CHICAGO -- Rookie safety Talanoa Hufanga made his first NFL start for the 49ers on Sunday, and he had a full day of work.
Hufanga played all 70 defensive snaps on defense, as well as seven plays on special teams in the 49ers’ 33-22 victory over the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.
“He was great,” 49ers cornerback Josh Norman said of Hufanga. "He was everything we asked and then some. He wasn’t scared of the moment.
“A guy like that, he's always going to get better. He’s a rookie for crying out loud. He played like a vet today. Glad he’s on our team.”
Another element about the 49ers' play time on Sunday that stood out was how the team used their wide receivers.
Brandon Aiyuk was on the field for 49 of the 49ers' 56 offensive snaps. Deebo Samuel had a huge day with 171 yards receiving, and he played 46 snaps. That appears to be a sign that Aiyuk is doing all of the things necessary to get on the field and win the trust of his coaches and teammates.
Hufanga has certainly won the trust of everyone with the 49ers. He was credited with five tackles, including one for a loss. He was a part of a defensive effort that held the Bears to just 148 yards of net passing.
Hufanga, a fifth-round draft pick from USC, will be counted on to remain in the starting lineup with Jaquiski Tartt on injured reserve for at least the next two games due to a knee injury.
The 49ers will likely have two backup safeties in the starting lineup when they return to action Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.
Free safety Jimmie Ward left the game in the second half with a quadriceps injury. Veteran Tavon Wilson played 13 snaps after Ward was sidelined.
Coach Kyle Shanahan called Ward’s injury a “pretty big concern.”
“I think when you talk about pulling a quad, it's very similar to pulling a hamstring,” Shanahan said. “And we'll see if that's the case on it.”
Here is a look at how much action each 49ers player saw on offense, defense and special teams:
Quarterback: Jimmy Garoppolo 56
Running back: Elijah Mitchell 36, Kyle Juszczyk 31, JaMycal Hasty 19
Wide receiver: Brandon Aiyuk 49, Deebo Samuel 46, Mohamed Sanu 25, Trent Sherfield 7, Jauan Jennings 7
Tight end: Charlie Woerner 45, Ross Dwelley 15
Offensive line: Daniel Brunskill, 56, Laken Tomlinson 56, Mike McGlinchey 56, Alex Mack 56, Trent Williams 56
Defensive line: Nick Bosa 57, Arik Armstead 55, Samson Ebukam 41, D.J. Jones 37, Arden Key 33, Kevin Givens 18, Jordan Willis 18, Kentavius Street 15, Zach Kerr 9
Linebacker: Fred Warner 70, Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles 47, Marcell Harris 33
Cornerback: Josh Norman 70, Emmanuel Moseley 70, K’Waun Williams 50
Safety: Talanoa Hufanga 70, Jimmie Ward 64, Tavon Wilson 13
Special teams: Tyrell Adams 20, Dontae Johnson 20, Flannigan-Fowles 18, Kai Nacua 15, Dre Kirkpatrick 14, Joey Slye 14, Trenton Cannon 14, Wilson 14, Hasty 13, Woerner 13, Armstead 12, Jones 12, Trey Sermon 11, Sherfield 10, Harris 10, Dwelley 8, Jake Brendel 7, Taybor Pepper 7, Tom Compton 7, Mitch Wishnowsky 7, Brunskill 7, Tomlinson 7, McGlinchey 7, Hufanga 7, Ward 7, Key 5, Street 5, Jordan Matthews 4, Aiyuk 2
Did not play: QB Trey Lance, OL Jaylon Moore
Inactive: WR Travis Benjamin, CB Ambry Thomas, CB Deommodore Lenoir, LB Azeez Al-Shaair, DE Dee Ford, OL Aaron Banks, DT Maurice Hurst (calf)