49ers review: Offensive player-by-player

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49ers review: Offensive player-by-player

Here is the entire offensive player-by-player review from the 49ers' 20-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday night:

49ERS REVIEW: Defensive player-by-player
Quarterback
3-Scott Tolzien: Inactive (coaches' decision).
7-Colin Kaepernick: Did not play. (Follow on Twitter @Kaepernick7)
11-Alex Smith: He completed 18 of 31 passes for 187 yards with one touchdown and no interception. He also was not sacked. . . He made some nice touch passes to Vernon Davis, and he misfired on a couple attempts outside the numbers. . . . Receiver Kyle Williams wasn't thinking along with Smith in the end zone when he found a pocket but did not remain there. Smith threw to where he was, while Williams continued to run. The pass went incomplete. On next play, Smith tried to throw around blitzing safety Troy Polamalu and the ball was wide to Frank Gore for an incompletion, as the 49ers settled for a first-drive field goal. . . . Showed his athleticism to turn upfield and gain 14 yards in the second quarter. . . Made a couple nice touch passes to Davis on 49ers' first third-quarter TD drive.
Running backs
21-Frank Gore: He started at running back, and played 49 of the 49ers' 61 offensive plays. He gained 65 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries. . . . Dropped a pass out of the backfield on the first drive. . . Missed Cameron Heyward in blitz pickup as Smith was rushed into incompletion on first drive. . . . Dropped another pass on third-and-7, though it was unlikely he would've picked up first down with defensive lineman Brett Keisel standing between him and the sticks . . . Called for chop block on defensive lineman Ziggy Hood, as center Jonathan Goodwin had his left hand on Hood as Gore went low to block Hood. Did not play the final nine minutes after scoring on 5-yard TD.
24-Anthony Dixon: Entered game at running back on goal line and sold play-fake, enabling Davis to get open for 1-yard TD pass in third quarter. . . . Played five more snaps later in the game and gained 12 yards on five rushes. (Follow on Twitter @Boobie24Dixon)
32-Kendall Hunter: Carried twice for just 2 yards, as he saw a significant decrease in play time from a week earlier. Hunter played just six snaps from scrimmage. Showed patience on screen pass to allow things to set up. He then turned it on for a 27-yard gain. He had two receptions for 24 yards.
44-Moran Norris: Inactive (coaches decision).
49-Bruce Miller: Started at fullback and played 28 snaps. He got a rare rushing attempt and gained 3 yards and a first down. . . . Had block on cornerback William Gay to create lane for Gore to pick up 13 yards on first drive. . . Called for false start on first play of second half. . . . Made block on Farrior on Gore's 5-yard TD run. (Follow on Twitter @bmiller_49)
90-Isaac Sopoaga: He did not play any on offense.Wide receivers
10-Kyle Williams: Began the game as the 49ers' No. 3 receiver, and took over for injured Ted Ginn in the second half. . . He played 28 snaps in the game and finished with four catches for 33 yards. . . Ran good route against cornerback Keenan Lewis to get open for 8-yard gain on third-and-5 to keep first drive alive. . . . Wasn't thinking along with Smith in the end zone when he found a pocket but did not remain there. Smith threw to where he was, while Williams did not break off his route. The pass went incomplete and the 49ers settled for a first-drive field goal. . . . Did another good job of knowing where the sticks were to pick up 10 yards on a third-and-8. (Follow on Twitter @KyleWilliams_10)
15-Michael Crabtree: Started and played 42 snaps. He had four catches for 35 yards, as seven passes were thrown his way. . . Working out of the slot, he caught a 12-yard pass on a third-and-10 on the opening drive. . . . Shielded off cornerback Ike Taylor on Gore's 5-yard TD run. (Follow on Twitter @KingCrab15)
17-Braylon Edwards: Inactive (coaches' decision, but was listed as questionable, knee, on injury report last week). (Follow on Twitter @OfficialBraylon)
18-Brett Swain: Played 12 snaps from offense, mostly after Ted Ginn was injured. He caught his first pass as a member of the 49ers -- a 9-yard reception in the fourth quarter. Lewis broke up a third-down slant pass to him in third quarter.
