The San Francisco 49ers notched a season-saving win over the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football. It was an all-around team effort, but wide receiver Deebo Samuel was one of the catalysts. After an impressive outing, he trolled All-Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald.
Donald and Samuel have history with one another, but the Niners’ wideout got the last laugh.
Aaron Donald previously claimed not to know who Deebo Samuel was
San Francisco 49ers wideout Deebo Samuel and LA Rams star defensive tackle Aaron Donald have an ongoing rivalry dating back to the 2020 season.
Ahead of LA’s Week 5 matchup against the 49ers, reporters asked Donald about how the defense could game plan for a player like Samuel. The six-time All-Pro gave an epic response.
“Who?” asked Donald. “Who’s that?”
It’s unclear if the defensive lineman actually didn’t know who Samuel was or if he was trolling. Still, it undoubtedly caught the attention of the Niners’ receiver.
The South Carolina product caught six passes for 66 yards and one touchdown, and the 49ers won 24-16 in the game following Donald’s comments.
Deebo Samuel is now 5-0 against Aaron Donald after the Week 10 victory in 2021. If the Rams’ superstar didn’t know who Samuel was before, he does now.
The 49ers wideout trolled the Rams defensive lineman
Deebo Samuel shined the brightest in the San Francisco 49ers’ primetime victory over the LA Rams.
The third-year wideout did it all for Kyle Shanahan’s offense. He recorded five receptions for 97 yards and one touchdown. He also tacked on 36 yards on the ground and another score.
The Rams’ vaunted defense didn’t look good, and San Francisco did everything it wanted to do.
After the game, Samuel took to Instagram to troll Aaron Donald. The caption read, “Who’s that?” The wide receiver cleverly crafted his response, and he earned the right to talk trash after the performance he put forth.
Deebo Samuel just continues to add to his stellar 2021 campaign. He’s caught 54 passes for 979 yards and five touchdowns in nine games. Donald’s teammate, Cooper Kupp, is the only player with more receiving yards than the Niners’ star (1,141).
Samuel’s do-it-all performance helped launch the 49ers to their fourth victory of the season in a must-win scenario.
San Francisco’s statement win saved its season
The San Francisco 49ers had their backs against the wall, heading into the Monday Night Football matchup. They responded in a way that no one expected.
The Niners dominated the Rams from start to finish. Kyle Shanahan was on the hot seat. His squad appeared to be another loss or two away from knocking itself out of playoff contention. Instead, the 49ers went out and proved they’re not out of it yet.
The 49ers established the run early. They finished with 156 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Jimmy Garoppolo played a clean game, completing 15 of 19 passes for 182 yards and two touchdowns.
Shanahan returned to the team’s run-first identity, which took pressure off Jimmy G’s shoulders. That’s the recipe for success in San Francisco.
The 49ers’ defense stepped up, too. With all of the hype surrounding Odell Beckham Jr.’s debut, Matthew Stafford and the Rams’ offense stunk up the place. San Francisco held LA to just 10 points.
The Niners are sitting at 4-5, good for third place in the NFC West. The team now has some momentum to string together some wins and compete for one of three NFC Wild-Card spots.
Deebo Samuel and Aaron Donald will see each other again in Week 18, with playoff implications potentially on the line.
All statistics courtesy of Pro Football Reference.