since im really into stats, and i like to know exactly how players on my team are doing overall, i looked into the individual stats of our OL to see just how theyve been playing compared to the rest of the NFL. just watching games every week and forming an opinion of what you see can be misleading.
a few notable surprises, both good and bad among the 49ers starting OL this year.
C- Eric Heitmann holds down an otherwise poor OL, being the 14th best pass blocker, the 16th best run blocker among Centers, and committing only 1 penalty this season, which ties him for 2nd best in the NFL among C with 800+ snaps. he gave up 2 sacks, 1 QB hit, and 10 QB pressures. 2 sacks for a C isnt so hot, but 1 hit is up with the pro bowl type guys, and the pressures are middle of the road. overall hes right about in the middle of the NFL.
G- Chilo Rachal actually had the better statistical year than David Baas. but neither were worth talking about. Rachal ranked decently in pass blocking, while Baas was a hair above average in pass blocking. Rachal beat Baas again in run blocking, but both were absolutely AWFUL. well below league average. 4 penalties for Rachal, 3 for Baas, so at least they didnt kill us there. not amazing, but decent for the position. top 10 in giving up sacks, both of them, middle of the pack in giving up QB hits and pressures.
overall id say we give them one more season. the pass blocking has been decent this year surprisingly, but the reason why Gore hasnt been consistent this season is now obvious. they cant run block to save their lives. poor Frank, and STILL a 1000 yard rusher with possibly the NFL's worst run blocking line.
T- Both Joe Staley and Barry Sims have done a good job pass blocking, but both, like the Guards, have been very bad run blockers. Staley has committed 0 penalties this year, and Sims has 2. overall our whole line is one of the most disciplined units, penalty wise. thats what, 10 penalties on our entire starting OL this season combined? well, and then theres Adam Snyder with 5 penalties by himself, and giving up an NFL high for all OL, 10 sacks this year. Staley has given up just 3 sacks (in 8 games), and Sims only 1 the entire season. both Staley and Sims have been good at preventing QB hits and pressures as well.
so to sum up the 2009 Niners OL? slightly better than average pass blocking, and terrible run blocking. this kind of surprised me. we also dont commit many penalties, and for the most part have kept pass rushers off of Alex Smith. which means, Alex Smith hasnt been held down by his OL as much as i thought, and that Adam Snyder needs to be cut and replaced. hes the only real ugly pock mark on our line for both run/pass blocking and penalties. oh, btw when Pashos did play, he was solid overall.
in order of pass blocking success this season from best to worst in the time they played, (space denotes separation from decent to crappy):
1. Barry Sims
2. Joe Staley
3. Tony Pashos
4. Eric Heitmann
5. Chilo Rachal
6. David Baas
7. Tony Wragge
8. Adam Snyder
and in order of run blocking:
1. Eric Heitmann
2. Tony Pashos
3. Tony Wragge
4. Adam Snyder
5. Barry Sims
6. Joe Staley
7. Chilo Rachal
8. David Baas
Also, something to point out. our offensive players have a total of 47 penalties this season. Vernon Davis and Josh Morgan make up 17 of them. over 1/3 of our entire offenses penalties have come from those 2. youre KILLING us here guys. come on.
so in conclusion, maybe it is best to change over to a more pass friendly scheme. the unit we have right now succeeds alot more at pass blocking than run blocking. obviously having Gore, its a big blow to the team not to be able to allow him to be that superstar talent, but for now were better off throwing more than running.
i say we draft a RT, since Sims cant play well there, and will retire in a couple years. and then maybe a 2nd or 3rd round G to replace Baas. and sign someone. ANYONE, to replace Adam Snyder. we probably wouldve been better off with a DL playing in place of Snyder. i dont see how it couldve been worse.