Here are the grades for the San Francisco 49ers’ 32-17 loss to the Detroit Lions.
GABBERT: C. Posted a passer rating of 106.2 against a defense that was giving up an average opponent passer rating of 101.4 coming into the game. Converted just one-of-nine third downs while throwing short of the first-down marker almost every time. Fumbled the ball, which the Lions recovered at the Niners 1-yard line. Completed the one deep pass he attempted, and offensive coordinator Geep Chryst never called another shot downfield. More on Chryst below.
RUNNING BACKS: B-. Jarryd Hayne had a bad game: 3.0 yards per carry and only 5.0 yards per reception. His touches should have gone to DuJuan Harris, who gained 84 yards from scrimmage and averaged 7.0 yards per touch. Chryst called only two plays for Harris during the second half. More on Chryst below.
WIDE RECEIVERS: D. The top three receivers – Anquan Boldin, Torrey Smith and Quinton Patton – gained just 78 total receiving yards on 12 targets. The No. 4 receiver – Bruce Ellington – gained 55 receiving yards by himself, but Chryst called only four plays for him. More on Chryst below.
TIGHT ENDS: C. Blake Bell did nothing except commit an illegal motion penalty. Vance McDonald was the team’s leading receiver – five catches, 61 receiving yards and one touchdown – although he dropped what should have been a first-down catch on the 49ers’ final offensive play. Who knows why Chryst would call a pass for Skillet Hands with the game on the line. More on Chryst below.
OFFENSIVE LINE: B. Joe Staley and Andrew Tiller created canyons for running backs to spring through. Those two seem like a terrific combination on the left side of the offensive line. In the passing game, the entire O-line gave up three sacks, but one wasn’t their fault—Chryst called a play-action rollout in which Tiller had to pull across the formation and block a defensive end. The play didn’t work. More on Chryst below.
DEFENSIVE LINE: B. Strong against the run, holding the Lions to just 3.1 yards per carry. Non-factors against the pass, touching quarterback Matthew Stafford only once and sacking him no times. Also jumped offside twice.
LINEBACKERS: C. NaVorro Bowman made 10 tackles and missed two. Gerald Hodges made nine tackles and committed one offside penalty. Ahmad Brooks recorded 1.5 sacks, two quarterback hits and one offside penalty. Aaron Lynch didn’t show up and still committed one offside penalty.
DEFENSIVE BACKS: F. Eric Reid, Jaquiski Tartt and Kenneth Acker each missed tackles, Tramaine Brock and Dontae Johnson each gave up one touchdown catch, and Jimmie Ward committed one offside penalty. Together, this group gave up a passer rating of 118.6 to a quarterback who came into the game with a rating of 93.7.
SPECIAL TEAMS: D. Gave up a five-yard first-down carry on a fourth-down fake, and Phil Dawson missed a field goal.
COACHES: F. Jim Tomsula couldn’t figure out how to stop his team from committing penalties, Eric Mangini couldn’t figure out how to stop a one-dimensional offense from scoring 32 points and Geep Chryst couldn’t figure out how to score more than zero points in the second half. The Lions adjusted to Chryst’s game plan during halftime and he couldn’t readjust. He is the weakest part on the worst trio of coaches in the NFL.