49ers offensive player-by-player review

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49ers offensive player-by-player review

Even in a game in which the 49ers were thoroughly beaten on this side of the ball, they had their chances.The 49ers gained a season-low 170 yards of total offense, and they allowed nine sacks for the first time since 1998. There were also plays to be made against the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday night, but the 49ers simply did not make them.And that began on the first snap of the game.As shown on the NFL Network's "Sound FX," 49ers quarterback Alex Smith failed to see wide-open tight end Delanie Walker down the field beyond the Ravens secondary."Got Delanie deep!" 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman said excitedly as the play developed.Instead, Smith rolled to his right and threw a 2-yard pass to Vernon Davis."God, we had a touchdown deep," Roman said to his colleagues in the coaches booth on a clip that aired on the show.On the sideline after that possession, Smith knew he missed an opportunity, too. "Hey, I had Delanie big on the first play," Smith said to 49ers quarterbacks coach Geep Chryst.The 49ers also had a 75-yard touchdown pass to Ted Ginn nullified in the second quarter because of a chop block. Frank Gore made a legal cut block on blitzing safety Bernard Pollard. But when guard Chilo Rachal got his hands on Pollard, that constituted an illegal high-low.Generally, the 49ers had no answers for the flood of blitzes and pressure packages the Ravens dialed up Thursday night. The 49ers set up some wide receiver screens, but they attempted only three passes to their running backs.
Here is the entire offensive player-by-player review from the 49ers' 16-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday:Quarterback
3-Scott Tolzien: Inactive (coaches' decision).
7-Colin Kaepernick: Did not play. (Follow on Twitter @Kaepernick7)
11-Alex Smith: He started and played every snap. Smith completed 15 of 24 passes for 140 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. He was sacked nine times for 44 yards, and he also gained 12 yards on two carries. . . He also had a 75-yard TD throw to Ted Ginn nullified by a chop block that had no bearing on the play. . . Smith was under pressure much of the night. He could've avoided a couple sacks by getting rid of the ball quicker. But he also avoided a couple sacks by escaping the pressure. . . He got away from defensive tackle Haloti Ngata and ended up completing 9-yard pass and a first down to Frank Gore. . . . Threw to the inside when Braylon Edwards was outside of Ravens cornerback Lardarius Webb, who intercepted the pass at the end of the first half. Jim Harbaugh said the day after the game that he wishes Smith had gone to Ginn on the other side. . . Escaped pressure off the right side to scramble left for 8 yards and a first down in the third quarter.Running backs
21-Frank Gore: Started at halfback and played 41 of the 49ers' 54 offensive snaps. . . . He carried 14 times for 39 yards and caught just one pass for 9 yards. . . Got a piece of Ngata to allow Smith to get the ball to Vernon Davis on a third-and-2 for 20 yards. . . He was kept in to block on most of the pass plays, and his blitz pickup was generally very good, as usual. The Ravens outschemed the 49ers on one play in which Gore was responsible for blitzing linebacker Jameel McClain off the right side. But when the Ravens disguised the pressure, defensive tackle Cory Redding came through untouched past guard Chilo Rachal. Gore ultimately had to block two pass-rushers on that play, and didn't get either.
24-Anthony Dixon: He did not see any action on offense. . . . He had one tackle on special teams. (Follow on Twitter @Boobie24Dixon)
32-Kendall Hunter: He did not start, but saw 12 snaps in the game at halfback, including the final seven of the game when the 49ers were in no-huddle mode . . . He gained 14 yards on four rushes. . . He also caught one pass for 13 yards. . . Lined up on the left side of the formation, came across to get enough to Terrell Suggs in blitz pickup to provide Smith with time he needed for 18-yard pass to Michael Crabtree on a third-and-17.
44-Moran Norris: Started at fullback with Bruce Miller inactive and played 16 snaps in the game, including all of the 49ers' best run plays. . . . It was his first game action since sustaining a broken left fibula in a Week 2 loss against Dallas. . . He got a block on outside linebacker Paul Kruger to allow Ginn to get to the outside on an end around for 9 yards. . . . Block on Jarret Johnson sent him to the ground, allowing Hunter to gain 9 yards on his first carry of the game. . . . Good block on McClain to enable Gore to pick up 9 yards in third quarter.
49-Bruce Miller: Inactive for the game due to a concussion he sustained last Sunday against Arizona. He said he would've been able to play if the game were on a Sunday and not a Thursday. (Follow on Twitter @bmiller_49)
90-Isaac Sopoaga: He did not play any snaps of offense.Wide receivers
10-Kyle Williams: He saw just 15 snaps of offense. . . Did not have any receptions. . . Tried and failed to make one-handed catch on a swing pass when he likely could've gotten both hands on the ball. (Follow on Twitter @KyleWilliams_10)
15-Michael Crabtree: Started at flanker and caught six passes for 54 yards. . . He was on the field for 39 snaps in the game. . . Made a nice leaping catch against Webb for an 18-yard gain on third and 17 to pick up a first down on opening drive of second half. . . . Knocked down Webb with a block on a receiver screen, which allowed Ginn to gain 9 yards in third quarter. (Follow on Twitter @KingCrab15)
