Here are the grades for the San Francisco 49ers’ 27-6 loss to the St. Louis Rams.
KAEPERNICK: D-. Don’t get me wrong – he was putrid. Passer rating of 59.2. Skipped passes to open receivers. Missed receivers in the end zone. Stuff Kurt Warner must have taught him. But I can’t give Kaepernick an “F.” He had zero running game.
RUNNING BACK(S): F-. Reggie Bush slipped out of bounds on his first touch of the game and tore his ACL. The other two running backs – Mike Davis and Kendall Gaskins—rushed 15 times for 10 yards, and fullback Bruce Miller dropped a pass in the red zone.
WIDE RECEIVERS: F+. Offensive coordinator Geep Chryst still can’t figure out how to get Torrey Smith involved. Smith finished this game with just two catches for 19 yards. The Niners’ best receiver was Jerome Simpson, who wasn’t that good. He had three catches for 34 yards.
TIGHT ENDS: F. Garrett Celek left the game with a concussion. Vance McDonald caught the first pass of the game then caught no more. Vernon Davis caught six passes but gained only 24 yards.
OFFENSIVE LINE: F. Trent Baalke assumed starting center Daniel Kilgore would be healthy this season, which is one of the biggest reasons the Niners are so awful this season. Kilgore still is injured, and his replacement, Marcus Martin, gave up a safety today after getting pushed back two yards into the end zone.
DEFENSIVE LINE: B. The 49ers’ run defense wasn’t that bad. Other than the 71-yard touchdown run, Rams starting tailback Todd Gurley averaged only 3.2 yards per carry.
LINEBACKERS: C. NaVorro Bowman had 13 tackles, but none of the linebackers ever touched Rams quarterback Nick Foles.
DEFENSIVE BACKS: C. Gave up two big plays—a 66-yard touchdown to wide receiver Tavon Austin on a “bubble” screen, and a 49-yard catch to tight end Jared Cook. Cook was wide open over the middle after a 49ers’ blitz failed to reach Foles.
SPECIAL TEAMS: F. Bruce Miller got penalized three times on special teams before halftime, and punter Bradley Pinion hurt his calf.
COACHES: D. Give Eric Mangini credit for holding the Rams’ offense to one third-down conversion on 12 attempts. Mangini is a decent defensive coordinator. Geep Chryst is the worst offensive coordinator in the NFL. He has no clue how to get players into the flow of a game. He just calls plays and substitutes players liberally. At the beginning of this game, he substituted running backs almost every play. Players burned more energy running on and off the field than they did playing the game.