2002 San Francisco 49ers season

2002 San Francisco 49ers season

2002 San Francisco 49ers season
Head coach Steve Mariucci
Home field 3Com Park
Results
Record 10–6
Division place 1st NFC West
Playoff finish Lost NFC Divisional Playoff
Timeline
Previous season      Next season
< 2001      2003 >

The 2002 San Francisco 49ers season was the team's 56th season, and 52nd in the National Football League.

The first season following divisional realignment, the Niners won the new-look NFC West title with a 10–6 record; they swept new division rivals Seattle and Arizona while splitting with the Rams; the Niners lost to former division rival New Orleans. In the playoffs the Niners fell behind the New York Giants 38–14 but erupted with 25 unanswered points and survived a chaotic last-second field goal attempt by the Giants; the 39–38 win was the 26th playoff win in the team's history. The Niners lost the next week at Tampa Bay and coach Steve Mariucci was fired, the result of a power struggle with owner John York and new general manager Terry Donahue. 2002 was the last winning season for the 49ers until 2011, when they finally snapped their eight-year streak of non-winning seasons.

Offseason

NFL draft

Round # Pick # Player Position College

Personnel

Staff

Owner: John York Head Coach: Steve Mariucci

Roster

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result TV Time Attendance
1 September 5, 2002 (Thu) at New York Giants W 16–13 ESPN 8:30et
78,748
2 September 15, 2002 Denver Broncos L 14–24 CBS 4:15et
67,685
3 September 22, 2002 Washington Redskins W 20–10 FOX 4:15et
67,541
4 BYE WEEK
5 October 6, 2002 St. Louis Rams W 37–13 FOX 4:15et
67,853
6 October 14, 2002 (Mon) at Seattle Seahawks W 28–21 ABC 9:00et
66,420
7 October 20, 2002 at New Orleans Saints L 27–35 FOX 1:00et
67,903
8 October 27, 2002 Arizona Cardinals W 38–28 FOX 4:15et
67,173
9 November 3, 2002 at Oakland Raiders W 23–20 (OT) FOX 4:15et
62,660
10 November 10, 2002 Kansas City Chiefs W 17–13 CBS 4:15et
67,881
11 November 17, 2002 at San Diego Chargers L 17–20 (OT) FOX 4:15et
67,161
12 November 25, 2002 (Mon) Philadelphia Eagles L 17–38 ABC 9:00et
67,919
13 December 1, 2002 Seattle Seahawks W 31–24 FOX 4:15et
67,594
14 December 8, 2002 at Dallas Cowboys W 31–27 FOX 1:00et
64,097
15 December 15, 2002 Green Bay Packers L 14–20 FOX 4:15et
67,947
16 December 21, 2002 (Sat) at Arizona Cardinals W 17–14 FOX 4:15et
44,051
17 December 30, 2002 (Mon) at St. Louis Rams L 31–20 ABC 9:00et
66,118

