49ers: Run-heavy attack leaves Crabtree frustrated
Prior to Sunday, Crabtree had been on the field for 72.7% of the team’s offensive snaps, on par with his 70.9% mark from 2012-13 (including postseason).
Crabtree played only 45 of 70 snaps (64.3%) on Sunday, but a look into the 49ers’ personnel packages explains the decrease in playing time.
The 49ers used a heavier-than-normal dose of 22 and 13 personnel (22 snaps total) and it’s usually Anquan Boldin or Brandon Lloyd as the lone WR in these run-heavy sets – not Crabtree. In fact, Crabtree has only played five of the team’s 82 snaps in 22 personnel all year. When the 49ers used two or more WRs on Sunday, he saw the field on 45 of 48 plays.
Despite a decrease in Crabtree’s productivity this season (his Yards per Route Run in 2014 is 1.40, down from 2.55 his last full season in 2012), Sunday’s lower snap count appears solely a result of the 49ers going back to the power run game that has made them successful in past seasons.