The 49ers beat the Washington Redskins 9-0 on Sunday. Here are the 49ers’ grades:
GOOD JIMMY: A. He was the offense’s biggest asset. He scrambled four times for 20 yards on a wet, muddy field and made strong, confident cuts on his surgically-repaired left knee. Good Jimmy had to make these runs because nothing worked in the passing game early on. The 49ers had just five net passing yards at halftime. But, Good Jimmy finished the game by completing his final nine passes, and those passes gained 141 yards. He did all of this despite playing on the road, in the rain, without two starting offensive tackles, two wide receivers and one Pro Bowl fullback. Good Jimmy showed resilience, poise and skill — everything you’d want from a franchise quarterback.
BAD JIMMY: F. He was the offense’s biggest weakness. He missed seven of his first 10 throws, and didn’t not transfer his weight confidently onto his surgically-repaired knee when passing. So, he floated passes and missed open receivers. He also forced a couple of passes into tight coverage which the Redskins dropped. And in the third quarter, he threw an interception because he telegraphed his throw. The free safety read Bad Jimmy’s eyes, ran across the field and intercepted the pass. Bad Jimmy showed hesitancy, poor decision-making and poor discipline — everything you’d expect from an inexperienced quarterback coming off a torn ACL.
GAROPPOLO: C. He oscillates between Good Jimmy and Bad Jimmy multiple times during a game, even during a drive. He finished this game with a quarterback rating of 59.8, which is not good. But, he improved his career win-loss record to 14-2, which is phenomenal. Will the real Jimmy please stand up?
RUNNING BACKS: B. Tevin Coleman, Matt Breida and Jeff Wilson Jr. all ran extremely hard even though they didn’t have much space to run without Kyle Juszczyk blocking. Their longest run gained just 11 yards. And yet, they finished with 117 yards on the ground and controlled the tempo of the game.
WIDE RECEIVERS: B. Deebo Samuel sat out with a groin injury, and Marquise Goodwin suffered a concussion during the first quarter and missed the rest of the game. Their replacements, Kendrick Bourne and Richie James Jr., both played well. They combined for 109 receiving yards. Dante Pettis could have made a long catch — he beat his man deep down the sideline. But, Bad Jimmy’s pass got intercepted by the free safety.
TIGHT ENDS: B. Ross Dwelley made a diving two-yard catch on fourth and one late in the fourth quarter. George Kittle caught only three passes, but all of them were on third down and all of them moved the chains. Even when the other team knows the ball will to Kittle, they still can’t stop him. The 49ers have two quality tight ends.
OFFENSIVE LINEMEN: C. They gave up two sacks and didn’t create big holes for the running game, but they didn’t have Joe Staley or Mike McGlinchey, the starting tackles. Considering what the line didn’t have, it played well enough.
DEFENSIVE LINEMEN: A. Dominant as usual. Dee Ford, Arik Armstead and Nick Bosa each sacked Redskins quarterback Case Keenum once. Bosa led the team with seven tackles and four tackles for loss. And Jullian Taylor made a critical fumble recovery after replacing Solomon Thomas at nose tackle.
LINEBACKERS: A-plus. Kwon Alexander was the player of the game. He punched the ball out of Redskins running back Adrian Peterson’s grasp late in the third quarter when the score was 3-0. Alexander sealed the win.
DEFENSIVE BACKS: A. They gave up only 50 net passing yards, and didn’t even have their best cornerback, Ahkello Witherspoon, who could return next week when the 49ers play the Carolina Panthers. What a group!
SPECIAL TEAMS: B-minus. Robbie Gould missed his seventh field goal attempt of the season, but he made three others, and those were the difference in the game.
COACHES: B-plus. Robert Saleh’s defense has given up just 10 points the past three games. He’s a brilliant defensive coordinator. Kyle Shanahan’s offense didn’t perform well in the rain, but it was missing key players. And Shanahan found ways to move the ball with the play-action passing game in the fourth quarter. Shanahan almost always finds a way. The performance was sloppy at times, but a win is a win is a win.