Notable games

Week One at New York Giants - The 49ers clawed to a 13-6 lead on three Kerry Collins interceptions, but a late Tiki Barber score tied the game 13-13. Two Jeff Garcia passes for 45 yards and three Garrison Hearst runs for seven yards set up Jose Cortez's 36-yard field goal with ten seconds left and the 16-13 49ers win.
Week Two vs. Denver Broncos - Despite an eight-yard touchdown to Terrell Owens, Jeff Garcia struggled in San Francisco's home opener, fumbling in the third quarter then throwing an interception to Deltha O'Neal in the fourth. A late rushing score by Garcia made the final score 24-14 for the Broncos.
Week Three vs. Washington Redskins - Jeff Garcia and Tim Rattay combined for just 125 passing yards as the Niners won 20-10. Food poisoning forced Garcia out of the game. "I just didn't feel real crisp," Garcia said in the postgame press conference.
Week Six at Seattle Seahawks - On Monday Night Football Terrell Owens caught two touchdowns, including what turned out to be the game-winner in the final eight minutes. After one touchdown Owens took out a magic marker and autographed the football before giving it to one of his assistants in the endzone grandstands, a maneuver that caused a stir in football circles.
Week Seven at New Orleans Saints - The 4-1 49ers faced the 5-1 Saints for the first time since divisional realignment split the two clubs out of the NFC West and formed the new NFC South. The two clubs put up a combined 840 yards of offense; the Niners led 24-13 after three quarters but the Saints outscored San Francisco 22-3 in the fourth quarter; Jeff Garcia was intercepted with 2:30 to go and Aaron Brooks ran in a one-yard touchdown for the 35-27 Saints win.
Week Nine at Oakland Raiders - The two Bay Area teams clashed in an overtime grinder as Rich Gannon threw for 164 yards and a one-yard touchdown to Jerry Porter. Garcia threw for 282 yards and two scores and rushed for 46 yards, 21 of them in overtime following a missed 27-yard Jose Cortez field goal attempt at the end of regulation. Cortez nailed the 23-yard kick in overtime for the 23-20 49ers win.
Week Thirteen vs Seattle Seahawks - The Niners raced to a 31-10 lead behind three Garrison Hearst touchdown runs and a punt return score. In the fourth quarter Matt Hasselback (who had 427 passing yards in all) scored twice on passes to Koren Robinson and Darrell Jackson but was intercepted with 1:31 to go, ending the 31-24 Niners win.
Week Fourteen at Dallas Cowboys - Though the championship rivalry of a decade past had cooled off with the fall of the Cowboys to sub-mediocrity, the game at Texas Stadium nonetheless resembled Cowboy-49er clashes of yore. Despite intercepting Chad Hutchinson twice the 49ers saw the game lead change four times before the Cowboys surged to a 27-17 lead in the fourth quarter. Jeff Garcia then stormed the 49ers to the win on touchdowns to Tai Streets and a bobbling eight-yard catch by Terrell Owens with fifteen seconds remaining. In the 31-27 49ers win the two teams combined for 35 fourth-quarter points.

Standings

NFC West
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
z (4) San Francisco 49ers 10 6 0 .625 5–1 8–4 367 351 L1
St. Louis Rams[h] 7 9 0 .438 4–2 5–7 316 369 W1
Seattle Seahawks 7 9 0 .438 2–4 5–7 355 369 W3
Arizona Cardinals 5 11 0 .313 1–5 5–7 262 417 L3

2002 Schedule

Week 1: at New York Giants

1 2 3 4 Total
49ers 3 0 7 6 16
Giants 3 3 0 7 13

at Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey

  • Game Date: Thursday, September 5, 2002
  • Game Leaders

Passing: K. Collins (NYG)- 28/45 342 yards, 0 TD, 3 Int

Rushing: G. Hearst (SF)- 12 ATT 40 yards, 0 TD

Receiving: A. Toomer (NYG)- 9 REC 134 yards, 0 TD

  • Scoring Summary

First Quarter-

New York Giants- M. Bryant 29-yard Field Goal (11 plays, 69 yards; 5:59)

San Francisco 49ers- J. Cortez 23-yard Field Goal (9 plays, 63 yards; 4:52)

Second Quarter-

New York Giants- M. Bryant 33-yard Field Goal (8 palys, 47 yards; 1:03)

Third Quarter-

San Francisco 49ers- G. Hearst 9 yeard pass from J. Garcia (J. Cotez kick) (8 plays, 52 yards; 4:26)

Forth Quarter-

San Francisco 49ers- J. Cortez 33-yard Field goal (9 plays, 49 yards; 4:54)

New York Giants- T. Barber 1-yard run (M. Bryant Kick) (14 plays, 77 yards; 6:13)

San Francisco 49ers- J. Cortez 36-yard Field Goal (6 Plays, 52 Yards; 1:49)

