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Rookie kicker helps Rams surprise 49ers in overtime

ST. LOUIS -- Rookie Greg Zuerlein kicked a 54-yard field goal with 26 seconds left in overtime after booting a 53-yarder as time expired in regulation, and the St. Louis Rams beat the San Francisco 49ers 16-13 on Sunday, avoiding a second tie in three weeks against the NFC West leaders.

The Rams (5-6-1) scored twice in the final 3:04 of regulation, scoring their lone touchdown when rookie Janoris Jenkins returned an errant pitchout by Colin Kaepernick 2 yards for a score. St. Louis has won two in a row after an 0-4-1 skid.

The 49ers (8-3-1) failed to take advantage of Rams rookie Johnny Hekker's 14-yard punt to midfield when David Akers was barely wide right on a 51-yard field-goal attempt with 4:11 to go in overtime. Akers is just 7 of 15 when kicking from 40 yards and beyond.

Zuerlein is 7 of 11 when kicking from 50 yards and beyond, and he had plenty of distance on the kick on fourth-and-inches. Before the 53-yarder at the end of regulation, Zuerlein had missed four of his previous seven attempts.

Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press

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