Smith Almost Perfect in 49ers' Victory Over Cardinals - NBC 7 San Diego

Smith Almost Perfect in 49ers' Victory Over Cardinals

Quarterback throws for three TDs, no picks, in San Francisco's 24-3 decision in Arizona



    Smith Almost Perfect in 49ers' Victory Over Cardinals
    Getty Images
    Niners wide receiver Michael Crabtree scores one of his two touchdowns vs. Arizona Monday night. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

    Before Monday night’s matchup with the San Francisco 49ers, Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt said he expected a tough, physical game.

    “These division games become brawls,” he said.

    Only this time, this NFC West duel was a one-sided beating.

    The 49ers used three touchdown passes from Alex Smith – two to Michael Crabtree and one to Randy Moss – to beat the Cardinals 24-3 and improve to 6-2 while opening up a two-game lead in the division going into their bye week.

    Arizona, meanwhile, lost for the fourth straight time after beginning the season 4-0.

    Smith, coming off a pair of rough performances against the Giants and Seahawks in which he threw a total of four interceptions, was back to his old, efficient self, completing 18-of-19 throws for 232 yards and no interceptions. His only incompletion was a drop.

    Smith connected with Crabtree five times and Mario Manningham four times, but it was his lone completion to Moss – a 47-yard catch-and-run play in the third quarter – that broke Arizona’s back and put the 49ers up 24-0.

    While the Niners were humming efficiently on offense – they also ran for 113 yards --  San Francisco’s defense was dominating.

    For the fourth time in five games San Francisco didn’t allow a touchdown, giving up only a late Jay Feely field goal.

    The Niners stuffed the Cardinals on the ground, allowing just 7 net yards rushing, sacked quarterback John Skelton four times – outside linebacker Aldon Smith got to him twice – and gave up just 258 total yards.

    Though the Cardinals had talked much in the past week about their matchup with the reigning NFC West champs – defensive end Calais Campbell even going so far as to say he hates the 49ers – it was San Francisco that came out from the start ready to prove its point. The Niners took a 17-0 lead at the half and never let Arizona back into the game.

    After defeating Seattle 13-6 last week in a hard-fought NFC West duel, the Niners shut down another division contender with an all-around performance.

    After taking this Sunday off, the Niners return to action Sunday, Nov. 11 against another division foe, the Rams, at Candlestick Park.