On Sunday in Buffalo, the 49ers hoped to halt their three-game slide.
Instead, the team slid right off a cliff. San Francisco was pounded by the Bills, 45-16, to fall to 1-5 this season. The change to Colin Kaepernick at quarterback didn't do a thing to change the team's fortunes.
Unfortunately for San Francisco, the holes in the defense are huge, and the Bills ran through them all day en route to the convincing victory.
The 49ers run defense was shredded for 298 yards and four touchdowns, including three by LeSean McCoy, who rushed for a team-high 140 yards. The 49ers came into the game struggling to stop opposing running backs, yet performed even more poorly Sunday vs. the Bills. It marks the fourth straight game the 49ers have allowed an opposing back to rush for 100 or more yards.
On offense, meanwhile, the 49ers hoped a change at QB, with Kaepernick taking over for Blaine Gabbert, would spark something. At first, it appeared perhaps that Kaepernick was on the right track. When he hit Torrey Smith on a 53-yard TD play in the second quarter, it gave the Niners a 10-7 lead.
The Bills immediately answered with a TD of their own, however, and never looked back en route to the lopsided win.
Kaepernick finished 13-of-29 for 187 yards, while also rushing eight times for 66 yards. Kaepernick was off target a bit in the second half, appearing to miss several open throws, including deep routes to Smith and Jeremy Kerley.
Kaepernick drew both cheers and jeers in Buffalo for his continued protest during the playing of the national anthem to draw attention to social injustice. Some news outlets reported a Bills fan threw a beer bottle at Kaepernick as he stood along the sideline with the defense on the field.
With five straight losses now, the reeling 49ers will try to regroup for next Sunday's game vs. Tampa Bay.