The San Francisco 49ers offense has struggled to find consistency, but one area we have some improved play is when they go into a hurry-up offense. Last week, Brian Hoyer talked about the sense of urgency, and the notion of having a mindset that you’re down 21-0 from the start.
More players talked about the sense of urgency in the no-huddle this past week after the near-victory against Washington. The 49ers trailed 17-0, but turned things around and almost pulled out a stunning upset. As we saw in previous weeks, getting going in more no-huddle offense has seemed to offer some improved play.
The 49ers might be recognizing the value in running no-huddle. According to Pro Football focus, the 49ers have increased their no-huddle rate each of the last four weeks. In Week 2, they used no-huddle two percent of the time. In the four weeks since, that number has increased to 12 percent, then 14, then 17, and this past week against Washington, 20.
On Wednesday, Shanahan said that the use of no huddle often is more gut than anything. If he thinks the defense is on its heels and looking tired, he is more willing to attack.
This past Sunday, C.J. Beathard was six of seven on hurry-up attempts, throwing for 112 yards and one touchdown, with a perfect 158.3 passer rating. Chris Biderman asked Shanahan about the increased use of no-huddle, and some of the success Beathard had in it.
“We plan on doing it every week. I think it just happened, there’s a difference between two minute drives and then schematically going no huddle. In the game last week, we had a two minute drive at the end of the second quarter and then we had a couple of them at the end of the game trying to get back in that game. But, besides that, like everyone in the league, everyone does that when you get at the end of the half or a game. But, we always incorporate no huddle. We do it randomly. We try to jump in and out of it. I always felt, we’ve done it throughout the year. When you stay out there longer, you guys will notice it more. When you quickly go no huddle if you don’t convert a third down, sometimes you’ll miss it that we were even going no huddle. But, the more we can stay out there the more we can do it. It’s something I like to get in and out of. People talk about no huddle is about getting your defense gets the ball back too fast. Well, it’s about moving the chains. If you go no huddle and you go three-and-out very fast, yes that’s a lot faster than going three-and-out while huddling, but three-and-out is still three-and-out. What’s the best way to go on drives? If jumping in no huddle allows you to go on a longer drive, even if you do go into a huddle, that helps the defense.”