Analysis of SF 49ers rookie Brandon Aiyuk and his breakout performance vs. the NY Giants in Week 3 where he gained 101 yards from scrimmage.
A hamstring injury late in training camp meant Aiyuk missed the Niners’ Week 1 matchup, however, Aiyuk made his debut the following week against the New York Jets where he had just two catches on three targets for 21 yards. SF 49ers head coach and offensive genius Kyle Shanahan said Aiyuk was impressive but made some rookie mistakes in the Week 2 matchup.
Aiyuk was involved in the running game early and often against the New York Giants in Week 3, however. And his role in the passing game increased, too, with Aiyuk having a total of eight targets, compared with only three targets in Week 2 versus the New York Jets.
The rookie receiver was clearly a big part of the SF 49ers offensive game plan, as he received two jet-sweep handoffs from quarterback Nick Mullens within the first two minutes of the game.
Aiyuk gained 3 and 9 yards, respectively, on those handoffs and showcased his ability to make defenders miss.
These two jet sweeps were only an introduction for Aiyuk, who grew into the game, especially after halftime where some advice and coaching from Shanahan proved fruitful.
After having a pass broken up, another tipped by a defender in front of him, and another that was low in the first half, Aiyuk exploded after Shanahan’s pep talk.
As a result, the rookie broke out and showcased these five factors during the game. Here is the link to a video showing the following plays made by Aiyuk.