Play-by-play recap of the Broncos disappointing 20-14 loss to 49ers

SANTA CLARA, CA - DECEMBER 09: Von Miller #58 of the Denver Broncos warms up prior to their game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on December 9, 2018 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Robert Reiners/Getty Images)

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — The Broncos dropped an ugly one to the San Francisco 49ers, 20-14, on Sunday.

With the loss to the now 3-11 49ers, the Broncos drop to 6-7 on the season and are on the very outside looking in of the AFC playoffs.

After getting shut out in the first half, the Broncos had poor coaching and poor play execution throughout the game, even as they attempted to rally in the second half.

The Broncos wouldn’t find the endzone until the third quarter.

Here’s how the game went down.

First quarter

The Broncos won the coin toss and elected to defer giving the 49ers the ball first to open up the game.

On their opening drive, the 49ers made their way into the red zone with a few first downs by Nick Mullens and a huge 31 yard gain by George Kittle to the Broncos 22 yard line.

The 49ers score first with a field goal to make it 3-0.

Thing did not start as hot for the Broncos offense as they came out with a 3 and out play on their first drive of the game.

After a few more punts from both teams, Kittle beat the Broncos defense again as he went 52 yards down the field and into the red zone to end the first quarter.

Second quarter

Two running plays would set up third and two at the Broncos four yard line. Mullens was sacked by Bradley Chubb to force the field goal and put the 49ers up by six.

Kittle continued to run all over the Broncos defense in the second quarter with an 85-yard touchdown to increase the 49ers lead to 13-0.

With 9:47 left in the second quarter, Kittle has 179 yards, which is the most receiving yards ever by a tight end against the Broncos.

Meanwhile, the Broncos offense only has 39 yards total.

The Broncos offense continued to struggle in the second quarter as drives continued to end in punts and penalties.

The defense got sloppy with a little over a minute to go as they gave the 49ers which got them to midfield with 42 seconds to go. Kittle got a big catch to get the Broncos into field goal range.

And, a few more penalties later, the 49ers capped the drive off with a touchdown with eight seconds left.

Kitte finished the first half with 7 catches for 210 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile the Broncos offense finished with 65 yards for the half.

Third quarter

Things didn’t change much to open the second half as Denver opened with yet another three and out.

But then the Broncos offense finally showed some signs of life midway through the third quarter.

Following a fourth down conversion by Andy Janovich to put the Broncos at the 30 yard line, Case Keenum found Tim Patrick for 19 yards and the first down to finally put the Broncos in the red zone.

The play was capped off with a 3-yard touchdown run by Phillip Lindsay.

The Broncos are finally on the board to make it 20-7.

Fourth quarter

The Broncos attempted to convert another fourth down by going for it on fourth-and-3 at their own 44-yard line. Keenum handed it off to Lindsay who came up just a yard short of the first down.

The 49ers got the turnover on downs and excellent field position by starting at the Broncos’ 46 yard line. But they couldn’t capitalize on it as Darian Stewart got the interception off the hands of Trent Taylor giving the Broncos the ball back at the 44-yard line.

It was his second interception of the year.

Following the interception, Royce Freeman came out with a 23-yard run to put the Broncos at the 29-yard line. But the drive would stall as the Broncos went for it on fourth-and-3 as Lindsay was tackled and came up two yards short.

Once again, the Broncos turned it over on downs with about eight minutes remaining. The Broncos got lucky as the 49ers went three and out on their drive and a short punt that gave the Broncos the ball at the 30-yard line.

The 49ers forced the Broncos to go for it on fourth-and-7 and Keenum found Patrick for 9-yards and the first down.

The Broncos had to go for it again on fourth down and converted to set up first and goal with about four minutes left in the game. Keenum missed Sutton on second and third downs.

Denver was finally able to get it in on fourth down as Keenum found DaeSean Hamilton to make it 20-14 and a one score game with less than four minutes left.

Following a failed challenge call by the Broncos, Denver lost one of their two remaining timeouts. And the defense let them convert for 31 yards after a false start penalty to give the 49ers a fresh set of downs.

And it was another third down conversion at the two-minute warning as the 49ers made it to the Broncos’ 33 yard line as Denver has no timeouts remaining.

That was all the 49ers needed to do as they took a knee and handed the Broncos their seventh loss of the season.

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