The San Francisco 49ers have struggled to get much of anything going, but the past couple weeks, wide receiver Dante Pettis has started to emerge. He had four receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown in Week 12, and he followed that up with a career high five receptions for 129 yards and two touchdowns.
That latter performance is getting Pettis some recognition this week. He has been nominated for the Pepsi Rookie of the Week award. This is a fan-voted award, but it is still cool to see him getting recognized for excellence.
Other nominees include Denver Broncos running back Phillip Lindsay (157 total yards, two touchdowns), New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (146 total yards), Los Angeles Chargers safety Derwin James (three tackles, one interception), and Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (366 total yards, two touchdowns). My guess is Lindsay gets the win after a big performance in a win, but make sure and vote here.
Pettis benefited from some garbage time numbers, but he is performing, and that’s all we can ask in an otherwise lost season. The 49ers final four games are a brutal stretch against some high quality defenses, so there could be a decent amount of garbage time coming up.
This weekend, Marquise Goodwin is expected back after missing the past two games while dealing with family issues. Pettis has gotten the most playing time when Goodwin has been absent. On Monday, head coach Kyle Shanahan said Pettis has played all three receiver positions at different points this season, and can move as needed.
“Dante has done all three this year and we’ve had to change him around each week. That’s why this was the first week where all guys got to stay at the same spots. But, Dante has the skill set to do all three of them. Quise, we prefer him outside the numbers, but he can go inside too. He knows the offense well enough that if Quise gets back this week we have some options with him too.”
Pettis likely has earned additional work this coming weekend against the Denver Broncos, but I am curious to see how his snaps are affected by the potential return of Goodwin.