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PFF’s best and worst graded 49ers players vs. Rams, plus snap counts

Jan 8, 2024 at 10:33 AM--

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The San Francisco 49ers finished the 2023 season with a 12-5 record after a 21-20 loss against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 18. Today, Pro Football Focus released its grades from the game. Which Niners played well, and who has more work to do with the team's first playoff game approaching?

Below are Pro Football Focus' five highest-graded 49ers players on offense against the Rams.

Below are the five highest-graded 49ers players on defense.

Below are the three lowest-graded 49ers players on offense.

Below are the three lowest-graded 49ers players on defense.

Quick Takeaways

With the 49ers having already clinched the top seed and home-field advantage in the NFC playoffs, the starters didn't receive much playing time in the regular-season finale.

Wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk earned the game's highest grade at 89.9 while playing only 23 snaps. He finished the game with three receptions for 25 yards. The game's leading receiver, Chris Conley, finished with three receptions for 69 yards, but a drop reduced his overall grade to 64.5.

Tackle Matt Pryor was the highest-graded offensive lineman, earning an 83.3 mark. Guards Ben Bartch and Aaron Banks rounded out the four highest-graded offensive players for the 49ers. Neither of the three allowed a single pressure throughout the game.

Sam Darnold started at quarterback, with the 49ers opting to rest Brock Purdy. Sunday was Darnold's first start since January 8, 2023. He completed 16 of his 26 passing attempts for 189 yards and one touchdown, earning a passer rating of 96.5 while adding seven rushes for 19 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Darnold's 73.0 overall grade is a season-high and his best mark since Week 16 of last season (74.4 vs. Lions) with the Carolina Panthers.

Tackle Trent Williams finished the game with a 56.1 overall grade, his second-lowest of the season (42.3 in Week 6 vs. Browns). Although, he played only 12 snaps, a small sample size for the future Hall of Fame offensive lineman.

Cornerback Isaiah Oliver earned the highest grade (74.0) among his defensive teammates. Oliver has earned a grade of 74.0 or higher in three of his last four games. He allowed six receptions for 29 yards to the Rams.

Darrell Luter Jr. was the team's second-highest-graded defensive back, earning a 71.6 mark from the analytics site. He didn't allow a catch in his 44 snaps. However, he was only targeted once. Luter's 71.6 overall grade was a season-high for the cornerback. Deommodore Lenoir was also only targeted once in his 23 snaps and did not allow a catch while earning a 69.7 overall grade.

Newly acquired defensive tackle Sebastian Joseph-Day played 33 snaps, earning his best grade (72.4) since Week 11 (73.8) while still with the Los Angeles Chargers. He was credited with five tackles and three stops against the Rams.

Safety Logan Ryan saw significant action for the second consecutive week, earning a season-high grade of 69.3. He allowed one catch for five yards.

Pro Bowl cornerback Charvarius Ward played 23 snaps, earning his career's worst grade (31.2). He allowed three catches for 37 yards and a touchdown on three targets.

Safety Tayler Hawkins, who hauled in the game's only interception, finished his NFL debut with a 31.2 overall grade. He allowed two catches for 46 yards on three targets while committing a penalty.

Snap Counts

61 - Aaron Banks (LG), Sam Darnold (QB), Spencer Burford (RG)
49 - Jaylon Moore (LT)
47 - Charlie Woerner (TE)
45 - Colton McKivitz (RT), Jake Brendel (C)
43 - Chris Conley (WR)
38 - Ronnie Bell (WR)
36 - Ray-Ray McCloud III (WR)
32 - Elijah Mitchell (RB)
27 - Jordan Mason (RB)
25 - Brayden Willis (TE)
23 - Brandon Aiyuk (WR)
20 - Deebo Samuel (WR)
16 - Ben Bartch (LG), Matt Pryor (LT)
14 - Kyle Juszczyk (FB)
12 - Trent Williams (LT)

67 - Isaiah Oliver (CB), Logan Ryan (FS), Tayler Hawkins (FS)
57 - Chase Young (DE)
55 - Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles (LB)
53 - Oren Burks (LB)
44 - Darrell Luter Jr. (CB), Kevin Givens (DT), Samuel Womack III (CB)
41 - Randy Gregory (LOLB)
38 - Javon Kinlaw (DT)
33 - Sebastian Joseph-Day (DT)
24 - Robert Beal Jr. (DE)
23 - Charvarius Ward (CB), Deommodore Lenoir (CB)
17 - Javon Hargrave (DT)
14 - Dee Winters (LB)
12 - Fred Warner (LB)
8 - Nick Bosa (DE)
6 - Clelin Ferrell (DE)

Special Teams
17 - Brayden Willis
14 - Darrell Luter Jr., Dee Winters
13 - Jalen Graham
12 - Jeremy McNichols, Robert Beal Jr., Tayler Hawkins
11 - Samuel Womack III
10 - Chris Conley
8 - Jake Moody (K)
7 - Charlie Woerner, Mitch Wishnowsky (P), Ronnie Bell, Taybor Pepper (LS)
6 - Ray-Ray McCloud III
5 - Isaiah Oliver, Jordan Mason, Oren Burks
4 - Aaron Banks, Ben Bartch, Colton McKivitz, Jaylon Moore, Matt Pryor, Spencer Burford
3 - Logan Ryan
2 - Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles, Javon Kinlaw, Kevin Givens, Randy Gregory
1 - Deommodore Lenoir, Fred Warner

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