What’s the Real Problem with the 49ers?
Unfortunately, we did not get the upset alert we were all hoping for this past Sunday in Arizona. However, it was so good to see Trey lance out there and I thought he played a really nice game for it being his first start in a tough road atmosphere. The offense didn’t put up many points, but in multiple drives, Trey was able to move the ball right down the field. And the defense - my goodness - played one hell of a game! That unit looks like a top 10 unit and should give all 49er fans a ton of confidence going forward. Now, let’s get to the issue on this team and this won’t be a popular sentiment but let’s face it right now. The problem is Kyle Shanahan. Let me explain…
Besides Week 1, his play calling this year has been subpar at best. With a rookie QB making his first start, I expected him to have pulled out all the stops. Great run designs, trick plays, play action taking shots deep. We got none of that! Mitchell looked good running the ball and should have had at least 18 carries in that game instead of just 9. Trey Lance getting 16 carries is far too high. Zone options and running when the pass isn’t there is great but how many QB power runs are we going to get in a game? We didn’t draft him to be Cam Newton. As far as the passing game goes my biggest issue is the damn personnel we put on the field. Now, officially Ayuik played more snaps than Sanu and Benjamin, but it seemed he wasn’t out there during a lot of big plays – be it 3rd downs or early in drives. I don’t understand how we go from designing the whole offense around Ayuik last year, him excelling with backup QBs, to completely removing him from the game plan. Makes no sense and looks bad on all fronts because we spent a 1st round pick on this guy and within 1 year, he’s already riding the bench? Come on Shanahan. Not to mention he made two phenomenal catches on 3rd down both resulting in a first down. We also only saw Trent Sherfield for 9 snaps. 9 snaps? Are you kidding? We’re giving old man Sanu and terrible Travis Benjamin more snaps than this guy? I’m shocked those two are even on an NFL roster. We even put in Benjamin on key running downs and no surprise, the guy who weighs 82 pounds got multiple holding penalties. Just terrible strategy. And let’s not forget the great chemistry Lance and Sherfield had in the preseason. Every week Sherfield was catching a bomb from Lance so why not continue this dynamic duo. What shocked me the most was zero designed big throws down the field. I thought that was a big reason why we drafted Lance in the first place. His only long pass of the day was to Juszczyk on a scramble drill. I like Juszczyk as much as the next 49er fan but the number of times he lined up out wide as a WR over Ayuik and Sherfield was far too many. He set up Trey to fail which was very disappointing as we had a real chance to beat a very good team in AZ.
Hopefully Shanahan snaps out of whatever he is going through and learns to play his best players again, sometimes it’s just that easy. Alright, the Shanahan vent session is over, and hopefully after the bye, the 49ers get back to their winning ways because we have the roster to do it.