49ers vs. Cardinals: Report Cards and Game Grades For Jimmie Ward, Eric Reid, Tramaine Brock and Antoine Bethea

Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald #11 of the Arizona Cardinals is upended by cornerback Jimmie Ward #25 of the San Francisco 49ers and outside linebacker Eli Harold #58 during the second quarter of the NFL football game at University of Phoenix Stadium on November 13, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald #11 of the Arizona Cardinals is upended by cornerback Jimmie Ward #25 of the San Francisco 49ers and outside linebacker Eli Harold #58 during the second quarter of the NFL football game at University of Phoenix Stadium on November 13, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

DB Jimmie Ward:

Analysis: On the surface, one would think DB Jimmie Ward pieced together a nice game Week 10. A defensive back who was targeted 10 times while only yielding five catches for a total of 52 yards, that’s an All-Pro performance, especially going up against future Hall of Fame WR Larry Fitzgerald. To add icing on the cake, Ward came up with three huge pass break-ups driving through the receiver perfectly!


But the numbers don’t tell the whole story. Ward was the most penalized 49ers defensive back during the game which adversely hurt the team. Three penalties in all, the first was a huge defensive pass-interference call on WR J.J. Nelson downfield resulting in a 38-yard spot-foul. Ward would later be called for two defensive holding penalties totaling 10 yards in which one resulted in an automatic first-down.  

49ers DC Jim O’Neil openly admitted that Ward needs to clean up those mishaps. 

“Where you don’t want to get penalties is third-and-long,” Coach O’Neil said. “We had a chance in that game on a third-and-long play [3rd & 5 at AZ 9-yard line] where Jimmie [Ward] had a defensive holding penalty and we gave them a first down. We would have been off the field and probably gave our offense the ball at the 50-yard line or in plus territory.” 

Pass Grade: +5.0  

Run Grade: +10.0

Overall: +5.5/10.0   

In addition, four of those five catches Ward allowed were first-downs. Sure, Ward gave up only 52 yards in coverage, but we take into account the full-body of work which includes penalties (+48), first-downs allowed (4), and target/completion ratio (5/10). 

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FS Eric Reid:

Analysis: If it wasn’t for Reid’s tipped interception, he would be on the negative side of our grading system. But, interceptions are game-changing plays, and as a result, Reid gets a pass Week 10. However, that’s where the positive reinforcement stops.

Pass Grade: +5.0

Run Grade: +8.0

Overall: +6.5/10.0

Reid was targeted five times in coverage while allowing two catches for 56 yards- good for a 28.0 yards per catch average. Yikes! Add in a crucial 13-yard pass-interference call in the end zone, and you have a bad day for Reid versus the pass. Reid would finish the game with one interception, one pass break-up, one missed tackle, while yielding 69 yards of field-position via the air on just three plays. 

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CB Tramaine Brock:

Analysis: The Belhaven product was by far the 49ers worst starting defensive back Week 10. T-Brock was targeted nine times while yielding six catches for 89 yards (14.8 average) via the air.

Pass Grade: -23.0

Run Grade: +8.0 

Overall: -7.5/10.0

Five of those catches resulted in first-downs, which paced the team. In addition, T-Brock was called for a 9-yard pass-interference penalty giving up 98 yards of field-position on the day despite having one pass break-up. He also had a missed tackle.

SS Antoine Bethea

Analysis: The 49ers strong safety made a huge fumble recovery early on, but did little to help the team after that. Bethea was targeted three times via the air with all three being catches. In all, Bethea allowed three catches (two resulting in 1st downs) for 59 yards (19.6 average). 

Pass Grade: -5.0

Run Grade: +8.0 

Overall: +1.5/10

BENCH

CB Keith Reaser

Analysis: Reaser came out of the game with mixed reviews. He forced a fumble and finished the game with two pass break-ups (2nd most on team). He was also targeted five times yielding three catches for 41 yards (13.6 average), allowed two first-downs, all while leading the team with three missed tackles.

Pass Grade: +2.0

Run Grade: +4.0

Overall: +3.0/10

Notes: SS Jaquiski Tartt was targeted one time but fortunately for him the ball was dropped leading to Reid INT. Third-year CB Dontae Johnson was targeted one time yielding one catch for 9 yards. 

Ryan is the Founder/CEO of NinerFans.com, 49ers Beat Writer, Live Game Day Correspondent for Bleacher Report and member of Pro Football Writers of America. Born and raised in San Jose, he also graduated from San Diego State University. His work has been featured on NFL Network, 95.7 The Game, National Football Post, Sports Illustrated, FanSided Network, ESPN Radio, CBS Sports 810, and NBC Bay Area News. For more information, please contact him via email at ryan@NinerFans.com or call him at (408) 622-0996.

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