49ers Week 14 grades: Offense

SAN FRANCISCO – The 49ers beat the Dolphins 27-13. Here are the grades for the 49ers offense.

Offensive line: C. They’re a big, strong run-blocking line that struggles in pass protection. The 49ers came out passing in the first half and the line wasn’t up to it. Anthony Davis gave up three sacks in the first half. He was a complete liability and he forced Greg Roman to abandon the pass-first game plan entirely.

In the run game, this group excelled like it usually does. The 49ers averaged 5.5 yards per carry, and the line gets credit for that.

But they are not built to pass protect on obvious pass downs – like third down. That’s a problem.

Running backs: A. Frank Gore had a very good game – 12 carries for 63 yards and a touchdown. He made one of the best plays of the game when he broke five tackles on a screen pass.

LaMichael James had a few plays that gained more than ten yards – a run around the outside, a run up the middle and a reception on a screen. He’s extremely fast and suddenly a key player on the offense. Even though he can’t break a tackle, the 49ers need his speed.

Anthony Dixon had two carries and they were both very good. One was an eight-yard gain on an outside sweep, and the other was a one-yard power run for a touchdown.

Between James and Dixon, the 49ers have decent backup running backs. Say goodbye to Brandon Jacobs, who has no use on this team.

Wide receivers: A-. Michael Crabtree had another terrific game – he’s had a lot of those this season. He’s ferocious after the catch. The quick pass to him at the line of scrimmage is one of Greg Roman’s favorite plays right now. Randy Moss was the only other wide receiver who was targeted. He caught two passes but dropped what would have been a deep TD in the second half. A.J. Jenkins played a few snaps but was not targeted on any passes.


Tight ends: C+. Delanie Walker caught a 20-yard pass on the first play of the game. Greg Roman never called his number again. Vernon Davis caught a four-yard pass in the first quarter, and that was it. Greg Roman and John Morton seem unable to get the football to the best tight end in the NFL. Not good.

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