49ers

Snap count: In first game without Bowman, Coyle struggles to fill void

Snap count: In first game without Bowman, Coyle struggles to fill void

The release of veteran linebacker NaVorro Bowman forced Brock Coyle onto the field for every defensive snap of the 49ers’ 26-24 loss Sunday to Washington.

Coyle and free safety Jimmie Ward played all 74 defensive plays for the 49ers' defense.

Coyle struggled in pass coverage while making the start in Bowman’s old position. According to Pro Football Focus, Coyle allowed six catches on seven passes he defended for 77 yards and a touchdown.

Fellow inside linebacker Ray-Ray Armstrong also had his difficulties, allowing catches on all five targets for 136 yards.

Rookie cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon also saw his most playing time on the season, as he rotated into the game at various times to replace starters Dontae Johnson and Rashard Robinson. Witherspoon played 34 snaps.

Eric Reid was cleared to play, but saw action on just 10 plays, as Jaquiski Tartt held onto his starting job at strong safety for at least another week.

Rookie defensive lineman Solomon Thomas played more than any other 49ers defensive lineman and he responded with a strong game. Thomas was on the field for 68 of the 49ers’ 74 defensive plays. He recorded his second sack of the season and have five run stops, according to PFF.

Here is a look at the 49ers’ playing time on offense, defense and special teams:

OFFENSE
(72 plays)
Quarterback – C.J. Beathard 54, Brian Hoyer 18
Running back – Carlos Hyde 56, Matt Breida 17, Raheem Mostert 1
Wide receiver – Marquise Goodwin 61, Pierre Garçon 60, Trent Taylor 44, Aldrick Robinson 15, Victor Bolden 3
Tight end – George Kittle 66, Garrett Celek 30, Logan Paulsen 3, Cole Hikutini 2
Offensive line – Joe Staley 72, Trent Brown 72, Daniel Kilgore 72, Brandon Fusco 72, Laken Tomlinson 72, Garry Gilliam 2

DEFENSE
(74 plays)
Defensive line – Solomon Thomas 68, DeForest Buckner 61, Earl Mitchell 49, Xavier Cooper 32, Arik Armstead 22, D.J. Jones 18, Aaron Lynch 18, Elvis Dumervil 15
Linebacker – Brock Coyle 74, Ray-Ray Armstrong 61, Eli Harold 48, Elijah Lee 4, Mark Nzeocha 2
Cornerback – Dontae Johnson 56, Rashard Robinson 53, K’Waun Williams 41, Ahkello Witherspoon 34
Safety – Jimmie Ward 74, Jaquiski Tartt 73, Eric Reid 10, Adrian Colbert 1

SPECIAL TEAMS
(30 plays)
Lee 21, Colbert 19, Harold 19, Paulsen 19, Mostert 19, Nzeocha 18, Celek 16, Witherspoon 16, Bradley Pinion 14, Bolden 13, Pita Taumoepenu 12, Johnson 12, Kyle Nelson 11, Tartt 9, Jones 9, Hikutini 8, Ward 7, Robbie Gould 6, Coyle 6, Breida 6, Mitchell 6, Thomas 6, Buckner 6, Reid 6, Zane Beadles 5, Staley 5, Brown 5, Kilgore 5, Fusco 5, Armstrong 4, Gilliam 4, R.Robinson 4, Taylor 4, Armstead 3, Tomlinson 1

DID NOT PLAY
None

INACTIVE
WR Kendrick Bourne
CB Leon Hall
DB Dexter McCoil
FB Kyle Juszczyk (back)
LB Reuben Foster (ankle)
LB Dekoda Watson (groin)
OL Erik Magnuson

Kilgore: All of 49ers on same page 'for the first time in a long time'

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USATSI

Kilgore: All of 49ers on same page 'for the first time in a long time'

The 49ers’ coaching staff made its feelings known to center Daniel Kilgore throughout the season.

But, in the past, that would not have necessarily meant everyone in the organization had the same thoughts about Kilgore, who was scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent.

“The whole season, coaches and I had a good relationship,” Kilgore said Wednesday on conference call with Bay Area reporters. “Just talking and having one-on-ones with various coaches, I had a positive outlook for the future.

“But that’s just one thing. The coaches have an opinion of you, but then there’s also the front office. That’s two totally different things. And I think for the first time in a long time, our coaches and the front office are on the same page.”

Kilgore was working out back home in Tennessee on Wednesday when he signed a three-year contract to avoid hitting the free-agent market. Kilgore, 30, a seven-year NFL veteran, described the contract as a team-friendly deal.

The 49ers presented Kilgore with a contract offer during the season but negotiations did not get serious until just recently. While the 49ers expressed interest in retaining Kilgore, he said he did not know what the future held for him when he packed his belongings from the locker room on the day after the season ended.

“It kind of makes you nervous because in this profession, people like the younger guys,” Kilgore said. “You just never know what will happen at any time, any given day, in the NFL. So toward the end, that last day of clearing out the locker, I didn’t know if I’d be back. I didn’t know if the Niners would want me back.”

Kilgore was named the winner of the organization’s top honor for an offensive lineman. Kilgore won the Bobb McKittrick Award for best exemplifying the dedication, excellence and commitment of the long-time 49ers offensive line coach. Kilgore started all 29 games in which he appeared the past two seasons, including a career-high 16 games last season.

"I've been here seven years and I consider the Bay Area my second home,” Kilgore said. “To be able to extend my career wearing the 49ers jersey was special to me. This team is heading in the right direction, I wanted to be a part of it."

Why the 49ers did not hesitate to pay Garoppolo big money

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Matt Maiocco

Why the 49ers did not hesitate to pay Garoppolo big money

When Jimmy Garoppolo signed a contract that could pay him up to $137.5 million over the next five years, he was asked what convinced him during his nine weeks with the organization that he wanted to be with the 49ers for the long term.

“I think it was a number of things,” Garoppolo said last week. “The team, the acceptance that they had of me when I first got here from the get-go, the coaching staff, Kyle and Rich. It was a very welcoming environment, and I really liked that. We had some success down the stretch, and you could see that pieces were falling into place. We've got a long way to go, but I think we're moving in the right direction.”

Kyle, of course, is head coach Kyle Shanahan. Rich Scagarello is the 49ers’ quarterbacks coach, and the person from whom Garoppolo spent the most time after arriving in Santa Clara on Oct. 31 after a trade with the New England Patriots.

Garoppolo earned $3.5 million in his first four NFL seasons. His new contract makes him the NFL’s highest-paid player, making an average of $27.5 million per season, with $48.7 million fully guaranteed.

Scangarello, appearing this week on The 49ers Insider Podcast, talked about what he learned about Garoppolo from working so closely with him to teach him Shanahan's offense. Scangarello said there is no question in his mind the money will not change Garoppolo’s approach to his work.

“That’s why it was easy for the organization and everyone to invest in somebody like Jimmy Garoppolo,” Scangarello said. “I just think that’s not the kind of person he is. If you met his family, you know where he comes from, what he’s about. His brothers, his parents, are just good, solid people people. He’s made of the right stuff and I just don’t see that affecting him in that way.

“It’s just not who he is. That’s the fun part of working with somebody like that every day. When they’re really talented and they appreciate everything and they work at it, you have a chance to be a successful organization and they can be a great player. And I don’t think those things will ever affect him.”