WR Dante Pettis - San Francisco 49ers
|6-1, 192||Born: 10-23-1995||College: Washington||Drafted: Round 2, pick 2018|
2019 Week 1 vs TB (1 / 1 / 7 / 0 rec)
Not only did Pettis play only two snaps. Those snaps didn't come until the second quarter, and they came on consecutive plays. His day was literally "stand on the sideline, catch one pass, block one guy, go back and stand on the sideline."
2019 Week 3 vs PIT (5 / 4 / 20 / 1 rec)
This game may have tipped Kyle Shanahan's hand on his intended usage of Pettis: He started and finished both halves, but was mostly off the field in between in both. Pettis' game-winning touchdown was actually a bit of redemption, as it required him to aggressively come back to the ball to make the catch; something he didn't do on two prior targets, one an incompletion and another an interception.
2019 Week 5 vs CLE (3 / 1 / 11 / 0 rec)
On the plus side, Pettis logged his own personal best snap percentage for this season, as well as the highest snap percentage among San Francisco wideouts in this game. Unfortunately, he squandered the opportunity for a jog-in touchdown when he dropped a pinpoint-accurate throw from Jimmy Garoppolo on a quick slant inside the Browns' 30-yard line.
2019 Week 6 vs LAR (6 / 3 / 45 / 0 rec)
As usual, Pettis got the start and rotated evenly with Marquise Goodwin and Deebo Samuel. His first big play, a 6-yard reception with 13 yards of run after the catch, came on a quick out against Marcus Peters and set up the 49ers' first touchdown. Pettis also set up what should have been another touchdown midway through the third quarter. On this play, he ran a seam route against the Rams' Cover-3 zone and made a leaping catch at the 2-yard line. Two plays later, he nearly scored a touchdown on a Dwight Clark-esque catch attempt of what looked like a throwaway at the back of the end zone, but Pettis' second foot came down out of bounds.
2019 Week 7 vs WAS (2 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
Given the playing conditions, it's no surprise that Pettis' only target of note was Jimmy Garoppolo's third quarter interception. On the play, Pettis beat cornerback Quinton Dunbar deep with a beautiful double-move. Unfortunately, as is his wont, Pettis didn't attack the ball in the air. So when the wind knocked down Garoppolo's pass, safety Troy Apke was able to pick off the underthrow.
2019 Week 8 vs CAR (3 / 1 / 5 / 0 rec)
This game highlighted (or more like lowlighted?) what seems to be wrong with Pettis this season. His first target came on a deep out route where he was late out of his break, so Jimmy Garoppolo's throw was out of reach. His second target came on a swing pass out of the backfield. This time, Garoppolo lead him upfield, but Pettis stayed flat on his route, so the ball fell incomplete after Pettis made a half-hearted stab at it. Finally, on Pettis' third target, an actual completion he gamely went down to the ground to catch, Garoppolo's throw was again timed incorrectly, this time low and behind. It seems clear that these two aren't on the same page at all.
2019 Week 9 vs ARI (1 / 1 / 21 / 1 rec)
Pettis didn't even see the field until the end of the first quarter. On his lone target and reception (and touchdown), the 49ers lined up in a bunch right formation against Arizona's man-to-man defense. Pettis ran a deep corner route into the endzone, but both Patrick Peterson and Byron Murphy, Jr., followed Emmanuel Sanders on his short out route. By the time Peterson realized it, it was too late.
2019 Week 10 vs SEA (3 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
Pettis saw increased playing time due to Emmanuel Sanders' injury, but he might as well have remained on the sideline. On two of his three incomplete targets, Pettis made a passive play on a catchable pass. On one, a potential 3rd-and-long conversion late in the first half, he waited for the ball to get to him, which allowed a defender to knock it away at the last moment. Then, on the 49ers final drive, Pettis flattened out his route away from a potential hit and alligator-armed a ball that Jimmy Garoppolo had placed ahead of him and farther downfield.
2018 Week 1 vs MIN (5 / 2 / 61 / 1 rec)
As was telegraphed during San Francisco's third preseason game, Pettis assumed Marquise Goodwin's role when he left the game, up to and including being the lone wide receiver in 22 personnel formations (i.e., two running backs and two tight ends). The highlight reels will show his improvisational, acrobatic touchdown catch with the 49ers down 20-6 early in the third quarter, but the (other) hidden variable going forward is that Kyle Shanahan used Pettis for jet-sweep play action four times in the first half after not using Goodwin at all in that capacity.
