SAN FRANCISCO (CBS Sports) — The San Francisco 49ers coaches gathered at the team’s Santa Clara facility on Saturday night to watch the Saints-Lions wild-card game and eat pizza. They must have been daunted by what they saw.

New Orleans dropped 45 points on the Lions, Drew Brees passed for 466 yards and the Saints rolled up a NFL record 626 yards worth of offense. Strangely, the 49ers might have also been heartened by what they saw. The game was tight throughout the first half, and when the Saints blew out Detroit in the second half, most of it was because of Lions mistakes.

The 49ers compiled a 13-3 record because of their uncanny ability to avoid mistakes. Also the Saints were able to take advantage of Detroit weaknesses and those weaknesses happen to be 49ers’ strengths.

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(© 2012 CBS Interactive. All rights reserved.)


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