SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The 49ers shut down the Pittsburgh Steelers 20-3 at Candlestick Park Monday night in a game delayed by two power outages.

“Their defense is playing amazing,” John Madden told the KCBS morning crew. “And then the other area is their special teams… What (kicker) David Aker does… what (Andy) Lee does as a punter, and gives them those field positions and puts the team down there, I mean they’re just good.”

Madden said an exceptional defense and excellent special teams play makes the 49ers one of the elite teams in the league.

“When you put all the parts together, right now this could be the best team… Their defense is probably their best part. Their special teams are probably the second best part. Then their offense is third. And although this is a quarterback league, a passing league and all those things, if you don’t have special teams and you don’t have defense, you can be exposed quickly.”

Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, hobbling on a bad ankle, continued to play late in the game even when it was clear the 49ers would win.

“I would have taken Ben out,” Madden said. “Roethlisberger probably had something to do with it… ‘If it’s my game, if you’re going to give me the game, give me the whole game, don’t let me not finish it.’ That type of mentality is good sometimes, but sometimes you have to throw it out the window too.” (8:00)

Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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