Also, a fourth-down throw slipped through his fingers in the fourth quarter.
LG MAURICE HURT: Hurt looked like a seventh-round rookie playing in his first NFL game. Is it his fault that he struggled? Or does Shanahan get the blame for assembling a roster on which a seventh-round rookie is the best option to replace injured LG Kory Lichtensteiger? I lean toward the latter.
But Hurt had difficulty against a couple of stunts in the first half. He didn’t switch off to pick up the outside rusher coming underneath, and QB John Beck paid the price. One of those plays was an opportunity for a long gain on third-and-8 from the Redskins‘ 11 in the second quarter. TE Fred Davis eventually broke open to the right sideline, but Beck had to get rid of it before he was hit only 2.4 seconds after the snap.
Hurt also lost some individual blocks because of poor technique. On first-and-10 from the Washington 19 in the third quarter, he stood straight up against DE Justin Smith. Without a strong base, Smith easily pushed Hurt back and collapsed the pocket, forcing Beck to run.
On a few plays, Hurt was too slow to be effective. He didn’t get to LB NaVorro Bowman in time on one second-half run, so Bowman was able to help string it out to the sideline for a gain of only 1 yard.
PR/KR BRANDON BANKS: Banks muffed two punts, including one he tried to field at the Redskins‘ 3-yard line. Shanahan has confidence in Banks’ explosive return ability, but he was irked by Banks’ decision to try to field a punt so close to his goal line. Perhaps that’s a manifestation of Banks’ frustrations. His 21- and 11-yard returns against Buffalo last week are his only punt returns longer than 5 yards out of 11 tries since Week 3.
RT SEAN LOCKLEAR:Locklear gave up a sack and a few more pressures in relief of injured RT Jammal Brown. Perhaps it’s harsh to put him on this list considering he hardly practiced at right tackle last week; LT Trent Williams’ ankle injury required him to start the past two games on the left. To Locklear’s credit, he has given full effort, and he’s a stand-up guy. He was hard on himself after the game.
Locklear took responsibility for the 49ers’ only sack. LB Ahmad Brooks hit QB John Beck 3.7 seconds after the snap, but, “In our head, there is no time clock,” Locklear said. “We’re supposed to give him all the time he needs.”
Brooks set him up outside, and Locklear got off balance when he whiffed on his punch. Then Brooks slapped past him to the inside and got to Beck. Locklear has not shown the ability to quickly change directions or recover when beaten. He gave up two pressures on inside spin moves against which he was too slow to react.
Locklear was driven back by DT Ricky Jean Francois on a 2-yard rush by RB Ryan Torain in the second quarter. Jean Francois’ superior leverage off the snap forced Torain to make his first cut four yards in the backfield.
RT TRENT WILLIAMS:Williams is here for only one play. His 15-yard personal foul for hitting DE Justin Smith cost the Redskins a third-down conversion in San Francisco territory with the score 3-0 in the second quarter. Williams should know better than that because the same thing happened after the Redskins‘ first interception in the Philadelphia game in Week 6. Washington’s offense is too inept to be giving away third-down conversions on the plus side of the field. He has to keep his poise.
Williams also committed a false start on first-and-10 later in the half. Otherwise, he blocked quite well only three weeks after suffering a high right ankle sprain.
• One could argue that RB Roy Helu‘s fumble late in the second quarter was the play of the game. He didn’t secure the ball while running in the open field, and the 49ers scored a dagger of a touchdown on the ensuing play. But Mike Shanahan has to like how Helu responded on the first play of the fourth quarter.View Entire Story
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