets. They showed a faint spark from that point forward, but that may have been due to the Falcons shifting into cruise control as much as anything else. Grade: D-

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