Wide receivers Emmanuel Sanders, Deebo Samuel and Kendrick Bourne have earned the trust of 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan and his staff.
“We feel those three guys have earned the right to be out there more than the rest,” Shanahan said Monday on a conference call with Bay Area reporters. “We feel they have been the most consistent and started playing the best here over the last month or so.”
Meanwhile, the 49ers’ other wide receivers have not shown the kind of reliability to earn significant roles on game days, as became evident in the 49ers’ 20-17 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.
“Our three guys have really started to separate themselves a little bit from the group,” Shanahan said.
Sanders and Samuel were on the field for nearly every snap. Sanders took just one play off, while Samuel was on the sideline for just two of the 49ers’ 57 offensive plays. The team’s third receiver, Bourne, played 25 snaps.
Shanahan said he would like the other receivers to earn more playing time just so he can give Sanders and Samuel some rest.
“I don’t like how much they went,” Shanahan said. “I think we do have to rotate a little bit more and keep those guys fresh.”
Richie James saw action on just two plays, and veteran Marquise Goodwin never stepped on the field for an offensive snap. James' biggest contribution came on a block to help Raheem Mostert score on a 40-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.
Dante Pettis was inactive for the game due to a knee injury. But even before he got injured last week in practice, Pettis had fallen down the depth chart. He had just two receptions for 26 yards in his previous six games. Pettis is likely to miss at least another game with the injury.
Here is a look at how much everyone on the 49ers played Sunday on offense, defense and special teams:
Total offensive snaps: 57
Quarterback – Jimmy Garoppolo 57
Running back – Raheem Mostert 42, Kyle Juszczyk 26, Tevin Coleman 10, Jeff Wilson 5
Wide receiver – Emmanuel Sanders 56, Deebo Samuel 55, Kendrick Bourne 25, Richie James 2
Tight end – George Kittle 57, Garrett Celek 6, Ross Dwelley 1
Offensive line – Laken Tomlinson 57, Mike Person 57, Mike McGlinchey 57, Weston Richburg 57, Daniel Brunskill 57
Did not play – QB Nick Mullens, OL Ben Garland
Total defensive snaps: 65
Defensive line – Arik Armstead 61, Nick Bosa 55, DeForest Buckner 54, D.J. Jones 33, Jullian Taylor 24, Solomon Thomas 18, Sheldon Day 17, Jeremiah Valoaga 4
Linebacker – Fred Warner 65, Dre Greenlaw 64, Azeez Al-Shaair 39, Mark Nzeocha 1
Defensive back – Jimmie Ward 65, Ahkello Witherspoon 64, Richard Sherman 63, Jaquiski Tartt 38, Marcell Harris 28, K’Waun Williams 21, Emmanuel Moseley 1
Total special teams plays: 20
Tarvarius Moore 16, Elijah Lee 16, Moseley 16, Nzeocha 16, Al-Shaair 14, Harris 12, Mitch Wishnowsky 10, James 10, Celek 8, Ward 8, Armstead 8, Buckner 8, Bourne 7, Dwelley 7, Jones 7, D.J. Reed 6, Kyle Nelson 6, Mostert 6, Justin Skule 4, Robbie Gould 4, Person 4, McGlinchey 4, Tomlinson 4, Richburg 4, Thomas 4, Tartt 3, Juszczyk 2, Wilson 2, Greenlaw 2, Marquise Goodwin 1, Day 1
QB C.J. Beathard
K Chase McLaughlin
WR Dante Pettis
RB Matt Breida
DE Dee Ford
LT Joe Staley
TE Levine Toilolo