49ers don’t get good game grades after loss to Seahawks
By Peter Panacy
49ers Offensive Grades vs. Seahawks
Surprisingly enough, the 49ers managed to outgain the Hawks 365 to 327, but going 3-of-10 on third downs had the look of offenses plagued by problems earlier in the season when the Niners were immersed in their ugly four-game losing streak.
Turnovers, too, as quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo tossed two interceptions that both resulted in Seattle points.
Some may say Garoppolo was good enough to win, going 20-of-30 for 299 yards, two touchdowns against two interceptions, with a passer rating of 93.6.
But Garoppolo looked more like his inaccurate self, and those two interceptions surely weren’t pretty.
Particularly this one, which seemed to be an intended pass for Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner:
Some catch-and-run plays by tight end George Kittle helped inflate Garoppolo’s numbers, but the quarterback looked nothing like a game-managing signal-caller, and he bears as much blame for San Francisco’s loss as anyone else.
Running Back: C
It was going to be tough for running back Elijah Mitchell to gain a lot of headway against a Hawks defense that was averaging just 3.9 rush yards per carry against entering Week 13.
Mitchell managed 66 yards on 22 carries, averaging 3 yards per attempt, and his touchdown was a big moment in the game. And he nearly lost a fumble when he suffered a second-half injury, but that call was overturned upon further review.
Not a horrible game by any stretch, but Week 13 certainly wasn’t one of Mitchell’s best.
Wide Receiver: D
The 49ers needed someone to step up in the absence of wide receiver Deebo Samuel, who missed the game because of a groin injury.
Fellow wideout Brandon Aiyuk somewhat did this with three catches for 55 yards, but he also dropped two passes and didn’t quite establish himself as the go-to force the Niners offense so desperately needed in the second half.
No other wide receiver had more than two catches, and San Francisco needs Samuel back in a big way.
Tight End: A+
Kittle was about the only absolute positive from the 49ers offense on Sunday, and his efforts essentially kept Garoppolo and Co. in the game.
Most of those efforts, including two touchdowns, occurred in the first half. But Kittle’s prowess still made the 49ers’ last-ditch scoring effort late in the fourth quarter possible.
And his 48-yard catch-and-run touchdown along the sideline was impressive, too:
Kittle finished with only his second 100-yard game of the season, hauling in nine catches for 181 yards and two touchdowns.
At least he stepped up with Samuel out.
Offensive Line: C-
The Niners offensive line is going to catch a lot of flak for what happened in Week 13, and deservedly so. This unit wasn’t able to win at the line of scrimmage in the run game, and there were two penalties called against this unit, too, one on center Alex Mack and the aforementioned hold on Laken Tomlinson.
But, if there was a major turning-point moment, it was on right tackle Tom Compton getting blown up by Seahawks defensive tackle Carlos Dunlap for a sack in the end zone on Garoppolo for a safety.
That was ugly enough to knock down this unit two grades alone, even though it was the only sack Garoppolo took.