17-Braylon Edwards: He played half of the team's snaps, as he shared playing time with Ted Ginn. . . Three passes were directed his way. Edwards caught one pass for 5 yards, as the 49ers converted a fourth-down play on the final drive. . . Had what Smith called a "miscommunication" at the end of the first half on an interception. Regardless, Edwards could've done a better job of turning into a defender and preventing Webb's interception. (Follow on Twitter @OfficialBraylon)
18-Brett Swain: Inactive (coaches' decision).
19-Ted Ginn: He played 27 of the team's 54 snaps. . . . Made a nice leaping catch of a long ball in the second quarter. But the 75-yard catch and run was nullified by a chop block. . . He caught two passes for 21 yards. . . . Dropped simple pass that would've been a first down on a fourth-down play to end final 49ers drive. . . . Averaged 31 yards on three kickoff returns. Had three fair-catches on punts.Tight ends
46-Delanie Walker: Started as part of a two-tight end formation. . . He played 33 snaps in the game but did not have a pass thrown his way. . . Called for false start in second quarter. . . . Good block on Johnson as Gore picked up 5 yards to open second half. . . He had one tackle on special teams. (Follow on Twitter @Dwalk46)
81-Justin Peelle: He played just three snaps in the game.
85-Vernon Davis: He started and played every offensive snap. . . Davis caught four passes for 38 yards. . . . He got a step on McClain to make catch and turn up the sideline for 20 yards on a third-and-2 in the first quarter. . . . Down block on Cory Redding to allow Gore to pick up 3 yards on a second-and-1 in the first quarter. . . . Late in first half, he didn't go out of bounds at end of 7-yard gain at the Baltimore 40, and the clock kept running inside of a minute. . . . Outside linebacker Terrell Suggs worked against him and picked up the Ravens' ninth sack of the game. (Follow on Twitter @VernonDavis85)Offensive linemen
59-Jonathan Goodwin: Started at center and played every snap. . . Haloti Ngata worked him into a clump of bodies toward the left side of the line. Ngata was then able to shed Goodwin to get to Smith for a 5-yard sack in the first quarter. . . Got out front to block McClain for a Gore pickup for 6 yards in first quarter. (Follow on Twitter @Jgoody59)
62-Chilo Rachal: He did not start, but he played 36 snaps in the game at right guard when Adam Snyder had to leave with a hamstring injury. . . When he got his hands on blitzing safety Bernard Pollard while Gore was upending him in pass protection, it constituted a chop block. That penalty nullified the 49ers' biggest play of the game: a 75-yard Smith-to-Ginn touchdown pass. . . On next play, Ngata got past him to stop Gore for 1-yard loss. . . . Rachal was also confused on a second-quarter blitz when his attention was diverted by defensive tackle Pernell McPhee, who faked a blitz and dropped into coverage as Redding blew past him from the outside.
67-Daniel Kilgore: Inactive (coaches' decision).
68-Adam Snyder: Started at right guard and sustained left hamstring injury on second series of the game. He re-entered and played 18 snaps total in the game before sitting out the rest of the evening. The 49ers will continue to evaluate his status for Sunday's game against the St. Louis Rams. . . . Redding got past him to put hit on Smith in first quarter to force incomplete pass. . . . Allowed pressure to Ngata on play Smith got away and found Gore for 9-yard completion. . . . McClain got past him cleanly with a spin move for a first-quarter sack. . . He also gave up pressure to McPhee that blew up a play, resulting in a sack by Ngata. . . Unable to move after getting beaten several times, the 49ers removed him from the lineup. (Follow on Twitter @ASnyds68)
74-Joe Staley: Started at left tackle and played every snap. . . Suggs got around him to force Smith to step up, where he was sacked by McClain. . . . His man got a sack in the second quarter through no fault of his. He mirrored Redding up the field for nearly 4 seconds, but Smith stepped up to try to buy more time and moved into Redding's path for a sack. (Follow on Twitter @jstaley74)
75-Alex Boone: He did not play at all on offense, as the 49ers went away from using extra linemen as blockers for this game.
76-Anthony Davis: Started at right tackle and played every snap. . . He had his most difficult game of the season after a string of outstanding performances. . . . Redding held him up and clogged running lane in third quarter, Gore slipped as he changed direction for a 1-yard loss. . . . On next play, failed to switch off on Ngata, who shoved past him for a sack of Smith. . . Drove McPhee off line of scrimmage as Gore picked up 9 yards in third quarter. . . . Suggs beat him to the outside for a 10-yard sack in the third quarter. . . . Suggs got around him again and chased down Smith for the sack and forced fumble in the fourth quarter. . . . Kruger beat him to put pressure on Smith to force intentional grounding penalty in fourth quarter. (Follow on Twitter @AnthonyDavis76)
77-Mike Iupati: Started at left guard and played every snap of offense. . . . On a day in which the entire offensive line struggled, Iupati might have struggled on fewer snaps than any of his linemates. . . McPhee used a swim move to get past him and pressure Smith on the play that resulted in an intentional grounding on final drive.
78-Mike Person: Inactive (coaches' decision).

