49ers Who Need to Step Up in Week 5

Image Credit: Andrew Giesemann

Matt Breida

C.J. Beathard can’t do it alone. This isn’t a call out of Breida underperforming, but more of a call out to Kyle Shanahan to allow this young stud running back to get more touches and open the field up for Beathard , whether this means more quick short passes to help elude the pass rush, or more runs to balance the offense. Breida is currently third in the NFL in yards rushing (313), but has around half the attempts of the two rushers in from of him (Ezekiel Elliott and Todd Gurley II). Breida is nursing a knee injury, but his practice schedule tells us he is probably good to go this Sunday.

Pierre Garcon and Marquise Goodwin

The Arizona Cardinals are ranked 12th in the NFL in yards passing, giving up 236 per game. Garcon and Goodwin have combined for 16 receptions, 192 yards, and 1 touchdown (11/141/0 and 5/54/1 stat lines, respectively). If the 49ers offense is going to put up bigger numbers than their defense is allowing, these two wide receivers, or at least one, needs to have a big game. With Dante Pettis possibly not playing, these two need to lead by example.

DeForest Buckner

After a strong first two games, Buckner has been double-teamed by offenses into relative quietness. He will face double teams his whole career, or at least until the 49ers are able to put a quality edge rusher next to him. This is something he must overcome. As someone who was nicknamed “DPOY” in the off season by his teammates, he too needs to lead by example and show the rest of his defense brethren how to tackle. He hasn’t played poorly per se, but he must do more for the current defense to succeed.

Reuben Foster

The second-year stud has been somewhat underwhelming after returning from his two-game suspension. He has missed way too many tackles so far and has been beat in coverage a few times. Foster has the talent and physical ability to be an All-Pro linebacker for the next ten years, but right now it appears his focus may be keeping him from diagnosing the opponent’s plays as early as fans are used to him doing. Foster must neutralize David Johnson Jr. this Sunday if the 49ers are going to beat the last place Arizona Cardinals.

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