SANTA CLARA -- Playing on short week and on an ailing left foot, running back Carlos Hyde played only 20 of the 49ers' 46 offensive snaps. That's his lowest number of snaps on the season. Reggie Bush played 17 offensive snaps and four more on special teams. They were the only two 49ers with a rushing attempt. Colin Kaepernick did not have a carry for the first time in his NFL career.
Bush’s presence certainly affected Hyde’s snap count. But the sparse total mainly was related to the fact that the 49ers converted only one third down, punted nine times and ran just 46 plays, a season low. (They had 50 offensive snaps each against the Cardinals and Packers)
At right guard, Jordan Devey started his seventh straight game and, as was the case in Week 5 against the Giants, evenly split the snaps at that position with Andrew Tiller, 23 apiece. Despite his hamstring injury, receiver Anquan Boldin played 40 of 46 snaps. Erik Pears (back) played every snap at right tackle as backup Trent Brown was one of two active 49ers who did not play in the game. Quarterback Blaine Gabbert was the other.
Fullback Bruce Miller played 10 snaps. The Bruce Miller Effect states that for the 49ers to be competitive, Miller must play around 40 percent of the team’s snaps. He played 22 percent and the 49ers were not competitive.
Meanwhile, there were hints before the game that linebacker NaVorro Bowman might not be able to get his still-recovering left knee in playing shape for a Thursday start and could be limited. He took some snaps off Thursday, but not many. The team's starting inside linebacker played 62 of 72 defensive snaps. Bowman finished second to fellow inside linebacker Michael Wilhoite in total tackles, 13 to 10.
Wilhoite played 63 snaps while newcomer Gerald Hodges, active for the 49ers for the first time this season, played 15 snaps and came away with one tackle.
Also on defense, Tank Carradine, who has been unhappy with his playing time, was on the field for 30 snaps, his second highest mark of the season. He finished with four tackles and a hit on Russell Wilson, who was sacked five times, two each by Ahmad Brooks and Aaron Lynch, each of whom played 64 snaps. Carradine's snaps seemed to come at the expense of Tony Jerod Eddie, who played just two defensive snaps.
At safety, Antoine Bethea played 30 snaps before leaving the game with a shoulder injury. His replacement, Jaquiski Tartt, played 48 snaps before leaving with a leg bruise. Tartt said afterward that his leg went numb on the play and that he feared the worse. The feeling soon returned, however, and he would be ok. Bethea was not around to speak with reporters.