Eric Reid embracing new role with 49ers: 'I was made for this position'

Eric Reid embracing new role with 49ers: 'I was made for this position'

SANTA CLARA – Despite recording seven interceptions in his first two seasons and being named to the Pro Bowl as a rookie, Eric Reid said he believes he is now in a role that best fits his skillset.

Whereas in the past, the 49ers’ safety positions were considered interchangeable, there is a clear delineation this season under first-year defensive coordinator Robert Saleh.

“Even dating back to college, this is the first time there’s a distinct strong (safety) and a distinct free (safety),” Reid said. “I’ve been used to the interchangeability type of role.

“(In) some situations, certain calls where there’s a motion, we might flip. There are a couple situations where I might be in the post in the free-safety role, but it’s not nearly as much as it has been in the past.”

Reid, who is listed at 6 foot 1, 213 pounds, said he is excited to be stationed closer to the line of scrimmage for run support while free safety Jimmie Ward patrols the deep middle of the field.

The 49ers offseason program concluded Wednesday, and Reid found himself in the middle of the action with an interception on a short Brian Hoyer pass over the middle. While he will still be counted upon for coverage, his biggest impact could come to assist a run defense that last season ranked among the worst in NFL history.

“I love it, being around the ball more,” Reid said. “I anticipate making more tackles, hopefully making more plays. I feel like I was made for this position with my body type, being a bigger safety. I’m excited about this year.

“I feel like I’m using what God has blessed me with, more, which is my size and being in the box in the run game. In the past, I felt like I could do more. And being in the post, I can’t use my size as much when it comes to the run game.”

After producing seven interceptions in his first two seasons, Reid recorded just one interception in 26 games over the past two seasons.

As a first-round pick in 2013, the 49ers picked up the fifth-year option this season for $5.676 million. He is scheduled for unrestricted free agency at the conclusion of the season. Reid said the 49ers have not spoken to his representation about a long-term extension. That will come, he believes, if he lives up to his end of the bargain in his new, streamlined role.

“I look at it from a business standpoint,” Reid said. “I majored in business. They have me under contract. They don’t have any reason to talk to right now. I imagine if I play well in the first half of the season, they’ll reach out to me. Maybe they’ll reach out to me before training camp, I don’t know. It’s whatever route they decide to take. It’s a business. I’ll treat it as a business. I have a job to do, so I’ll do it.”

 

Mike Shanahan's official role with 49ers: Father of head coach

Mike Shanahan's official role with 49ers: Father of head coach

SANTA CLARA – Kyle Shanahan always wanted to coach football with his father. But, first, he knew he had to prove himself without any boost from his well-known dad.

Once the son established himself as one of the NFL’s respected offensive minds, the Shanahans teamed up for four up-but-mostly-down seasons with Washington.

Mike, the two-time Super Bowl-winning head coach, hired his son to serve as his top offensive assistant in 2010.

“I thought we saw football similar, but we quickly realized after a few weeks that we saw it differently,” Kyle Shanahan told NBC Sports Bay Area in February. “We grew together. He gave me a lot of leeway while I was there. It was fun to try a bunch of different things, having to even incorporate the zone read when we got Robert (Griffin).

“We did our deal in Washington, and I wouldn’t take that back for the world, but that was pretty much the end of it.”

Kyle Shanahan broke into the coaching ranks under Karl Dorrell at UCLA. He moved onto the NFL to work with Jon Gruden on the staff of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Gary Kubiak with the Houston Texans. But nothing prepared him for the scrutiny he would face as offensive coordinator under his father.

Kyle Shanahan adjusted the Washington offense to take advantage of Griffin’s skills as a dual-threat quarterback as a rookie 2012. The club qualified for the playoffs with a 10-6 record.

