PictureVance McDonald
It was a much needed bye week for the 49ers with several of the players rehabbing injuries. A few players took the opportunity to visit family, their alma maters and/or just get away for some R&R.




Vance McDonald headed to nearby Lake Tahoe for a beautiful change of scenery.  IG vancemcdonald89

Carlos Hyde returned to Ohio State, Urban Meyer tweeted that it was good to have him back @elguapo 


Michael Wilhoite returned to Washburn University and attended practice. @MichaelWilhoite 


Bruce Ellington returned to Moncks Corner, SC @_Elling10


Chris Culliver spent time in the big apple, NYC @Cullyinthehouse


Anquan Boldin stayed in the bay area and even asked his twitter followers if they had suggestions on where to watch the World Series @AnquanBoldin 
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Ian Williams returned home to visit family.
"Enjoyed the much needed bye week by going home to see family! Blessed to have so many amazing people in my life. Can't wait to get back to work tomorrow on finishing this season strong #questforsix"

@IWilliams95

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Bruce Miller returned to Orlando for UCF's homecoming with his lovely lady Leanne Massey. The Knights enjoyed a 34-14 victory over Temple. 

IG brucemiller49

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Eric Reid celebrated an early Halloween with his family. 


@E_Reid35

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Stevie johnson stayed in the Bay and enjoyed some of the traditional fare at Fisherman's Wharf while also staying on top of all of the World Series action. #SFUnite


@StevieJohnson13

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Nick Moody returned to Florida, spent some time with his adorable daughter Elena and ate some pretty tasty BBQ. 

IG nickmoody_

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Kaepernick spent some time at his favorite charity Camp Taylor. They even had an early birthday celebration for him. His actual bday is 11/3. 


IG kaepernick7
IG camp_taylor 

 
 
PicturePeter Aiken/Getty Images North America
It's a fantastic accomplishment to be named special teams player of the week after successfully knocking in five field goals in one game. It's even more impressive that two of those FGs were from longer than 50 yards away (52 & 55). Phil Dawson came through with 15 of the 22 points that the Niners scored in their victory over the Chiefs but what does not go unnoticed is that the Niners have not been able to convert in the red zone. 

Six of the nine offensive drives resulted in points. (One of those drives was the end of game/victory kneel down) Only one of those drives ended with a touchdown to Stevie Johnson. This is not new for the team. David Akers was the leading offensive scorer during his tenure with the Niners. In the 2011 season Akers scored a total of 166 points. 

There's a great Niners Nation article breaking down the 49ers red zone plays vs. Chiefs that shows where missed blocks and the lack of development in plays, including Kaepernick not always seeing open receivers, have stunted the Niners offense at the end of drives. 

Kap, however, is developing through his progressions more this season and adding WR weapons may be a part of it. Crabtree, Boldin, Llyod, Johnson and Patton are a formidable group of weapons not to mention Miller at FB and Davis at TE when he's healthy. 

Obviously a win is a win, but to allow teams to stay in the game with a chance at a winning drive is not the optimum situation. The defense can clearly win games for the team, but relying on them to do so shouldn't be the expectation. 

 
 
Picturestadiumsofprofootball.com
It had all of the trappings of a fabulous opener in the newly minted Levi's Stadium; celebrity attendees, fantastic weather and a full house, but it was not meant to be. 

It was a tale that could have had a happy ending, if only the game could have ended after the 3rd quarterdespite a multitude of penalties and mistakes. At the start of the fourth quarter the 49ers led by 13 points, but it's how you finish, and that's exactly what the Bears did. Three possessions in the final quarter that all led to touchdowns, and a spoiled opener. 

It was a very undisciplined game that included 16 penalties for 118 yards, and four turnovers for the 49ers. The Bears were slightly better with 10 penalties for 58 yards. The glaring difference? Turnovers. Chicago didn't commit any. After the game Harbaugh, Kaepernick and Willis all spoke of the team loss and team responsibility. "We all had fingerprints on it." was the phrase used by both Harbaugh and Willis. 

Boldin and Gore both expressed feelings that the team didn't finish.

"When you have a team team down you definitely have to put your foot on their throat because nobody is going to quit in this league." - Anquan Boldin. 


"We started fast but we laid off, as a team. I just think we have to finish." - Frank Gore 


49ers have a week to work on cleaning things up, they travel to Arizona on Sunday to face the 2-0 Cardinals. 

 
 
Picturesfgate.com
The primary concern regarding Colin Kaepernick in the 2013 season was his ability to work through his progressions. Slow motion film showed his eyes dropping down at the pocket closing in on him and not seeing open receivers other than his first option, check down or otherwise. Kaepernick has been working relentlessly in the offseason, and at least for week one, the work shows. Greg Cosell of NFL films, was on his weekly guest spot on The Herd with Colin Cowherd, and this was his play of the week. 

"Colin Kaepernick's 37 yard completion to Anquan Boldin, I believe it was on the first series. I really loved this play because one of the things that we've talked about a lot with Kaepernick is he doesn't really have great pocket command, that when he feels pressure he essentially leaves the pocket and makes himself a runner, which becomes a random play, eventhough maybe he has more raw physical talent than any guy in the league, his athleticism.
This 37 yarder is terrific to me because he drops back off of play action, so he turns his back, and that's the first thing you have to notice, he turns his back and as soon as he turns around, the first thing he sees is a white jersey right in his line of sight, so he moves to his left right into other pressure from an OLB on a blitz, so instead of just fleeing the pocket, which very often he's done, he steps up, sees Anquan Boldin on a deeper route, this is not a check down, sets his feet, and delivers an incredible strike that not many quarterbacks can make and as soon as he delivers the ball, he takes a wicked hit. This, to me, is quarterbacking. This is using the pocket, navigating the pocket to find a quieter space to throw, stepping into your throw, planting, knowing you're going to get hit. This, to me, is what NFL quarterbacking is." 


Follow @gregcosell