  • Scoring Leader: J. Cortez (SF) 10 PTS

Week 2: vs. Denver Broncos

1 2 3 4 Total
Broncos 0 3 7 14 24
49ers 0 7 0 7 14

at Monster Park, San Francisco, California

  • Game Date: Sunday, September 15, 2002
  • Game Leaders

Passing: J. Garcia (SF)- 27/36 205 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: M. Anderson (DEN)- 10 ATT 95 yards, 0 TD

Receiving: E. Johnson (SF)- 7 REC 69 yards, 0 TD

  • Scoring Summary

First Quarter-

No Scoring

Second Quarter-

San Francisco 49ers- T. Owens 8-yard pass from J. Garcia (J. Cortez Kick) (6 Plays, 56 Yards; 2:37)

Denver Broncos- J. Elam 28-yard Field goal (5 plays, 17 yards; 1:19)

Third Quarter-

Denver Broncos- M. Anderson 1-yard pass from B. Griese (J. Elam Kick) (10 plays, 74 yards; 5:59)

Forth Quarter-

Denver Broncos- O. Gary 1-yard run (J. Elam Kick) (4 plays, 46 yards; 1:59)

Denver Broncos- S. Montgomery 11-yard pass from B. Griese (J. Elam Kick) (13 plays, 99 yards; 6:37)

San Francisco 49ers- J. Garcia 1-yard run (J. Cortez kick) (8 Plays, 67 Yards; 1:35)

  • Scoring Leader: B. Griese (DEN) 12 PTS

Notes

This was the first time in 14 years that a game between the 49ers and Broncos was not nationally televised. Between 1989 and 2000, the teams met on national television four consecutive times, on four different networks: Super Bowl XXIV on CBS, a Saturday afternoon game in 1994 on NBC, a Monday night game on ABC in 1997, and a Saturday afternoon game in 2000 on Fox.

Playoffs

NFC Wild Card Playoff Game – January 5, 2003

  • San Francisco 49ers 39, New York Giants 38
1 2 3 4 Total
Giants 7 21 10 0 38
49ers 7 7 8 17 39
[1]

at 3Com Park, San Francisco, CA

The Steelers' comeback earlier in the day (36–33 over the Cleveland Browns) was matched by San Francisco's similar late drive, overcoming a 38–14 deficit by scoring 25 unanswered points in the second half. A last-minute Giants drive collapsed when Trey Junkin botched a field goal snap, leading to a desperation heave to the endzone that fell short. The win was the 26th in a playoff game for the club and last until the 2011 Divisional Playoffs.

NFC Divisional Playoff Game - Sunday January 12, 2003

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31, San Francisco 49ers 6
1 2 3 4 Total
49ers 3 3 0 0 6
Buccaneers 7 21 3 0 31
  • Scoring
    • TB - Alstott 2 run (Gramatica kick) TB 7-0
    • SF - field goal Chandler 24 TB 7-3
    • TB - Jurevicius 20 pass from B. Johnson (Gramatica kick) TB 14-3
    • SF - field goal Chandler 40 TB 14-6
    • TB - Dudley 12 pass from B. Johnson (Gramatica kick) TB 21-6
    • TB - Alstott 2 run (Gramatica kick) TB 28-6
    • TB - field goal Gramatica 19 TB 31-6

The Buccaneers, with the league's top ranked defense during the 2002 regular season, forced five turnovers, sacked quarterback Jeff Garcia four times, and limited the 49ers to only two field goals. Tampa Bay quarterback Brad Johnson, who had been sidelined for a month, returned to throw for 196 yards and two touchdowns. Fullback Mike Alstott scored two touchdowns, while the Buccaneers held onto the ball for 36:46 and held the 49ers to a season low 228 yards. This was San Francisco's first playoff game without a touchdown since 1986. Despite San Francisco's 10-6 record and their wildcard playoff win against New York, coach Steve Mariucci was fired three days after this game. The 49ers would not return to the playoffs until 2011.

References

  • 49ers on Pro Football Reference
  • 49ers Schedule on jt-sw.com