The San Francisco 49ers offense is not good. I realize that might be a shocking statement to some, but yea, it’s not so good. The offensive line has done some solid work, particularly in pass protection, and Carlos Hyde is still a tackle-breaking machine, but overall, this offense has plenty of problems.
On Monday, Chip Kelly was asked what Blaine Gabbert needs to do to get better in this offense. Kelly offered this:
“I think the entire offense, I think sometimes everybody keeps pointing specifically to the quarterback, but it’s not like the offensive line’s playing tremendous, the running back are doing everything, the wide receivers are doing everything and we’re just not getting good quarterback play. I think it’s the entire group offensively. We need to convert. Again, what do we need to do as a group better? We had eight shots at third-and-five or less that we need to convert on third down so we can stay on the field and continue to keep drives alive.”
People point to the quarterback position because it is the most high profile position on offense, and of course, Blaine Gabbert is not particularly good at QB things. Maybe he’s better than he was in Jacksonville, but that bar is so low, an ant could barely limbo under it.
Chris Biderman took a look at the wide receiver position, and the potential need to shake things up. Chip Kelly talked about Rod Streater and Aaron Burbridge developing, and potentially getting more plays as the season progresses.
Blaine Gabbert was throwing short much of the day in Week 3. I took a quick look at the passes, and we’ll have more on it, but suffice to say, it was a mix of bad decisions, decisions made too early, and problems with receivers getting open. The coaches film does reveal that generally speaking, there was not a lot available to Gabbert. That doesn’t remove all the blame, but it does add at least a little context.
Rather than say one came before the other, it’s probably a little bit easier to just point out that most things are a mess in the passing game. There is a talent issue in play right now, at quarterback, wide receiver, and tight end. Add in inconsistent play by the 49ers offensive line in the ground game, and it adds up to a lot of problems that are going to be tough to fix this season. Maybe new receivers will be the difference. Maybe changing up the quarterback position will be the difference. Maybe play calling will be the difference. I don’t know right now.