Biggest studs, duds from 49ers Week 17 win over Texans

Trey Lance #5 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Trey Lance #5 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Josh Norman, San Francisco 49ers
Josh Norman #26 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

49ers Dud: Cornerback Josh Norman

Houston tried replicating the same kind of success other Niners opponents have had, attacking San Francisco’s questionable cornerback room.

And while rookie cornerback Ambry Thomas has seen the pressure come off his shoulders in recent weeks, those teams aren’t shying away from going after veteran cornerback Josh Norman, who entered the game with a team-high four defensive pass-interference calls accepted against him.

Tack on one more of those after Week 17.

San Francisco ended up surrendering back-to-back defensive pass-interference calls, the first being on Norman, and Kyle Shanahan subsequently told reporters Norman was benched for that play in favor of the journeyman veteran, Dontae Johnson.

It’s unclear whether or not this will be a long-term development, as Shanahan has also stuck by Norman because of the veteran’s tendency to force fumbles.

But with those in short supply as of late, Norman’s status as a starter remains very much up in the air.