The 49ers rallied in the second half to beat the Chargers on Sunday night, but they had to do it without the help of linebacker Dre Greenlaw.
Greenlaw was ejected late in the first half for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert while Herbert was running with the ball on a third down. NFL senior vice president of officiating Walt Anderson called the hit “a flagrant act” when he spoke to a pool reporter about why a disqualification was warranted after the game, but 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan expressed surprise about the level of the penalty during his own press conference.
“It kind of actually blew my mind,” Shanahan said, via Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com. “I understand the penalty. I totally get that right at the third down marker, he was lowering his shoulder, but I have got to learn what that is. I get how it is with penalties and stuff because I think he did hit his helmet . . . but I thought there had to be intent and something unnecessary, and that was a big play right there. For us to lose Greenlaw for the whole game off that, that really shocked me. So, hopefully they can teach us that so we can understand why we lost one of our players.”
Herbert left the game for the rest of the half, but returned for the second half. He wasn’t able to stop the 49ers from outscoring the Chargers 12-0 on their way to a 22-16 victory.