The bye week during Wildcard Weekend did wonders for the 49ers who beat the Vikings 27-10 in their NFC Divisional Round match-up. With a 13-3 record in the regular season, the 49ers won the NFC West for the first time since 2012 and earned the top seed in the NFC. They’ll now advance to the NFC Championship where they’ll host the winner of the Seahawks and Packers game.
San Francisco, which had their regular season bye in Week 4, used the time off during the first round of the playoffs to get some of their key defensive players healthy including cornerback Richard Sherman and defensive end Dee Ford. Sherman had a key interception that cut a Vikings drive short and Ford finished with one sack.
Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo threw for just 131 yards, one touchdown and one interception. But it was the 49ers rushing attack that really controlled the tempo and helped the NFC’s number one seed move the chains. Collectively the 49ers ran for 186 yards and were led by Tevin Coleman who picked up 105 yards on 22 carries and also scored twice, with both runs coming from inside the five yard line.
In the passing attack, San Francisco was led by rookie Deebo Samue who caught three passes for 42 yards. None of the 49ers pass catchers had more than three receptions. Tight end George Kittle averaged six catches and 75 yards per game during the regular season, finished with just three catches for 16 yards.
On Defense and Special Teams, the 49ers forced two turnovers, sacked Kirk Cousins six times for a loss of 46 yards. Cousins completed 21-of-29 attempts for 172 yards , one touchdown and one interception. The 49ers bottled up superstar running back Dalvin Cook, holding him to just 18 yards.
This was the sixth meeting between San Francisco and Minnesota in the playoffs with the 49ers now having a 5-1 advantage. As a franchise the 49ers now have 31 post-season victories, which trails only the Packers (34), Cowboys (35), Steelers (36) and Patriots (37).