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Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports


Chip Kelly explains why a strong running game has not helped the pass

Dec 28, 2016 at 10:54 AM--


The San Francisco 49ers rushing attack currently ranks fourth in the league averaging 130.5 yards per game. A large part of that was due to the production of running back Carlos Hyde, who was placed on injured reserve this week. Hyde was just 12 yards shy of becoming the 11th player in 49ers franchise history to rush for over 1,000 yards.

The 49ers passing attack ranks last in the NFL and averages just 181.3 yards per game. One would naturally think that a strong running game would assist with a passing game, but that has not been the case for the 49ers this season. Today, Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee asked 49ers head coach Chip Kelly why that was.

"I don't see the correlation," Kelly responded. "When you have people playing man coverage, the play-action means nothing. I've got you man-to-man so I don't care if you're running the ball or throwing the ball. I've got you man-to-man. If you throw a play-action pass and Richard Sherman's playing press-man on the receiver, he's not looking in the backfield. That doesn't have an effect.



"I think if you play zone teams that are vision and break teams and their eyes are always on the quarterback all the time, I think that would have an effect. When you play teams that play more man coverage, play-action pass doesn't really have a lot of effect because I'm not looking in the backfield at the run or the play-action pass because my job is to cover the receiver."

Kelly was then asked if it has an impact on playing against the pass rush. "Not really," Kelly answered. "Not the way people are teaching pass rush now. They're playing the run on the way to the quarterback. They're trying to charge up the field. You look at those four-down defenses with those defensive ends out there in a sprinter stance, they're running as fast as they can to get to the depth of the quarterback."

The 49ers will host the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday at Levi's Stadium with kickoff at 1:25 p.m. PT.



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