How PFF graded Lance's first start in 49ers' loss to Cards

Watt and Lance

The 49ers' 17-10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday wasn’t pretty but most importantly, the offense just couldn’t finish

Trey Lance had a few moments where he struggled in his first NFL start but he was able to move the ball down the field, just not consistently. The rookie completed 15 of his 29 attempts for 192 yards and threw one interception. He also was the leading rusher in the game, carrying the ball 16 times for 89 yards. 

A whopping 62 of Lance’s 89 rushing yards came after contact. Pro Football Focus tallied 45 of the rookie’s yards as scrambles and 44 as designed runs. Lance’s 65.9 passing grade resulted from a 51.7 pass completion rate that includes three drops by receivers of on-target passes. 

Lance’s overall 66.3 offensive score ranks second among the five rookie quarterbacks in their debut. 

  1. New England Patriots: Mac Jones -- 78.3
  2. San Francisco 49ers: Trey Lance -- 66.3
  3. New York Jets: Zach Wilson -- 63.2
  4. Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence -- 57.7
  5. Chicago Bears: Justin Fields -- 46.8

Lance was sacked twice for six yards with most pressures coming from J.J. Watt on the right side. The biggest problem for the 49ers, however, was being unable to put points on the board after lengthy drives.

RELATED: Lance has left knee sprain, could miss 1-to-2 weeks

Most offensive statistics were comparable to the Cardinals, the only difference being Lance and Co.’s inability to get into the end zone. 

The 49ers defense held the Cardinals to 17 points, their lowest total of the season. Previously, Arizona had been nearly unstoppable, scoring at least 31 points in their previous four contests. Arik Armstead, Nick Bosa and Dontae Johnson topped the defensive PFF score sheet. 


Here are a look at more highlights from Week 5:


Trent Williams - 77.1 

Williams continues to be standout on the offensive line, worth every penny of his history making contract that was signed during the offseason. The left tackle allowed one pressure (hurry) giving him a pass blocking score of 72.1 but his 86.9 run blocking score was top on the offense. 

Williams leads the league with a 93.4 grade through Week 5. 

Elijah Mitchell — 68.8 

The 49ers were happy to have the speedy rookie back on the field after missing several weeks due to a shoulder injury. Mitchell carried the ball nine times for 43 yards, but more importantly, he did a commendable job as a pass blocker. 

The ball carrier’s 83.9 grade as a pass blocker was only bested by Laken Tomlinson, who received an 88.2. Mitchell was on the field for eight pass plays and did not allow a pressure. 

Mike McGlinchey — 49.7

The right tackle had a rough go on Sunday. McGlinchey, who is usually a standout in the run blocking scheme, was stifled playing opposite of Watt much of the day and was graded a 37.4, the lowest on the offense. 

In pass blocking, McGlinchey received a 66.1 grade allowing four pressures on 38 pass plays including one sack, two hits and one hurry.

Daniel Brunskill — 46.9

Brunskill had trouble on the right side along with McGlinchey. His 13.7 pass blocking score was the lowest on the offense after allowing one hit and one hurry. The right guard’s 60.0 in run blocking brought up his overall score. 


Arik Armstead – 89.2 

The defensive lineman has consistently scored well through five weeks. Armstead tallies two quarterback pressures and assisted in two tackles. He also drew a holding call that was nearly a safety. 

Nick Bosa – 86.1

Bosa, like Armstead has been consistently on the top of the PFF charts. The 49ers star pass rusher recorded one sack, two quarterback hits and two hurries. According to PFF the Ohio State product also registered two tackles and one assist.

RELATED: 49ers report card: Grades for loss to Cardinals

Dontae Johnson – 83.8 

Not only did Johnson force a fumble and recover it, he recorded four tackles, with none missed. Johnson did allow nine receptions on nine targets he was covering for 87 yards but no scores. 

Josh Norman – 30.5 

The veteran cornerback was called for two penalties, though one was declined. He also allowed four catches on seven targets for 46 yards and the only receiving touchdown of the day from Kyler Murray to DeAndre Hopkins.

The 49ers defense held Kyler Murray to one yard rushing — his second lowest rushing total of his career. Murray had averaged 67 yards rushing in his previous four starts facing the 49ers.

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