Michael Turner has yet to get untracked after a big 2008 season.
(Paul Spinelli / Associated Press)
Warrick Dunn rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown to lead the Falcons past the 49ers, 20-16, in Week 9 of the 2007 season.
The Niners have won three of the past five meetings in this rivalry between old NFC West teams (the Falcons switched when the NFC South division was created in 2002). San Francisco owns a commanding 44-28-1 overall series advantage, including the playoffs.
Keep your eye on ...
Michael Turner's ability to break free: Last season's second-leading rusher in the NFL has not performed up to expectations this season. He has only 226 yards in three games and is averaging a full yard less per carry this year (3.5) than he did in 2008 (4.5). It won't be easy for him to turn it around against the 49ers and their fourth-ranked rushing defense.
Jason Elam's kicking accuracy: Elam is coming off one of the best seasons in his career, having connected on 29-of-31 field goals last year. In 2009, however, Elam has struggled to get going. He missed a 35-yarder in his final preseason game and then missed from 42 and 38 yards out in the season-opener. He also missed his first extra point since 2005 in the opener. He hasn't had many opportunities in his last two outings, but against a strong 49ers team, the Falcons cannot afford for him to continue missing from inside of 45 yards.
Vernon Davis' emergence: San Francisco's athletic tight end finally appears to be living up to his potential. Long considered one of the most talented players in the league physically, he is starting to match his production to his natural ability. He leads all NFL tight ends with three touchdowns and leads the 49ers with 17 receptions.
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