NYJ-SF grades: Running backs lead way in Jets' OT win over 49ers
New York Jets 23, San Francisco 49ers 17
Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from the New York Jets’ 23-17 Week 14 overtime victory over the San Francisco 49ers:
Quarterback grade: Bryce Petty, 53.6
New York searching for a fixture at quarterback
To be fair to the Baylor alum, Jets QB Bryce Petty, play at the position—league-wide—dipped well below expectations for many of the NFL’s superstar signal-callers (i.e. Drew Brees, Russell Wilson, Cam Newton, Ben Roethlisberger, etc.) this week. However, each of those individuals have proven beyond any reason of a doubt that better days lie ahead. For Petty, an opportunity to lead the Jets’ offense into Santa Clara to face a bottom-five defense ended with a victory—but one that can be attributed to surrounding factors.
Petty’s grade currently sits in the bottom-third of the 23 quarterbacks that have played in Week 14 (at the time of publishing for this grade recap). The least-impressive takeaway from the game proved to be Petty’s ineffectiveness when provided with a clean pocket or when making decisions within 2.5 seconds. The Jets’ offensive line provided him with a clean pocket on two-thirds of all dropbacks, and he produced a mere 6.6 yards per attempt. Petty’s QB rating rose from 64.8 up to 95.8 when holding the ball for 2.6 seconds or more, speaking to his ability to work through his progressions; on the down side, such dropbacks led to each of the six times he would be sacked.
Top offensive grades:
C Wesley Johnson, 90.4
RT Brent Qvale, 82.8
HB Bilal Powell, 81.0
LG James Carpenter, 79.2
RG Brian Winters, 76.9
Next man up in the backfield
The path to victory for the Jets was ultimately paved by an overwhelmingly dominant performance by most of the offensive line and a 2016 breakout game for RB Bilal Powell. Incumbent RB Matt Forte left the game early with a knee injury, and Powell stepped in to average 5 yards per carry, 3.76 yards after contact per attempt—third-best in the league for Week 14 thus far—seven missed tackles, and 10 plays of perfect pass protection; Powell also secured each of his five targeted passes. Powell would end the game with a 19-yard touchdown run in overtime, and a great deal of his gratitude is most certainly directed toward C Wesley Johnson, who earned the game’s highest run-blocking grade (91.5).
Top defensive grades:
LB David Harris, 89.9
CB Justin Burris, 84.5
CB Darrelle Revis, 83.5
ED Sheldon Richardson, 77.5
CB Marcus Williams, 74.9
Secondary covers for unusually poor run defense
On a day when 49ers RB Carlos Hyde simply shredded the Jets on the ground, the secondary stepped forward to completely contain QB Colin Kaepernick, despite losing CB Buster Skrine and S Marcus Gilchrist to early injuries. While the 2016 season has been a forgettable one for CB Darrelle Revis, he did not allow a single reception on 29 snaps in coverage after allowing just the NFL’s 59th-best yards per coverage snap (1.40) through Week 13. ILB David Harris—who came into the game with the NFL’s 12th-best combined tackle efficiency (13.2)—limited three-of-four coverage receptions to 5 yards or less, easily leading all defenders in the game with a 90.5 run-defense grade, and accounted for a team-high four defensive stops.
Quarterback grade: Colin Kaepernick, 67.8
Another so-so performance from Kaepernick
San Francisco QB Colin Kaepernick completed one-of-six passing attempts greater 9 yards, averaged 1.4 yards per target when under pressure, and 2.0 yards per attempt when facing a four-man defensive front. A partial excuse can be made for the University of Nevada-product benefiting from the explosive output on the ground from RB Carlos Hyde, but that line of reasoning falls short when considering his complete inability to display any sort of passing accuracy—when his offense desperately needed him—following a solid first quarter.
Top offensive grades:
HB Carlos Hyde, 75.9
RT Trenton Brown, 72.5
RG Andrew Tiller, 71.0
WR Jeremy Kerley, 69.6
HB Shaun Draughn, 67.6
Healthy Carlos Hyde making most of opportunity versus Jets
Many of the issues with the 49ers’ recent offense output could be pinpointed on the two-week absence of RB Carlos Hyde. After tattooing the Jets with 196 rushing yards on 19 carries, the finger will be pointed elsewhere. Despite losing a fumble, the former Ohio State Buckeye would be the easy favorite for player of the game honors had San Francisco successfully held the victory. Hyde produced the NFL’s top elusive rating from Week 14 after averaging an astounding 8.0 yards after contact per attempt and collecting 78.1 percent of his yardage on runs of 15-plus yards.
Top defensive grades:
CB Jimmie Ward, 93.8
DI DeForest Buckner, 82.8
SS Jaquiski Tartt, 78.1
ED Ahmad Brooks, 74.1
CB Tramaine Brock, 73.7
49ers defense falls apart late
The 49ers lost their 12th game of the season, well on their way to collecting one of the top-three selections in next seasons’ draft, but still came away from the defeat with performances on defense that speak well for their future. Headlining that list of positives, CB Jimmie Ward nearly submitted a flawless performance in coverage after the third-year Northern Illinois-product permitted an 0.88-yard average on 41 snaps in coverage—equating to a 25.5 passer rating allowed, five defensive stops, two pass breakups, and an interception on the Jets’ first pass of the game. The other standout defensive performance came from rookie DeForest Buckner, who earned his highest grade to date (82.8) by way of sacking the quarterback twice, adding another hit, and topping all defenders with an impressive seven defensive stops.
PFF Game-Ball Winner: Bilal Powell, RB, Jets
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