Kelly: With lack of depth, starting Kap one of only moves 49ers can make

Kelly: With lack of depth, starting Kap one of only moves 49ers can make

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers do not expect all of their offensive problems to be solved with the benching of quarterback Blaine Gabbert and the promotion of Colin Kaepernick as the starter.

It’s just that coach Chip Kelly, in explaining his decision, pointed out that the club had few other places to turn on its 53-man roster.

“It’s really one of the only maneuvers we can make based on our depth, where we are and what we’re doing,” Kelly said.

The 49ers are also expected to move rookie guard Joshua Garnett into the starting lineup at right guard in place of Andrew Tiller, who started the first five games of the season. Garnett played a season-high 18 snaps in the 49ers’ 33-21 loss to the Arizona Cardinals last Thursday.

The 49ers have a dearth of playmakers at wide receiver with veteran wide receivers Torrey Smith and Jeremy Kerley, along with Quinton Patton, Aaron Burbridge, Rod Streater and Keshawn Martin.

“I think we were very analytical and sat down as a staff and watch tape and went over everything,” Kelly said. “We’ve had a couple days to kind of digest everything where we are and I think offensively we need to be better and we need to just make a move. It’s really not, it’s not Blaine’s fault.”

The 49ers’ offense is ranked 31st in the NFL in total yards and passing. Gabbert ranks 30th in the NFL in passer rating (out of 31 qualifying quarterbacks) and last in the league with just 5.93 yards per pass attempt. The 49ers enter Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills on a four-game losing streak.

One of the biggest disappointments for the 49ers’ offense is its inability to get Smith involved in the passing game. Through five games, Smith has just nine catches for 106 yards and a touchdown.

Smith said he would have supported whatever move the 49ers’ coaching staff made at the quarterback position.

“Not using the word ‘scapegoat’ or anything, (but) it’s easy to point the finger to one person when things aren’t going right and you’re not winning,” Smith said. “That’s on all of us. It doesn’t matter if they make the change to Kap if we’re not out there getting open and making plays or blocking. We have to go out and execute better. That’s our issue.”

49ers call up DB Tyvis Powell from practice squad

49ers call up DB Tyvis Powell from practice squad

KANSAS CITY – Starting strong safety Jaquiski Tartt is questionable for Sunday's game against the Kansas City Chiefs with a shoulder injury, so the 49ers took out an insurance policy.

The team promoted defensive back Tyvis Powell to the active roster from the practice squad on Saturday and released linebacker Terence Garvin.

Powell, Antone Exum and D.J. Reed saw action at strong safety in practices this week, 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh said.

Powell, who saw action in three games for the 49ers last season, moved to safety late in training camp this summer. He was among the team’s final cuts but was immediately signed to the practice squad. Powell will wear No. 30 on Sunday against the Chiefs. Garvin spent one game with the 49ers and recorded one special-teams tackle against the Detroit Lions last week.

NFL picks: 49ers vs. Chiefs Week 3 score predictions

NFL picks: 49ers vs. Chiefs Week 3 score predictions

The 49ers (1-1) take their show on the road to Kansas City on Sunday as they face the Chiefs (2-0) in Week 3 of the 2018 NFL season.

San Francisco will be tasked with trying to slow down Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who has thrown 10 touchdown passes and has yet to be intercepted in two games.

Running back Matt Breida will look to reclaim his place as the NFL's leading rusher. The second-year back enters the game with 184 yards, trailing former 49er Carlos Hyde, who has 203 rushing yards following Cleveland's win on Thursday night.

NFL experts from around the country have made their picks for Sunday's clash, and all of them see the Chiefs dropping the 49ers to 1-2.

Nick Wagoner, ESPN.com: Chiefs 37, 49ers 31

Adam Teicher, ESPN.com: Chiefs 34, 49ers 28

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports: Chiefs 31, 49ers 28

Elliot Harrison, NFL.com: Chiefs 37, 49ers 30

Blair Kerkhoff, Kansas City Star: Chiefs, 30, 49ers 23

Vincent Frank, Forbes.com: Chiefs 41, 49ers 31


This Sunday, be sure to watch 49ers Pregame Live at 9 a.m. on NBC Sports Bay Area and 49ers Postgame Live immediately after the game on NBC Sports Bay Area Plus and live streaming on the NBC Sports app. Greg Papa, Donte Whitner, Jeff Garcia, Matt Maiocco and Laura Britt will have everything you need to know from the 49ers’ game in Kansas City.