San Francisco 49ers: Regrading 2012 Rookies at the End of the Regular Season

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San Francisco 49ers: Regrading 2012 Rookies at the End of the Regular Season
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LaMichael James filled a much needed backup role behind Frank Gore.

Even with an onslaught of injuries, the San Francisco 49ers rookie class saw very little of the field in the 2012 regular season.

Regrading said class will certainly prove trying with such limited statistical data.

Only three of the seven total draft picks logged any offensive or defensive snaps. Among those three, just one registered any meaningful action.

The corps of undrafted rookies was as infrequently used as their drafted brethren. A lone member of this group appeared on an official box score for San Francisco.

All told, nine first-year 49ers accumulated 220 total plays. Fourteen more came via returns on special teams.  

“Incompletes” will likely dominate the grading because San Francisco already had a relatively complete roster. All 11 starters on defense returned from 2011. An overwhelming majority of the offense came back as well.

General manager Trent Baalke drafted for the depth and for the future. Selecting players for immediate assimilation into NFL life on Sundays wasn’t necessarily part of the plan.

Chalk it up as boring, conservative and unimaginative if you’d like. But it really was a prudent approach by a team with so few holes to fill.

(And one that would be devastated by injuries as it turns out).

On that note, let’s dole out grades for the 2012 rookies as the 49ers are busy preparing for their first game of the postseason.

 

Note: All play totals were derived from Pro Football Focus unless otherwise noted.

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