Snap count: In first game without Bowman, Coyle struggles to fill void

Snap count: In first game without Bowman, Coyle struggles to fill void

The release of veteran linebacker NaVorro Bowman forced Brock Coyle onto the field for every defensive snap of the 49ers’ 26-24 loss Sunday to Washington.

Coyle and free safety Jimmie Ward played all 74 defensive plays for the 49ers' defense.

Coyle struggled in pass coverage while making the start in Bowman’s old position. According to Pro Football Focus, Coyle allowed six catches on seven passes he defended for 77 yards and a touchdown.

Fellow inside linebacker Ray-Ray Armstrong also had his difficulties, allowing catches on all five targets for 136 yards.

Rookie cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon also saw his most playing time on the season, as he rotated into the game at various times to replace starters Dontae Johnson and Rashard Robinson. Witherspoon played 34 snaps.

Eric Reid was cleared to play, but saw action on just 10 plays, as Jaquiski Tartt held onto his starting job at strong safety for at least another week.

Rookie defensive lineman Solomon Thomas played more than any other 49ers defensive lineman and he responded with a strong game. Thomas was on the field for 68 of the 49ers’ 74 defensive plays. He recorded his second sack of the season and have five run stops, according to PFF.

Here is a look at the 49ers’ playing time on offense, defense and special teams:

(72 plays)
Quarterback – C.J. Beathard 54, Brian Hoyer 18
Running back – Carlos Hyde 56, Matt Breida 17, Raheem Mostert 1
Wide receiver – Marquise Goodwin 61, Pierre Garçon 60, Trent Taylor 44, Aldrick Robinson 15, Victor Bolden 3
Tight end – George Kittle 66, Garrett Celek 30, Logan Paulsen 3, Cole Hikutini 2
Offensive line – Joe Staley 72, Trent Brown 72, Daniel Kilgore 72, Brandon Fusco 72, Laken Tomlinson 72, Garry Gilliam 2

(74 plays)
Defensive line – Solomon Thomas 68, DeForest Buckner 61, Earl Mitchell 49, Xavier Cooper 32, Arik Armstead 22, D.J. Jones 18, Aaron Lynch 18, Elvis Dumervil 15
Linebacker – Brock Coyle 74, Ray-Ray Armstrong 61, Eli Harold 48, Elijah Lee 4, Mark Nzeocha 2
Cornerback – Dontae Johnson 56, Rashard Robinson 53, K’Waun Williams 41, Ahkello Witherspoon 34
Safety – Jimmie Ward 74, Jaquiski Tartt 73, Eric Reid 10, Adrian Colbert 1

(30 plays)
Lee 21, Colbert 19, Harold 19, Paulsen 19, Mostert 19, Nzeocha 18, Celek 16, Witherspoon 16, Bradley Pinion 14, Bolden 13, Pita Taumoepenu 12, Johnson 12, Kyle Nelson 11, Tartt 9, Jones 9, Hikutini 8, Ward 7, Robbie Gould 6, Coyle 6, Breida 6, Mitchell 6, Thomas 6, Buckner 6, Reid 6, Zane Beadles 5, Staley 5, Brown 5, Kilgore 5, Fusco 5, Armstrong 4, Gilliam 4, R.Robinson 4, Taylor 4, Armstead 3, Tomlinson 1


WR Kendrick Bourne
CB Leon Hall
DB Dexter McCoil
FB Kyle Juszczyk (back)
LB Reuben Foster (ankle)
LB Dekoda Watson (groin)
OL Erik Magnuson

Tony Romo: Jimmy Garoppolo 'cannot be in a better situation'

Tony Romo: Jimmy Garoppolo 'cannot be in a better situation'

Sure, Jimmy Garoppolo would have liked to have played more during his first four and a half seasons with the Patriots. But learning under Tom Brady and Bill Belichick isn't all that bad.

What he learned in New England set him up for success with Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers.

At least that's how former Cowboys quarterback and current CBS analyst Tony Romo looks at it.

“You cannot be in a better situation early on than Jimmy,” Romo said. “He’s been with some of the best minds you could ever be around in the National Football League. He got the foundation of Bill Belichick, who probably set his routine for success for the rest of his career. He was around Tom Brady for three-plus years, learning through osmosis if nothing else. Tom’s ability at the line of scrimmage to do something, and then for Jimmy to go back and study the how and why … I am sure Jimmy saw so much subtlety that took Brady years to learn through experience. Jimmy could just see it in practice and he’s like, Oh, now I see why he did that.You get that ability to improve at a much faster rate than you otherwise would have on your own. It’s really a priceless thing for young quarterbacks to be behind a great quarterback," Romo told Peter King for his Football Morning in America column.

As for Shanahan and his abilities as a play-caller, Romo had high praise for the second-year head coach.

“And now with Kyle Shanahan, he’s getting an offensive genius. I don’t throw that term around lightly—Kyle really is. I would argue there’s three or four guys in the league who really separate themselves as head coaches or offensive coordinators getting chunk plays. You’re dropping back and you’re having a guy come open 20, 25 yards downfield. That’s a huge load off a quarterback’s shoulders for always having to produce on third down to move the chains. That’s where Kyle really separates himself," Romo told King.

49ers TE Garrett Celek pinpoints exactly when he knew Jimmy Garoppolo was a keeper

49ers TE Garrett Celek pinpoints exactly when he knew Jimmy Garoppolo was a keeper

Jimmy Garoppolo had five games last season to impress his new 49ers teammates. But according to one of his teammates, it didn't take very long for the quarterback to prove himself.

Tight end Garrett Celek was recently asked by Peter King when he realized Garoppolo was a keeper.

"The first time he got in the huddle with us," Celek told King this week's Football Morning in America column.

“I’d said maybe two words to him. I didn’t know what kind of guy he was. He came into the huddle for the very first time, and he talked to us and called the play like he’d been in there 10 years. It was awesome,” Celek elaborated.

In those five games with the 49ers, Garoppolo put on a show for his coaches, teammates and 49ers fans. He completed 120 of 178 passes for 1,560 yards and seven touchdowns. The 49ers won all five games. His performance in those five games earned him a massive pay day this past offseason. The former second-round pick signed a five-year, $137.5 million contract in February.