2018 Week 2 vs DET (2 / 1 / 35 / 0 rec)
Pettis only had two targets despite playing eight out of every nine snaps because he had a hard time beating the man-to-man coverage. Of concern is that he was stifled by Teez Tabor and Nevin Lawson, not perennial Pro Bowler Darius Slay. Pettis' lone reception resulted from one of the few instances he defeated said coverage. It was a post-corner route that spun Tabor around when he broke outside, thereby creating several yards of separation.
2018 Week 10 vs NYG (6 / 4 / 12 / 0 rec)
In a surprise turn of events, Pettis, not Trent Taylor and not Richie James, got the start and played the vast majority of snaps in three-wide personnel. He didn't do much with the opportunity, as only one of his six targets gained more than 4 yards, but there's not much opportunity to be had as the 49ers slot receiver. Like Taylor experienced before him, Pettis mainly ran short routes: bubble screens, quick outs, short comebacks, etc.
2018 Week 12 vs TB (7 / 4 / 77 / 1 rec)
Predictably given he replaced Marquise Goodwin, Pettis was San Francisco's primary downfield wide receiver, as evidenced by his team-leading 15.0 average depth of target. The shortest of his four receptions went for 13 yards and a touchdown. On the play, he used an outside fake at the line of scrimmage to leave cornerback Carlton Davis in the dust on a quick slant route. from there, he was wide open for a walk-in score because Tampa Bay was playing man-to-man across the field and their single-high free safety was too far from the catch point to make a play. Elsewhere, his two catches of 20-plus yards came on crisply executed deep routes in the middle of the field against off-man coverage.
2018 Week 13 vs SEA (7 / 5 / 129 / 2 rec, 1 / -2 / 0 rush)
The most important thing to know about Pettis' fantasy output in this game is that all but one of his targets came during the second half with San Francisco down three-plus scores. That said, more than any other Niner, Pettis was actually able to make the most of the situation individually. His first target of the second half resulted in his first touchdown of the game. On the play, he sat down in front of Shaquill Griffin's zone coverage, stiff-armed Griffin into oblivion at the 10-yard line, and then cut outside to avoid oncoming tacklers and squeeze inside the pylon. (Hat-tip to Kyle Juszczyk for a timely block along the sideline.) His next catch, for 14 yards and a first down, was another example of understanding how to find the soft spot in a zone, this time on a deep cross. Both of those were a mere prelude to his 75-yard touchdown catch, which was about as Goodwin-like as it gets in this offense. Pettis ran a post route between cornerback Tre Flowers and safety Bradley McDougald that would have only been a 20-yard gain if not for Pettis' speed. He caught the ball in stride and simply ran away from three defenders, even after stumbling when Flowers clipped his heels at the Seattle 40-yard line.
2018 Week 14 vs DEN (7 / 3 / 49 / 1 rec)
In what may be a harbinger of things to come, Pettis started and played Marquise Goodwin's role in the offense despite Goodwin being available (and actually playing). His first two targets fell incomplete, one dropped and one batted down at the line of scrimmage, but his next two produced San Francisco's second touchdown of the day, extending their lead to 20-0 going into halftime. Working at the goal line against cornerback Isaac Yiadom on both, Pettis drew a pass interference penalty on Yiadom, and then easily beat him on a fade route to score. There was another drop among his next few targets, but he atoned for that by producing a big play to get the 49ers out of bad field position just as they were doing their best to "achieve" another come-from-ahead loss. On the play, he adroitly found a hole in Denver's zone, caught the ball 13 yards downfield, and ran for 18 additional yards.
2018 Week 15 vs SEA (5 / 5 / 83 / 0 rec)
The primary memory of Pettis among people who watched this game live is likely going to be him being the beneficiary of a suspect pass interference call that, for all intents and purposes, resulted in San Francisco's game-winning field goal. But his performance was so much more than that, as it cemented the truth of what has been written in this space the past several weeks. First and foremost, with a healthy Marquise Goodwin once again being relegated to the bench despite Pierre Garcon's absence, it's now abundantly clear that Pettis present and future in this offense is to play the Goodwin role, not the Garcon role. Second, he once again demonstrated a beyond-his-years adroitness for route-running against both man-to-man and zone. As the former is far tougher, it's worth noting that, on his 30-yard catch in the fourth quarter, Pettis subtly faked an inside move out of the slot that created more than enough separation from cornerback Shaquill Griffin on his go route.
2018 Week 16 vs CHI (5 / 3 / 21 / 0 rec)
When Pettis left the game due to a knee injury early in the second quarter, he had been the target on a full 50 percent of Nick Mullens' passes. Unfortunately, they were either short targets that didn't have much promise or deep targets that were deflected at the line of scrimmage. His longest reception came on a quick slant against the off-man coverage of Kyle Fuller.