The 49ers entered the season as the defending NFC champions, qualified for the playoffs as the fifth seed Wild Card, and hoped to win a sixth Super Bowl title, after falling just short during the previous season. The 49ers' defeated the Green Bay Packers 23–20 in the Wild Card round and the Carolina Panthers 23–10 in the Divisional round, but lost to the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship by a score of 23–17.
^[b] The team acquired an additional third-round selection (No. 74 overall) as part of a trade that sent a 2012 fourth-round selection to the Carolina Panthers.
^[c] The team acquired an additional fifth-round selection (No. 157 overall) as part of a trade that sent a 2012 third-round selection to the Indianapolis Colts.
^[d] The team traded a fifth-round selection (No. 164 overall) and seventh-round selection (No. 227 overall) to the Cleveland Browns for quarterbackColt McCoy and a sixth-round selection (No. 173 overall).
^[e] The team acquired an additional sixth-round selection (No. 180 overall) as part of a trade that sent a 2012 fourth-round selection to the Miami Dolphins.
^[h] The team traded their first-round selection (No. 31) and one of their third-round selections (No. 74 overall) to the Dallas Cowboys for a first-round selection (No. 18).
^[i] The team traded one of their second-round selections (No. 34 overall) to the Tennessee Titans for a second-round selection (No. 40 overall), a seventh-round selection (No. 216 overall), and a 2014 third-round selection.
^[j] The team traded a second-round selection (No. 61 overall) and sixth-round selection (No. 173 overall) to the Green Bay Packers for a second-round selection (No. 55 overall).
^[k] The team traded a third-round selection (No. 93 overall) and seventh-round selection (No. 216 overall) to the Green Bay Packers for a third-round selection (No. 88 overall).
Colin Kaepernick set a career high with 412 yards passing and 3 touchdowns, the first 400-yard passing game by a 49ers Quarterback since Tim Rattay on October 10, 2004, as well as the first 400-yard, 3 touchdown passing game since Jeff Garcia in 1999. Anquan Boldin, making his debut as a 49er, racked up 208 yards receiving on 13 receptions, and scored 1 touchdown. Vernon Davis had 6 receptions for 98 yards and two touchdowns.
The 49ers season got back on track with a heavy Thursday Night Football victory over divisional opponent St Louis. Both the passing and running offense were effective in the victory, a positive sign of things to come, while the defense was its usual strong.
Another large victory gave the 49ers their first back-to-back victories of the season. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick only completed 6 of his 15 passes, with the running attack and defense at the top of their games. Frank Gore and Anthony Dixon ran for touchdowns, while cornerback Tramaine Brock picked off two Matt Schaub passes, one for a touchdown on Schaub's first pass of the game, with Tony Jerod-Eddie also picking up an interception. The 49ers improved to 3-2, just one game off the 4-1 Seattle Seahawks in the battle for NFC West, who had lost to the Indianapolis Colts.
A third straight win for the 49ers as the offense and defense sparked. Colin Kaepernick had 252 yards for 2 touchdowns, both to Vernon Davis, Frank Gore ran for 101 yards, and the defense forced four turnovers for the second consecutive game.
The 49ers cruised to a fourth consecutive win thanks to a strong running game, with Frank Gore picking up 70 yards for 2 touchdowns and Colin Kaepernick 68 yards for 1 touchdown. The final scoreline was flattering for the young Titans, who fell to a 24-0 deficit at the end of the third quarter. A muffed punt for a touchdown for Kassim Osgood was also a highlight for the 49ers.
Frank Gore and Colin Kaepernick each ran for two touchdowns in the 49ers comfortable victory over the 0-9 Jaguars at Wembley Stadium in London, the eighth NFL match the venue has hosted, to improve to 6-2.
After 5 straight victories, the 49ers dropped another home match following their bye. The Panthers' defense was too strong, limiting Colin Kaepernick to 91 yards, 0 touchdowns and 1 interception as the 49ers could only score 3 field goals. The mid-game loss of Tight End Vernon Davis and Safety Eric Reid to concussions didn't aid the 49ers cause as they fell to 6-3. The 49ers would get their revenge in the Divisional Round of the Playoffs, winning 23-10 away to Carolina.
Another set of back-to-back losses came in controversial circumstance for the 49ers that saw the team slip to 6-4. The 49ers lead 20-17 with under 5 minutes to go in the final quarter, before two Garrett Hartley field goals won it for the Saints, the second as time expired. On the drive leading to the first or these field goals, linebacker Ahmad Brooks was flagged for a contentious personal foul on Drew Brees for a blow to the neck on a sack and fumble, leading to a 15-yard penalty. Colin Kaepernick's three and out between the field goals also was a major contributor to the Saints' victory.
The 49ers got back to winning ways with a comfortable victory in Washington. Colin Kaepernick hit form with 235 yards and 3 touchdowns, while Redskins' quarterback Robert Griffin III threw just 118 yards and an interception in addition to being sacked 4 times, in a match-up between what are widely considered two of the league's best young quarterbacks. The 49ers improved to 7-4 as they looked to seal a playoff spot and pressure Seattle for the NFC West crown.
