49ers offensive line seems to have turned the corner
One of the biggest issues the 49ers have had the last couple of seasons has been the offensive line. Last year was no different. Although the team consistently blocks runs well, their work in pass protection has never been cohesively strong.
Week 1 against Detroit, granted against a defense that doesn’t showcase elite pass-rushers, was a bright spot.
Left tackle Trent Williams was exceptional, as always, in all phases of the game. But unlike many times last year, he wasn’t alone in his excellence. The Lions finished with one sack and three quarterback hits, and although those numbers don’t relate to pressures, it’s a much cleaner sheet than the Niners have had in the past.
Moreover, the pressures and many of the QB hits came from blitzes rather than a four-man rush.
It’s impossible to have no pressures in the game, but quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo had much more time this year than in years prior, and it played out both in the depth of his targets as compared to prior seasons as well as his overall efficiency.
Is improvement possible? Absolutely, but given the questions of the unit heading into the season, a showing like this is without question a pleasant surprise.