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Aiyuk returns to every-down role in 49ers' loss to Packers

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Brandon Aiyuk

Brandon Aiyuk is back to being an every-down player for the 49ers after sharing time with Trent Sherfield through the first two weeks of the season.

On Sunday night, Aiyuk rarely came off the field, as he played 60 of the team’s 70 offensive snaps. Meanwhile, Sherfield saw his play time cut dramatically, as he played just three snaps on offense and 13 on special teams.

“I think going into the game, every game, I know what my assignment is and what I have to do,” Aiyuk said in the aftermath of the 49ers’ 30-28 loss to the Green Bay Packers.

“I feel like it was no different than any other week just going into the game and worrying about what I can control and nothing different from that.”

Aiyuk averaged five catches for more than 60 yards last season as a rookie. On Monday, he had his best game of 2021 with four receptions for 34 yards. He dropped a potential touchdown pass from Jimmy Garoppolo in the second quarter but came back to make an 8-yard scoring grab in the third quarter.

Aiyuk had an inconsistent training camp and was sidelined before the season opener with a hamstring injury.

He said he tried to take a clinical approach to his decrease in playing time early in the season.

“Going back to work, just like we will this week, watch it for the next 24 hours, look at the tape and then flush it and move on,” Aiyuk said. “Try to get better. That is the only thing you can do -- move on and get better.”


Rookie quarterback Trey Lance got onto the field for three plays on Monday. His first resulted in a 1-yard touchdown run -- his first in the NFL.

Lance was a decoy in the shotgun formation on a play in which fullback Kyle Juszczyk went under center and kept it for a 2-yard gain on a third-and-1 play. Lance also threw incomplete to Aiyuk in the end zone on a play in which the Packers were called for defensive holding.

RELATED: Grades for 49ers' offense, defense in tough loss to Packers

Veteran cornerback Josh Norman played 30 snaps before leaving the game with what the 49ers described as a chest injury. Nickelback K'Waun Williams was on the field for just six plays before he was sidelined with a calf injury.

Here is a look at how much action each 49ers player saw on offense, defense and special teams:

Quarterback: Jimmy Garoppolo 67, Trey Lance 3

Running back: Kyle Juszczyk 48, Trey Sermon 41

Wide receiver: Deebo Samuel 63, Brandon Aiyuk 60, Mohamed Sanu 45, Jauan Jennings 3, Trent Sherfield 2

Tight end: George Kittle 70, Ross Dwelley 10, Charlie Woerner 8

Offensive line: Daniel Brunskill 70, Laken Tomlinson 70, Mike McGlinchey 70, Alex Mack 70, Trent Williams 70

Defensive line: Nick Bosa 54, Arik Armstead 48, Javon Kinlaw 40, D.J. Jones 31, Kentavius Street 23, Dee Ford 20, Samson Ebukam 19, Arden Key 11, Zach Kerr 6

Linebacker: Fred Warner 63, Azeez Al-Shaair 60, Marcell Harris 25

Cornerback: Emmanuel Moseley 63, Deommodore Lenoir 45, Josh Norman 30, Dontae Johnson 20, K’Waun Williams 6

Safety: Jimmie Ward 63, Jaquiski Tartt 63, Talanoa Hufanga 3

Special teams: Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles 23, Harris 23, Hufanga 23, Ebukam 19, Trenton Cannon 17, Woerner 17, Tavon Wilson 14, Johnson 14, Dwelley 13, Sherfield 13, Mitch Wishnowsky 12, Lenoir 12, Armstead 10, Ward 10, Jones 9, Kerryon Johnson 9, Taybor Pepper 8, Kinlaw 6, Key 6, Tom Compton 4, Jake Brendel 4, Robbie Gould 4, Brunskill 4, Tomlinson 4, McGlinchey 4, Juszczyk 4, Sanu 3, Aiyuk 3, Moseley 3, Jennings 1, Street 1

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