The 49ers defeated the Rams for the second time this season on the back of strong performances from the passing offense. Colin Kaepernick threw for 275 yards and a touchdown, Anquan Boldin caught 9 passes for 98 yards, Michael Crabtree caught a 60-yard pass in his first game for 6 months following an achilles injury, and Vernon Davis athletically hurdled his way over a defender on two separate occasions for 82 yards and a touchdown, the 49ers improving to 8-4.
Seeking to avenge their week 2 loss in Seattle, the 49ers defense held Seahawks quarter back Russell Wilson and running back Marshawn Lynch to 199 passing yards and 72 rushing yards respectively. 4 field goals from kicker Phil Dawson, an 8-yard touchdown pass to tight end Vernon Davis, and a 51-yard rush by running back Frank Gore in the fourth quarter lifted the 49ers to a 19–17 victory and improved their record to 9–4. The win also continued the Seahawks' losing streak at Candlestick Park since 2008. This would not be the last time these two teams would meet as they met again in the 2013 NFC Championship game.
The 10th win of the season and 4th consecutive win came easily as the 49ers looked to clinch a playoff spot. Vernon Davis caught a touchdown for the fifth consecutive game and Michael Crabtree caught his first touchdown since returning from injury as Colin Kaepernick threw for 203 yards and 2 touchdowns.
The 49ers played their final regular season game at Candlestick Park on Monday, December 23, 2013 against the Atlanta Falcons. Their 34–24 victory came after an interception by NaVorro Bowman with 1:28 left in the game. The play would seal a win for a playoff spot for the 49ers and is called The Pick at the Stick by some sports columnists. This game was also Candlestick Park's 36th and final game on Monday Night Football, the most at any stadium used by the NFL.
Phil Dawson kicked a 40-yard field goal as time expired to lock up the 5th seed for the 49ers. The 49ers started on fire, leading 17-0 after the first quarter, with the Cardinals showing courage and determination in their fightback, squaring the game at 20-20 before LaMichael James' 45-yard kickoff return and two quick completions by Colin Kaepernick set up Dawson's game winner. Anquan Boldin was very impressive, catching 9 passes for 149 yards and a touchdown in his first game back in Arizona after the Cardinals traded him to Baltimore prior to the 2010 season. The 49ers finished the season with an impressive 12-4 record, half a win better than the previous season, to give them 2nd place in NFC West and the 5th seed in the playoffs (the 49ers won the NFC West and had the 2nd seed in 2012), securing them a trip to Green Bay in the Wild Card Round.
In one of the coldest games in NFL playoff history, Colin Kaepernick throws for 227 yards and runs for a game high 98 as the 49ers beat the Packers 23-20. The Packers tied the game at 20 with a FG with 5:06 left, but Kaepernick led the 49ers down the field to set a game winning 33 yard field goal by Phil Dawson as time expired. The 49ers are now 4-0 against Green Bay in the last 2 years, after going 1-11 against them (including playoffs) from 1995 to 2010. This was also the first time ever the 49ers won at Green Bay in the playoffs.
NFC Divisional Round Playoff Game: at Carolina Panthers
NFC Divisional Round Playoff Game: #5 San Francisco 49ers at #2 Carolina Panthers;– Game summary
The 49ers advanced to their 3rd consecutive NFC Championship game by beating a red hot Carolina Panthers team, 23-10. Coming into the game, the Panthers had won eleven of their last twelve games and finished the season ranked number two in total defense. This game was a rematch from week 10, with the Panthers winning 10-9. This time though, it was the 49ers who would come out victorious. Two key goal line stands by the 49ers defense in the 2nd quarter (including a stop on 4th and goal at the 1 yard line) were the major difference in the game. The 49ers defense shut the Panthers out in the 2nd half with constant pressure on Cam Newton, sacking him twice and intercepting a pass late in the 4th quarter that shut down any chance Carolina had at a comeback. Colin Kaepernick went 15 for 28 for 196 yards, 1 touchdown and no interceptions while Anquan Boldin had 8 catches for 136 yards. The 23 points by the 49ers were the most points the Panthers allowed at home this year. The 49ers now head to Seattle.
Though the 49ers led 10-0, the Seahawks came back and then survived a late 49ers comeback attempt . With Seattle leading 20-17 in the 4th quarter, Colin Kaepernick tried to rally his team, but fumbled once and threw 2 interceptions in the final three drives of the game for San Francisco. Seahawks outscored San Francisco 20-7 in the 2nd half. In the fourth quarter, NaVorro Bowman suffered a major knee injury on a tackle and forced fumble near the goal line; his recovery of the ensuing fumble was not seen by the officials (and the league later agreed that the officials had missed the call); the 49ers forced another fumble on the next play and recovered it, but they could not take advantage. In the last minute of play, Kaepernick again had the 49ers in position to try for a win, but his pass to Michael Crabtree in the end zone was deflected by Richard Sherman and intercepted by Malcolm Smith, locking up the win for Seattle. Many fans stated that this game was the real "Super Bowl", as many believed these were the 2 best teams in the NFL, with their dominant defenses. That belief was backed up by the Seahawks 43-8 thrashing of the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl.