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Failing at the finish in finale

Hearst's 4th-quarter fumbles allow Rams to rally

Observations, impressions and contemplations after the 49ers took a 17-point lead into the final 12 minutes Monday night only to come away with a 31-20 loss to the St. Louis Rams to conclude the regular season:

--- Just like that, burgeoning postseason momentum becomes stumbling to the finish line. --- Allowing 28 fourth-quarter points cannot exactly be considered charging into the playoffs. --- But building a 20-3 lead early in that fourth quarter can be. --- The Niners sure looked ready for the NFL's second season before that late collapse. --- The 49ers we hope to see in the playoffs are the ones that...

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