Photo by Evan Habeeb of USA Today Sports

Photo by Evan Habeeb of USA Today Sports


The San Francisco 49ers opened the 2014 preseason with a 23-3 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Let's take a look at the bad and the good:

Bad:

Mike Purcell: With the loss of Glenn Dorsey to a torn biceps and Ian Williams yet to practice in training camp the 49ers had the 2013 undrafted free agent in the starting lineup. The results were not pretty. Purcell was pushed around like a blocking sled throughout the night. If he is the best option come week one in Dallas the 49ers are in trouble.

Jonathan Martin: Martin struggled mightily during his time as a starting tackle in Miami, but many thought a change of scenery could get him on track. If this game was any indication, it hasn't. On the 49ers first drive, Martin missed his block on a sweep to the right and his man made the tackle to keep the play to only a gain of 1 yard. In pass protection Martin was continually unable to hold his ground and pushed back into the QB.

Chris Borland: The third round draft pick started in place of Patrick Willis and struggled. On the first Ravens possession, an overaggressive Borland led to a 26 yard completion on a play action pass from Joe Flacco to fullback Kyle Juszcyk.

Jewel Hampton: With Frank Gore not playing Hampton was the backup running back, and he failed to take advantage. Hampton could not hold up in pass protection and to make matters worse he could not hold onto the football, dropping a screen pass from Blaine Gabbert that would have gained positive yardage.

Blaine Gabbert: Gabbert finished the night 3-11 for 20 yards and 1 interception. For the most part his throws were all over the place, and when he did make decent throws they were dropped. Chuck Jacobs dropped a Gabbert pass on a curl route that hit him between the numbers, and there was also the previously noted drop by Hampton.

Good:

Carlos Hyde: Hyde flashed during his brief performance, gaining 39 yards on 5 carries including a 19 yard burst around the left side. Sure this was week 1 of the preseason, but if Hyde can continue to improve throughout the preseason the 49ers will have quite the 1-2 punch in the backfield.

Vance McDonald: The second year tight struggled as a rookie and his performance throughout camp so far has been targeted as a concern by some. Not on this night. McDonald was targeted twice early on and responded with receptions of 16 and 7 yards.

Bruce Ellington: Whether he was taking a kick return or making a reception Ellington flashed every time he was on the field. Ellington started the night with a 32 yard kickoff return, and followed that up later with a 30 yard return. As a receiver the fourth round pick finished the night as the 49ers leading receiver with 35 yards on 3 receptions. In Ellington it appears that the 49ers have the steal of the draft.

Tank Carradine and Quinton Dial: The 2013 draft picks saw their first extensive game action as 49ers after missing most of last season due to injury, and they did not disappoint. Both held their own in the run game, and were a definite upgrade over Demarcus Dobbs and Tony Jerod-Eddie on the pass rush in this game. Carradine was able to get a sack on Tyrod Taylor, while Dial came away with a forced fumble.