Carlos Hyde suffered a hip injury in the first quarter Thursday and was on the sidelined for most of the period, but the 49ers running back returned later to score two gritty, fourth-down touchdowns.
Hyde’s early absence had a big impact later in the opening quarter when one of his backups, Raheem Mostert, fumbled during a promising 49ers drive and the Rams took over at their own 39-yard line. Los Angeles converted the turnover into a field goal.
That was a theme in the first half: When Brian Hoyer was intercepted on the first snap of the game, the Rams scored on a short Todd Gurley touchdown run on the next play.
Hyde has run well early in games and that continued Thursday. He gained 20 yards on his second carry but also took a big hit from the Rams safeties at the end of the run. He carried for three yards on the next play but yielded to Matt Brieda and Mostert for most of the first quarter.
Hyde returned in the second quarter after receiving treatment on the sideline and didn’t seem slowed by the injury. He gained 55 yards after sustaining the injury and scored his first touchdown of the season in the third quarter.
After gaining a first down at the Los Angeles 6-yard line, Hyde got three consecutive carries before finally punching in the ball on fourth down from the 1-yard line. He scored again from one yard out – and again on fourth down – in the fourth quarter.
“That is just the fight in me. I refuse to go down,” Hyde said. “I just keep fighting, that is how I play. I knew that it was going to be tough coming into this game. I didn’t expect anything less from the Rams. They always play us tough, especially in the run game. I knew that it would take the extra effort to get one or two yards extra to move the chains.”
He finished with 84 yards on 25 carries.
Three 49ers concussed – Thurday’s game was the first time Jaquiski Tartt and Jimmie Ward started a game at safety since they were seniors at Davidson High School in Mobile, Ala.
Tartt, however, was taken off the field in the third quarter after making a head-first tackle, one of three 49ers to leave with suspected concussions. The others were fullback Kyle Juszczyk and linebacker Brock Coyle. Juszczyk also suffered a neck injury and was wearing a neck brace afterward.
Defensive end Tank Carradine left the game with a right ankle injury and was wearing an orthopedic boot after the game.
Tartt had been declared questionable for the contest after suffering a neck injury against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. Rookie Lorenzo Jerome filled in at strong safety for the last quarter and a half.
“It was tough,” Ward said of losing Tartt. “But good thing we have two rookie safeties that always stay in the film room, understand their notes. Jerome – he was ready to go. He did a great job when he came out there.”
Grandpa’s allegiance – Former 49ers executive John McVay chuckled this week when his grandson, Rams head coach Sean McVay, said he supposed his grandfather would be cheering for Los Angeles on Thursday but wasn’t sure.
The elder McVay, after all, spent 20 seasons with the 49ers and was part of all five championships.
“It’s hard to root for two teams at the same time,” John McVay said by phone. He said he figures he’ll be in the same awkward position for many years to come.
“This game is always evolving, and you need good, young coaches to keep up,” he said. “These teams have two of the best young minds in the game right now.”
McVay did not attend Thursday’s game because there would be little time to visit with his grandson before the Rams flew back to Southern California. He said he plans on attending several games in Los Angeles.
Et cetera – Brian Hoyer’s nine-yard touchdown run in the first quarter was his first since Oct. 18, 2009, when he was a rookie and Tom Brady’s apprentice with the New England Patriots.
▪ Defensive end Elvis Dumervil seemed to record his 100th career sack in the first quarter when he brought down Jared Goff on third down. The play, however, was wiped out by a holding call against cornerback Dontae Johnson and the Rams would go on to an eight-play touchdown drive.
▪ Linebacker Reuben Foster was on the sideline in sweat pants but without a walking boot on his injured right ankle, a sign that he is recovering well from the injury. The 49ers will have 10 days off before their next game at Arizona on Oct. 1.