There wasn’t much to report after the San Francisco 49ers were beat down by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-17. A defense that allowed the Bucs to rush for 249 yards, it’s no wonder the 49ers keep losing week in and week out. Time and time again, it’s the defensive line that gets completely erased from plays. Whether that’s scheme, players, or combination of the two, there is no excuse for this type of porous play down in the trenches.
When 49ers GM Trent Baalke invested back-to-back first-round picks in DE Arik Armstead (No. 17) and DE DeForest Buckner (No. 7) he did not envision the team boasting the last ranked rush defense in the NFL. But that’s exactly what happened. Baalke rolled the dice on his ‘rare breeds’ with high potential– only to see the experiment fail up to this point.
Too many times, Buckner gets outmuscled at the point of attack while being unable to disengage from his blocks in time while Armstead continues to be a liability in run support.
- OLB Aaron Lynch
Analysis: The 49ers needed a sound pass-rush and Lynch delivered, applying consistent pressure throughout the game. An edge-setter’s responsibility is to maintain outside containment while collapsing the pocket when the situation arises. Lynch did that and more as he finished the game with 3 tackles, 1.0 sack, and two quarterback hits.
- RB Shaun Draughn
Analysis: Draughn made a nice 17-yard touchdown catch as he used the sideline to his advantage. A nice touch-pass from Kaepernick, Draughn ensured not only the catch was made but that his two feet were inbounds. Draughn was targeted seven times while finishing the game with 5 catches for 37 yards and 1 touchdown.
- RB DuJuan Harris
Analysis: The diminutive yet shifty running back made the most of his touches despite what the numbers may indicated. Too many times, the offensive line was unable to open running lanes for Harris to run through, which made life difficult for Harris. However, his lateral quickness and elusiveness were evident, as he had to juke his way just to fight his way back toward the line of scrimmage. Stats don’t tell the whole story and Harris continues to shine despite only racking up 39 yards on 11 carries.
- Wide Receivers
Analysis: The 49ers wide receivers were covered up the entire game. When your team’s leading receiver on the day is WR Torrey Smith who finished with 1 catch for 17 yards, you’re in trouble.
- QB Colin Kaepernick
Analysis: Kaepernick continues to stare down his receivers which is why he threw another interception along the Bucs sideline. A play that saw Kaepernick try to thread the needle, it didn’t work as S Bradley McDougald benefitied from the poorly thrown pass. Kaepernick would finish completing 16 of 34 passes for 143 yards and 1 touchdown while fumbling two times.
- 49ers Offensive Line
Analysis: OT Trent Brown was called for an illegal formation penalty lining up in the backfield while the unit as a whole paved the way to a lowly 76 rushing yards by their running backs. Not going to win in the NFL.
- WR Aaron Burbridge makes Pee Wee Mistake
Analysis: WR/PR Jeremy Kerley called for a ‘fair catch.’ Burbridge didn’t hear it. Result? Miscommunication leading Burbridge to fumble the ball as Kerley tried to field the punt cleanly. Unacceptable.
- 49ers allow 249 rushing yards
Analysis: The 49ers defensive front seven continues to get torched week in and week out. The way the d-line is angling their blocks puts them at a disadvantage, as their backers behind them don’t have the read-and-react skills to make plays behind them. Combine that with Buckner and Armstead getting completely wiped out of plays more times than not and you have a recipe for disaster.
- Missed Tackles are not the business. Below is the breakdown from the game:
NT Mike Purcell
ILB Gerald Hodges (2)
OLB Ahmad Brooks
OLB Aaron Lynch
CB Rashard Robinson
CB Tramaine Brock