The 49ers dropped to 0-5 in an overtime loss to the Colts on Sunday and a couple of their players spent more time than usual watching the action from the sideline.
Linebacker Navorro Bowman missed just a handful of snaps in the first four games of the season, but dropped to just over 76 percent of the snaps while rotating with Brock Coyle and Ray-Ray Armstrong. Running back Carlos Hyde saw his playing time cut to 32 snaps while undrafted rookie Matt Breida got 34 in what coach Kyle Shanahan said was a decision to go with the “hot hand.”
“That wasn’t injury-related,” Hyde said, via the Sacramento Bee. “That was just the coach’s call. … I don’t like it, but my boy, Matt, he’s a good back. So he did a good job going in there and making plays and stuff.”
Bowman had a similar take.
“We had a conversation and, uh, I don’t know — they’re doing what they want to do and, I don’t know. I don’t like it,” Bowman said. “No one likes coming out of the game, but I’m a team player.”
Breida was certainly the more productive back, gaining 49 yards on 10 carries while Hyde had just 11 yards on eight carries. Bowman had 10 tackles while Armstrong had an interception to go with six tackles and Coyle was credited with two tackles and a half-sack.
Bowman and Hyde aren’t the first veterans to fall out of favor following coaching changes and 0-5 teams owe it to themselves to try everything and anything to get things pointed in the right direction so this may not be the last lineup change the 49ers make in the near future.