We transition from “Anthony Davis on a Segway LOL” news to something concrete about Davis, something that actually matters: blocking! Don’t worry, we’ll get back to news about “bags of dung” and dubious hangnail claims soon enough, but if the 49ers’ offensive coordinator is going to make a grandiose statement the least we can do is give it a little play so it isn’t all silliness, GIFs and Twitter pouting around these parts.
“The guys had some nicks and bruises and whatnot, and ultimately they just took over the game,” said Greg Roman today when looking back on the 49ers’ 32-20 win over the Arizona Cardinals.
“Our right tackle, Anthony Davis, he had the best game he’s had since I’ve been here, in all phases.”
Since no one has done a better job quantifying the performances of offensive linemen for laypeople than Pro Football Focus, I once again leaned on that valuable crutch to see if they agreed with Roman’s assessment.
In a way, PFF did agree. Davis scored a 4.8 (1.2 as a pass blocker, 4.1 for his run blocking, -0.5 in penalties), which is tremendous for any player and tied him with Joe Staley for the highest score of anyone on the team. Yes, even higher than Vernon Davis, who scored a 3.0. But PFF has scored Anthony Davis higher in past games he’s played with Roman at the controls.
- 2011: 5.3 in the 49ers’ 20-3 win over the Steelers
- 2012: 5.5 in the 49ers’ overtime loss to the Rams; 5.8 in Week 17 against the Cardinals
Davis was docked in the penalty category in the 49ers’ most recent game because he was called for clipping in the second quarter. Joe Staley scored 0.5 points for not committing a penalty, so if Davis had avoided that flag it stands to reason that he would’ve scored a 5.8 — tying the highest score of his career. By the way, Davis also scored a 5.3 in Week 17 of his rookie season (before Roman arrived) against … wait for it … the Cardinals. Davis clearly loves facing Arizona.
More PFF/49ers togetherness
“(The Cardinals) were doing some things toward the end of the game that might be called extreme in terms of stopping the run and it didn’t matter,” Roman said. “You don’t see that a whole lot in this league.”
Doing some charting of AZ game: The 18-play drive, on the last 8 runs, AZ had 9 or 10 in the box on every play, still couldn’t stop #49ers.
— Jeff Deeney (@PFF_Jeff) October 17, 2013
Of those last eight runs, five in a row were Gore rushing to the right. Those runs accounted for 22 yards and two first downs, setting up the 49ers with 1st-and-goal from the 9-yard line (from there they punched it in with consecutive runs up the middle by Bruce Miller and Kendall Hunter — Gore said after the game that he didn’t mind coming out for a “fresh” Hunter because he was tired).
Roman, who does a pretty good job at saying a lot of words without telling us much during his weekly press conferences, couldn’t contain his glee when looking back at the season’s best drive. He even made a rare reference to the days when he and Jim Harbaugh utilized the power running game at Stanford.
“Jim and I were saying it reminded us a little bit when we played USC, back in whatever year it was when we just were rolling the same play over and over and over again and the guys were getting better at it every time,” He said. “It’s a credit to the players on the field. When they’re doing that, calling the play’s pretty easy.”