Niner Noise already took a look at expectations for the five best players on the San Francisco 49ers roster heading into the 2016 season. But let’s flip the script and look at the five worst guys, according to Pro Football Focus’ 2015 grades, and see what expectations may be on the table this upcoming year.
Sadly, not every player on an NFL team’s 53-man roster can be a Pro Bowl-caliber contributor. And, for the San Francisco 49ers, there were far more less-than stellar players than bona fide playmakers in 2015.
The 49ers are coming off a 5-11 season, and four of those wins could have been skewed by just how close each one of those were. Niner Noise’s own Bryan Knowles pointed this out earlier.
Niner Noise also chronicled San Francisco’s five best players, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required), in 2015 and what the expectations may be this year. But let’s flip the script around and take a look at the five worst 49ers and what might be expected out of each in 2016.
One will notice a lot more red and not so much green when looking at PFF’s ratings of the Niners offense and defense. Red indicates a negative number, while green is in the positive. Positive is good, while red is bad.
PFF’s grading scale might not be perfect, but it’s a pretty good system when evaluating the overall on-field contributions, impacts and setbacks from players, units and groups.
According to PFF, San Francisco’s worst players in 2015 were:
- C/OG Marcus Martin, minus-45.6 overall
- T/OG Erik Pears, minus-30.7 overall
- ILB Michael Wilhoite, minus-16.5 overall
- OG Jordan Devey, minus-16.1 overall
- QB Colin Kaepernick, minus-15.6 overall
Former 49ers right guard Jordan Devey is no longer with the team, so there isn’t any reason to break down his level of expectations for San Francisco this season.
The next player on the list was rookie tight end Blake Bell (minus-10.7 overall), but since his role wasn’t all too crucial in 2015, let’s swap out Devey with veteran linebacker Ahmad Brooks (minus-10.2 overall) instead.
Starting with Brooks…
Next: OLB Ahmad Brooks