San Francisco 49ers: 10 Key Stats to Watch for the Upcoming 2016 Season
By Peter Panacy
No. 3: Run-Blocking Efficiency
2015 Offensive Line Run-Blocking Rank: 30th
According to Pro Football Focus’ Khaled Elsayed, the 49ers offensive line came in at a lowly 30th place in terms of overall run-blocking efficiency, and this unit finished 27th overall.
Just take a look at PFF’s final run-blocking grades for San Francisco’s Week 1 starters last year:
- LT Joe Staley — plus-7.5
- LG Alex Boone — minus-5.4
- C Marcus Martin — minus-33.8
- RG Jordan Devey — minus-5.2
- RT Erik Pears — minus-19.6
Aside from veteran left tackle Joe Staley, this was a pretty atrocious effort in an attempt to give running back Carlos Hyde a chance to finally break out of the shadow of former 49ers running back Frank Gore.
Head coach Chip Kelly may be viewed as a pass-first genius, but the Niners 2016 offense will feature plenty of the running game. It will likely remain the primary offensive weapon.
Let’s look at two of the major additions San Francisco made this season: guards Zane Beadles and Joshua Garnett.
Garnett, a run-mauling rookie lineman out of Stanford, should help here. And Beadles, known primarily for his success in a zone scheme — as PFF’s Jeff Deeney described — should fit into the same scheme Kelly will run.
These two moves should go a long way in ensuring the 49ers are, once again, effective on the ground. And this will go a long way in helping San Francisco turn its offense around this season.
Next: No. 2: Fourth-Quarter Passing Numbers