19-Ted Ginn: He gained 6 yards and a first down with a fly sweep on the first drive of the game.. . . Made nice leaping catch for a 14-yard gain in second quarter. . . Sustained ankle sprain on kickoff to open second half and did not return. The injury is not to keep Ginn out of action for long.Tight ends
46-Delanie Walker: Started as part of a two-TE formation and played 38 snaps. He went his fifth game in a row without a reception, but made a contribution in other areas. . . He upended blitzing inside linebacker Lawrence Timmons with a cut block that enabled Gore to pick up 5 yards and a first down on the opening drive. On next play, he wiped out safety Troy Polamalu to allow Gore to get to the outside for 13 yards. . . . Called for holding in third quarter. (Follow on Twitter @Dwalk46)
81-Justin Peelle: Entered as the No. 3 tight end and played three snaps from scrimmage.
85-Vernon Davis: Started at tight end and played every snap until the final three plays. He caught six passes for 72 yards and a touchdown. . . . Working against cornerback Cortez Allen, he struggled forward for a couple extra yards when he appeared to be tackled. The extra effort picked up a first down on a third-and-7 on 49ers' second drive. . . . Got open down the field but just as he got his hands on the pass, cornerback Ryan Clark made a nice play to get his shoulder on it and dislodge it from Davis' grasp. . . . Took over on 49ers' TD drive after Steelers cut lead to 6-3. Outran linebacker James Farrior down the field for a 31-yard gain. Made a nice over-the-shoulder catch against Timmons for 21-yard gain to the 1. And then started off blocking LaMarr Woodley then slipped unseen into end zone to catch 1-yard TD pass from Smith to give 49ers a 13-3 lead. (Follow on Twitter @VernonDavis85)Offensive linemen
59-Jonathan Goodwin: Started and played every snap at center. Called for false start in second quarter. . . Started off on Steelers nose tackle Casey Hampton, then shifted over to pick up Ziggy Hood to allow Smith time to get the ball to Vernon Davis on 31-yard pass in third quarter. . . . Made block to control Hampton on Gore's 5-yard TD run. (Follow on Twitter @Jgoody59)
62-Chilo Rachal: Reported as eligible in second quarter and lined up at tight end on the right side.
67-Daniel Kilgore: Suited up for the first time in his career, and played a snap as a tight end on a run play that gained Anthony Dixon 3 yards.
68-Adam Snyder: Started at right guard and played every snap. . . . He pulled and made block on James Farrior to help Gore pick up 13 yards on opening drive. . . . Got outside to run interference for Hunter, giving Timmons a shove to allow Hunter to pick up 27 yards on a screen pass. . . Pulled and had kickout block on Timmons on Gore's TD run. (Follow on Twitter @ASnyds68)
74-Joe Staley: Started at left tackle after getting cleared to return to action after sustaining a concussion last week. . . He left the game with 9 minutes remaining after sustaining a left leg contusion. . . . Handled outside linebacker Jason Worilds one-on-one on a third-and-10 in which the 49ers gained 12 yards on opening drive. . . . Good block on Keisel to open way for Gore to gain 6 yards on a second-and-1 play. . . . Took care of Worilds to give Smith time to hit Davis on 31-yard gain. . . .Had a take-down block on Keisel on Gore's 5-yard TD run. (Follow on Twitter @jstaley74)
75-Alex Boone: Entered the game at left tackle, with Staley eligible on a second-quarter play. He remained in for the next snap and had block on Worilds on play in which Gore picked up 3 yards. . . . Boone played the final three drives after Staley left with an injury.
76-Anthony Davis: Started at right tackle, and had his second good game in a row. . . . Did a good job of handling outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley, who eventually left the game with an aggravation of a hamstring injury. (Follow on Twitter @AnthonyDavis76)
77-Mike Iupati: Started at left guard and played every snap. . . . Made block on Brett Keisel to enable Gore to pick up 5 yards and a first down on opening drive. . . Made block on linebacker Larry Foote to allow Gore to pick up 6 yards. . . Handled Foote on Gore's 5-yard TD run.
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.”