|2015 San Francisco 49ers season|
|Head coach||Jim Tomsula|
|General manager||Trent Baalke|
|Home field||Levi's Stadium|
|Division place||4th NFC West|
|Playoff finish||Did not qualify|
|Pro Bowlers||ILB NaVorro Bowman|
T Joe Staley
|AP All-Pros||NaVorro Bowman (1st team)|
The 2015 season was the San Francisco 49ers' 66th in the National Football League, the 70th overall, second playing their home games at Levi's Stadium, and the only season under head coach Jim Tomsula. They were attempting to make history as the first Super Bowl host team to play the Super Bowl on their own home field, but they failed to improve on their 8-8 record from 2014, and ended with a 5-11 record to miss the playoffs for the second season in a row. They also finished last in the NFC West for the first time in a decade, and marked the 31st consecutive year in which the Super Bowl did not include the team in whose region the game was being played -- a feat that never has been achieved since themselves in 1984.
With their loss to the Seattle Seahawks in Week 15 of the 2014-15 season, the 49ers were mathematically eliminated from the postseason, exacerbating tensions between Head Coach Jim Harbaugh and General Manager Trent Baalke. After the season ended, the 49ers and Harbaugh mutually agreed to end his contract. On January 14, 2015, Jim Tomsula was promoted to head coach after serving as defensive line coach with the team since 2007; it is his second time at the helm, as he previously served as the 49ers' interim head coach for one game, after Mike Singletary's firing in 2010.
|Date signed/released||2015 team||Notes|
|QB||Blaine Gabbert||UFA||March 12, 2015||San Francisco 49ers||Signed 2 year/$2 million|
|QB||Josh Johnson||UFA||April 2, 2015||Cincinnati Bengals|||
|RB||Frank Gore||UFA||March 10, 2015||Indianapolis Colts||Signed 3 year/$12 million|
|WR||Michael Crabtree||UFA||April 13, 2015||Oakland Raiders||Signed 1 year/$3.2 million|
|G||Mike Iupati||UFA||March 10, 2015||Arizona Cardinals||Signed 5 year/$40 million|
|LB||Dan Skuta||UFA||March 11, 2015||Jacksonville Jaguars||Signed 5 year/$20.5 million|
|LB||Desmond Bishop||UFA||March 31, 2015||San Francisco 49ers||Signed 1 year|
|CB||Chris Culliver||UFA||March 13, 2015||Washington Redskins||Signed 4 year/$32 million|
|CB||Perrish Cox||UFA||March 14, 2015||Tennessee Titans||Signed 3 year/$15 million|
|CB||Chris Cook||UFA||March 14, 2015||San Francisco 49ers||Signed 1 year|
|LS||Kyle Nelson||RFA||March 6, 2015||San Francisco 49ers||Signed 4 year|
|TE||Garrett Celek||RFA||March 12, 2015||San Francisco 49ers||Signed 1 year|
|RFA: Restricted free agent, UFA: Unrestricted free agent, ERFA: Exclusive rights free agent
|Position||Player||2014 Team||Date signed||Notes|
|DE||Darnell Dockett||Arizona Cardinals||March 5, 2015||Signed 2 year/$7.5 million |
|WR||Jerome Simpson||Minnesota Vikings||March 5, 2015||Signed 2-year deal|
|WR||Torrey Smith||Baltimore Ravens||March 11, 2015||Signed 5 year/$40 million|
|RB||Reggie Bush||Detroit Lions||March 14, 2015||Signed 1 year/2.5 million|
|CB||Shareece Wright||San Diego Chargers||March 14, 2015||Signed 1 year/$3 million|
|OT||Erik Pears||Buffalo Bills||March 14, 2015||Signed 2 year/$4.7 million|
|LB||Nick Bellore||New York Jets||April 3, 2015||Signed 2-year deal|
|LB||Philip Wheeler||Miami Dolphins||April 30, 2015|||
|LB||Shawn Lemon||August 8, 2015|||
|LB||Steve Beauharnais||Washington Redskins||August 7, 2015|||
|Indicates that the player was a free agent at the end of his respective team's 2014 season.|
|S||Bubba Ventrone||March 3, 2015||Retired|
|LB||Patrick Willis||March 10, 2015||Retired|
|WR||Stevie Johnson||March 12, 2015||Released|
|LB||Chris Borland||March 16, 2015||Retired|
|OT||Jonathan Martin||March 26, 2015||Released|
|WR||Trindon Holliday||April 30, 2015||Released|
|G||Fouimalo Fonoti||April 30, 2015||Waived|
|WR||Lance Lewis||April 30, 2015||Waived|
|DE||Justin Smith||May 18, 2015||Retired|
|OT||Anthony Davis||June 5, 2015||Retired|
|P||Andy Lee||June 6, 2015||Traded|
|LB||Aldon Smith||August 7, 2015||Released|
|CB||Chris Cook||August 5, 2015||Released|
|TE||Vernon Davis||November 2, 2015||Traded|
|Draft order||Player name||Position||Height||Weight||College||Notes|
|1||15||15||Traded to the San Diego Chargers[a]|
|17||17||Arik Armstead||Defensive end||6'7"||292||Oregon||From Chargers[a]|
|3||15||79||Eli Harold||Defensive end||6'3"||247||Virginia|
|4||14||113||Traded to the Buffalo Bills[b]|
|18||117||Blake Bell||Tight end||6'6"||252||Oklahoma||From Chargers[a]|
|27||126||Mike Davis||Running back||5'9"||217||South Carolina||From Broncos[c]|
|33||132||DeAndre Smelter||Wide receiver||6'2"||226||Georgia Tech||Compensatory pick|
|5||15||151||Traded to the Indianapolis Colts[f]|
|29||165||Bradley Pinion||Punter||6'5"||229||Clemson||From Colts[f]|
|6||14||190||Ian Silberman||Guard||6'5"||306||Boston College|
|7||15||232||Traded to the Miami Dolphins[d]|
|27||244||Trenton Brown||Guard||6'8"||355||Florida||From Colts[f]|
|29||246||Traded to the Dallas Cowboys[g]||From Colts[e]|
|37||254||Rory Anderson||Tight end||South Carolina||Compensatory pick|
|RB||Jarryd Hayne||None||Played professional Rugby league from 2006 to 2014 in Australia|
|QB||Dylan Thompson||South Carolina|
|OLB||Marcus Rush||Michigan State|
|WR||Darius Davis||Henderson State|
|1||August 15||at Houston Texans||L 10-23||0-1||NRG Stadium||Recap|
|2||August 23||Dallas Cowboys||W 23-6||1-1||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|3||August 29||at Denver Broncos||L 12-19||1-2||Sports Authority Field at Mile High||Recap|
|4||September 3||San Diego Chargers||W 14-12||2-2||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|1||September 14||Minnesota Vikings||W 20-3||1-0||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|2||September 20||at Pittsburgh Steelers||L 18-43||1-1||Heinz Field||Recap|
|3||September 27||at Arizona Cardinals||L 7-47||1-2||University of Phoenix Stadium||Recap|
|4||October 4||Green Bay Packers||L 3-17||1-3||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|5||October 11||at New York Giants||L 27-30||1-4||MetLife Stadium||Recap|
|6||October 18||Baltimore Ravens||W 25-20||2-4||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|7||October 22||Seattle Seahawks||L 3-20||2-5||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|8||November 1||at St. Louis Rams||L 6-27||2-6||Edward Jones Dome||Recap|
|9||November 8||Atlanta Falcons||W 17-16||3-6||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|11||November 22||at Seattle Seahawks||L 13-29||3-7||CenturyLink Field||Recap|
|12||November 29||Arizona Cardinals||L 13-19||3-8||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|13||December 6||at Chicago Bears||W 26-20 (OT)||4-8||Soldier Field||Recap|
|14||December 13||at Cleveland Browns||L 10-24||4-9||FirstEnergy Stadium||Recap|
|15||December 20||Cincinnati Bengals||L 14-24||4-10||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
|16||December 27||at Detroit Lions||L 17-32||4-11||Ford Field||Recap|
|17||January 3||St. Louis Rams||W 19-16 (OT)||5-11||Levi's Stadium||Recap|
Note: Intra-division opponents are in bold text.
In the 49ers' first game with new head coach Jim Tomsula, the 49ers defeated the Minnesota Vikings 20-3 on Monday Night Football. In his first career start, Carlos Hyde rushed 26 times for 168 yards and two touchdowns. Hyde's 168 rushing yards were the most by a 49ers player since 2012, when Colin Kaepernick rushed for 181 against the Packers. Colin Kaepernick went 17 for 26 with 165 yards passing. The 49ers defense was stout, holding the Vikings to just three points and sacking Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater five times. Adrian Peterson, returning from suspension, rushed for only 31 yards on 10 carries. This game also marked the return of NaVorro Bowman, who missed all of the 2014 season with an injury. He had seven tackles and a sack in the season opener. In addition, the 49ers introduced black alternate uniforms. 
The 49ers' first road game of the year ended in a disaster. The 49ers defense had no answer for Ben Roethlisberger, who went 21 for 27,369 yards and three touchdown passes as the Steelers won 43-18. The Steelers took a commanding 29-3 halftime lead. Despite only scoring 18 points, the 49ers offense opened up in the second half, with Kaepernick leading the 49ers into the Steelers red zone four times, but only able to score one touchdown (along with a field goal and two turnovers on downs). The highlight for the 49ers was Kaepernick hitting wide receiver Torrey Smith for a 75-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter. The Steelers defense had a field day on Kaepernick, sacking him 5 times and making him lose a fumble.
With the loss, the 49ers fell to 1-1.
49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick became the first player since 1925 to throw two interceptions returned for touchdowns (pick sixes) to start a game. He had four interceptions in the game overall and the Cardinals thrashed the 49ers 47-7. This is the most points the Cardinals have ever scored against the 49ers. In the past two weeks, the 49ers were outscored 90-25.
With the loss, the 49ers dropped to 1-2.
Despite a good showing by the 49ers defense (holding the Packers to a season-low 17 points and sacking Aaron Rodgers 3 times), the 49ers offense struggled all game. It was another frustrating day for Colin Kaepernick, who consistently missed receivers and threw an interception. Throughout the game, he was sacked six times. In the last two weeks, Kaepernick had no touchdown passes and five interceptions with a quarterback rating of 12.7.
With yet another tough loss, the 49ers dropped to 1-3, and were outscored by a total of 110-48 in their first 4 games. By the end of week 4, the 49ers were last in the league in total points scored.
In one of the wildest games of the year, the 49ers lost a heartbreaker in the final minute. The 49ers offense, which struggled the previous two weeks and had just 6 points at halftime in this game, came alive and scored three second half touchdowns, including Carlos Hyde's 2-yard go-ahead touchdown run with 1:45 left on the clock to give the 49ers a 27-23 lead. But Giants quarterback Eli Manning led the Giants down the field and threw a 12-yard touchdown to Larry Donnell with 0:17 left in the game. The 49ers defense was shredded for an astonishing 525 yards by the Giants offense. There were five lead changes in the game, three of them in the final 4:29 of the fourth quarter.
With the loss, the 49ers fell to 1-4.
The 49ers met the Ravens for the first time since Super Bowl XLVII, in which the Ravens won 34-31. In the second quarter, Colin Kaepernick threw a 76-yard pass to ex-Raven Torrey Smith to extend San Francisco's lead to 13-3. In the fourth quarter, Kaepernick threw another touchdown, this time to Quinton Patton, for 11 yards to lead the 49ers 25-13. This was Patton's first NFL touchdown. With the win, the 49ers avenged their Super Bowl loss and broke their 4-game losing streak, and they improved to 2-4.
Much like last year's Thanksgiving Day matchup, the 49ers were unable to stop the defending NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks. Colin Kaepernick struggled all game long and he was sacked six times, much like Week 4 against Green Bay, where the 49ers were also only held to a field goal. With the 20-3 loss, the 49ers dropped to 2-5.
With the loss, San Francisco fell to 2-6.
This was Blaine Gabbert's first game as starting quarterback with the 49ers, replacing Colin Kaepernick. The 49ers were also without tight end Vernon Davis, who was traded to the Denver Broncos, after nine and a half seasons with the team.
With the win, the 49ers improved to 3-6.
Blaine Gabbert made his second start and remained starter for the rest of the season with Colin Kaepernick undergoing season-ending surgery on his left non-throwing shoulder.
After the loss, the 49ers fell to 3-7.
With the loss, the 49ers fell to 3-8 and were swept by the Cardinals for the first time since 2008.
The 49ers would trail 20-13 with less than a minute to go. Blaine Gabbert would run in a game-tying 44 yard touchdown to tie the game at 20. However, the Bears appeared to have the game won when they went down the field after a 74-yard kick return by Deonte Thompson. But when Robbie Gould came out to attempt a game-winning 36 yard field goal, the kick was wide left, resulting in overtime. In the overtime period, Gabbert would throw the game-winning 71-yard touchdown pass to Torrey Smith to win the game for San Francisco. This was San Francisco's first win in Chicago since the 1988 NFC Championship Game.
With the win, the 49ers went to 4-8.
With the loss, the 49ers were eliminated from the playoffs, and become the latest Super Bowl host team to fail to play the championship game on its own home field.
With the loss, the 49ers fell to 4-10.
With the loss, the 49ers fell to 4-11.
This was the final game between the San Francisco 49ers and the St. Louis Rams before the Rams' relocation to Los Angeles. With the win, the 49ers ended their season 5-11.
|St. Louis Rams||7||9||0||.438||4-2||6-6||280||330||L1|
|San Francisco 49ers||5||11||0||.313||1-5||4-8||238||387||W1|
|5[a]||Green Bay Packers||North||10||6||0||.625||3-3||7-5||.531||.450||L2|
|Did not qualify for the postseason|
|8[b]||St. Louis Rams||West||7||9||0||.438||4-2||6-6||.527||.482||L1|
|11[b]||New Orleans Saints||South||7||9||0||.438||3-3||5-7||.504||.402||W2|
|12[c]||New York Giants||East||6||10||0||.375||2-4||4-8||.500||.396||L3|
|14[c]||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||South||6||10||0||.375||3-3||5-7||.484||.406||L4|
|15||San Francisco 49ers||West||5||11||0||.313||1-5||4-8||.539||.463||W1|