The San Francisco 49ers appear to finally have a right guard in place. After weeks of rotating Andrew Tiller and Jordan Devey, the 49ers have given Tiller every right guard snap the last two weeks. Although he has not been spectacular, Tiller has been significantly better than Devey. This past week against the Arizona Cardinals, Pro Football Focus graded Tiller at -0.9, including a -0.6 pass blocking grade, having given up three hurries. Through 11 games, they grade Tiller at +2.5 overall in 288 snaps, and Devey at -16.1 overall in 397 snaps. You don't need PFF grading to know Devey was a hot mess, but it certainly adds to the bigger picture.
The 49ers faced a lot of blitzing on Sunday, and Tiller had a chance to discuss that in a Monday media session. He also talked about how he improved his footwork, and what Shaun Draughn has brought to the 49ers.
On OL strides the last few weeks:
I feel like we're improving every week, but just gotta keep on improving. We gave up two sacks yesterday, a couple hits. Made some strides, but we still aren't where we need to be yet.
On difficulty of facing a lot of blitzes from Cardinals:
We knew coming into the game they would give us a lot of different exotic looks. I felt like we did a pretty good job with picking them up, but still gave up a couple hits, some sacks.
On whether improvement has been bigger in pass-blocking or run-blocking:
I feel like we're improving in both every week, run-blocking and pass-blocking. I mean we didn't get the rushing yardage that we wanted yesterday, we left a lot on the field, but I feel like we're making strides every week.
On if pass-blocking is more of a strength given nature of the games this season:
Yea, because we get into passing situations, we come out there, we don't put up points when we're supposed to, so we kind of getting into a passing game towards the end of the game. Just have to try to milk the clock and run the ball.
On rhythm of Shaun Draughn running behind the line:
Shaun runs hard. I like Shaun back there. He's a good back, he's a good back. I feel like he's getting into a groove. He's got our trust up front.
Pm surprise Draughn has bounced around so much:
Honestly, that's the first time I'd heard, I didn't know he's been on eight different teams, but he's a good back. A lot of teams passed up on him, that's their loss.
On if he knew of Draughn before his arrival:
No, I didn't know who he was [laugh]. I said, oh, this back is pretty good.
On fortune of finding Draughn given Hyde's injury:
Very fortunate, very fortunate.
On evolution of the season for him:
I mean, you just gotta keep on working. When things don't go the way as planned, just got to keep on working. It just happened, eventually. Now I'm starting.
On what he enjoys about starting:
On Trent Brown:
He's just soaking it all in. Just learning how to be a pro. He's a good dude, though.
On Week 12 officiating:
I'll pass on that one.
On what focus he had on pass blocking and feet coming out of college:
I just don't like being told I can't do something, so when they told me I can't pass block, I made that one of my main focus that I was gonna get better on, and that's what I've done.
On how to improve footwork:
Lose some weight. That helped.
On differences in technique:
We didn't really sit vertical like that in college. I've noticed I've been sitting a lot more vertical since I been in the league.
On Gabbert getting the ball out quickly:
Yea, that always helps the o-line, when he gets rid of the ball quickly. Don't give them a chance to get to the quarterback.
On Draughn's blocking:
He just sticks his face up in there, and he don't care who is blitzing. He's going to put his hat in there and he's gonna pick up that block. Yesterday, he had a lot of key blocks on pass protections.