But things blew up the following season as the Mike Shanahan-Griffin relationship soured. Shanahan and eight assistant coaches, including Kyle, were fired the morning after Washington’s 3-13 season concluded.

Mike Shanahan has remained out of coaching, though he was a finalist for the 49ers’ head-coaching job after the 2015 season. The 49ers hired Chip Kelly.

Kyle Shanahan rebuilt his career with one season as offensive coordinator with the Cleveland Browns and two successful seasons with the Atlanta Falcons to enable him to become CEO Jed York’s choice to replace Kelly.

There is no official role for Mike Shanahan, 64, on his son’s staff with the 49ers. But the father has attended several of the team’s practices this offseason, including both days of the 49ers’ mandatory minicamp this week. Mike has been issued his own iPad that gives him access to the 49ers playbook and coach's film. He will likely visit for an extended stay during training camp. But Kyle said he believes his dad will mostly remain home -- only a phone call away -- during the regular season.

“He’s enjoying life right now,” said Kyle, 37. “He’s got a pretty good deal in Denver, where he lives. He can help me out in other ways anyways without having to be here every day.”

Mike Shanahan does not need to be in the building every day to counsel and have influence on his son as he tries to navigate his first season as the head coach while also maintaining the responsibilities of running the team’s offense.

“You’re going 1,000 miles an hour,” Kyle Shanahan said. “Sometimes to see everything you’ve got to really slow things down and take your time to look at stuff and you don’t always have that time as a head coach.

“It’s nice when someone you know who thinks similar to you has a similar background and he just sits in a room all day and watches stuff. He doesn’t have any other responsibilities. He can see some things that I’m not always seeing and just to bring things to light that maybe I missed or other people have missed.”

Mike Shanahan was a successful NFL offensive coordinator for seven seasons. He won a Super Bowl on George Seifert’s staff with the 49ers in January 1995. His dad believes his time around the 49ers has a lasting impact.

“When I was with San Francisco, Kyle was at the 49ers training camps in Rocklin,” Mike Shanahan told Fangirl Sports Network. “He stayed with me at camp and we talked about football every night.

“He had the opportunity to experience an organization that had won four Super Bowls in nine years. He also had the opportunity to be around some great people and leaders. He still tells stories and talks about people like Steve Young, Joe Montana, Harris Barton, Tom Rathman, Jerry Rice, John Taylor, Deion Sanders, and many others. What a great experience to see how these men handled themselves on and off the field.”

The Denver Broncos hired him to become head coach shortly after the 49ers’ 49-26 victory over the San Diego Chargers in Super Bowl XXIX. Shanahan went on to win two Super Bowls in his 14 seasons with the Broncos.

Kyle Shanahan was a wide receiver at Duke before finishing college at Texas, where he caught 14 passes for 127 yards in two seasons. He figured he would have a career in football and it would not be as a player.

“I’ve wanted to coach my whole life,” Kyle Shanahan said. “This is all I’ve known, just growing up around football. It’s almost all I’ve been into, too. Since I was little, it’s distracted me from everything I’ve done, especially school. I always tried to tell my mom, ‘Just be patient, it’ll play out for us in the long run.’ Fortunately, it did.

“Once I realized my genes were a little bit better as a coach than as a player, I pretty much locked into that – and that was about halfway through college. I haven’t looked back.”

During his short time with the 49ers, players on both sides of the ball have expressed amazement at how knowledgeable Kyle Shanahan is about the game of football. His dad told Fangirl Sports Network to succeed as a head coach he must always be dedicated to stuyding, learning and teaching the sport.

“He loves the game and knows it inside and out,” Mike Shanahan said. “My advice to him is to never lose the drive to study the game as he’s done over the last 13 years. To stay in the NFL as a head coach and have success for any length of time, you must never lose your drive to teach and stay abreast of what the top teams are doing every year: offense, defense, special teams. You must be able to coach all positions to really understand the whole game.”

Former 49ers president Carmen Policy said he remembers young Kyle serving as a ball boy during 49ers training camp in the early 1990s. Policy, who remains close to Mike Shanahan, has followed Kyle’s rise in the coaching ranks while playfully questioning the sanity of the family business.

Said Policy: “I used to tease Mike, ‘What kind of father are you to let your kid go into coaching?’ I said, ‘You should be charged with dereliction of parental duty.’ And he’d laugh and say, ‘Yeah, I tried talking to him and then my wife tried talking to him, but that’s his passion, and that’s what he wants to do, so I’m not going to dissuade him from it.’

“And, then, look at what happened. Here he is. He’s the head coach of the 49ers, and that’s just incredible.”