SF 49ers: 4 tweaks Kyle Shanahan can make to roster after loss vs. Cardinals
By Peter Panacy
No. 3: Dante Pettis can be bumped back down SF 49ers depth chart
Amid a context when the Niners were without wide receivers Deebo Samuel (foot) and Brandon Aiyuk (hamstring), third-year pro Dante Pettis ended up getting the start alongside Kendrick Bourne.
Bourne did enough to show why he still has Kyle Shanahan’s respect, hauling in two targets and being the go-to option on San Francisco’s final offensive drive of the game in the red zone.
Pettis, meanwhile, was targeted once and was essentially a non-factor otherwise.
Jimmy Garoppolo tried to hit Pettis deep in the second quarter, throwing deep down the field from the Cardinals 37-yard line. While the ball was a bit overthrown, Pettis appeared to have slowed up on the route and didn’t flash that sense of urgency Shanahan wanted him to display last season and was apparently there during training camp last month.
As such, Pettis could easily be back in Shanahan’s proverbial doghouse.
After losing depth wide receiver Richie James to injury later in the game, Shanahan might consider promoting other wideouts from the practice squad, perhaps veteran receiver Kevin White or maybe even the rookie, Jauan Jennings, if for no other reason than to pressure Pettis.
If anything, Pettis shouldn’t be a starter for San Francisco from this point onward regardless of the circumstances.