Jimmy G, Bosa describe optimism after 'dogfight' with Rams originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
And on Monday night, after a putrid outing against the Denver Broncos the week prior, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and his San Francisco teammates wanted nothing more than to walk away with a victory and a .500 record.
Two offensive touchdowns, seven sacks and one Talanoa Hufanga pick six later, and the 49ers did just that, securing a 24-9 win over the Rams in front of a roaring Levi's Stadium crowd.
The team also secured plenty of momentum moving forward after holding the defending Super Bowl champions to just three field goals on the night as they look to return to the NFL playoffs themselves.
"All of [the games moving forward] are big, especially after last week," Garoppolo said after the win. "It's always nice to beat these guys, division game.
"I don't know -- every time we play the Rams it's a dogfight. It always is and it always usually comes down to the last couple minutes, and I think Huf made a huge play for us at the end there to kind of seal it for us."
The 49ers now have defeated the Rams in their last seven regular-season matchups (we won't mention a certain playoff game). And last season, the two meetings between the teams both came at pivotal moments for the 49ers.
Entering Week 10 of the 2021 NFL season, San Francisco owned a 3-5 record and the team was struggling to find an identity after losing four of their previous five games. Enter Los Angeles. The 49ers beat the Rams 31-10 and then used that momentum to turn the season around.
By Week 18, the 49ers were fighting for a spot in the postseason and only the Rams were standing in their way. A miraculous 27-24 win at SoFi Stadium in overtime pushed San Francisco into the playoffs, though Los Angeles put a stop to the team's Super Bowl hopes just a couple of weeks later.
"[It gives us] a lot of momentum," Bosa said after the game, in which he registered a game-high five quarterback hits along with two sacks. "We really wanted this one, and we're going on an away trip for a couple weeks.
"So it would have been a lot tougher to start that away trip and stay in West Virginia for a week if we weren't 2-2."
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Monday night might not have been quite the dogfight Garoppolo or the rest of the 49ers were expecting after a true team effort on both sides of the ball.
But the two teams will play each other again later this month in Los Angeles, and there's no telling what kind of shape San Francisco's season will be in then.
After their Week 4 win, however, it's clear there's plenty of optimism from the players moving forward -- and for good reason.