SANTA CLARA -- Coach Jim Tomsula declined to make excuses Friday for the NFL’s worst offense.
On Thursday, 49ers offensive coordinator Geep Chryst pointed out some elements that have contributed to the team’s problems, including the necessity to use 19 different players to catch passes, injuries at tight end, and the limited contribution from running back Carlos Hyde, whose season was cut short due to a stress fracture in his foot.
“There’s a long list of excuses we can grab, OK?” Tomsula said on Friday. “We could make those reasons. We can validate. And I can do all of those things. And I’m not going to, and we’re not going to. We’ve had struggles on offense. We’ve seen some things improve on offense. We’ve seen individuals improve. (It’s) not consistent enough. Too much up and down.”
In addition to bringing up the bottom in the NFL in yards per game, the 49ers also rank last in the league at 14.5 points per game -- more than eight points fewer than the league average.
Chryst is clearly on the hot seat with the 49ers struggling to a 4-9 record. When asked about Chryst's job performance, Tomsula gave him only a tepid endorsement.
“I think Geep does a nice job,” Tomsula said. “I think Geep does a good job.”
Tomsula cited the job Chryst and quarterbacks coach Steve Logan have done this season in getting more production from Blaine Gabbert, who fared miserably in his three seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars before the 49ers acquired him in a 2014 trade. Statistically, the 49ers have gotten slightly better play at the quarterback position after inserting Gabbert in place of Colin Kaepernick.
But the 49ers are 2-3 since Gabbert took over, and that's not good enough, Tomsula said.
“We’ve got to continue to improve,” Tomsula said. “None of us have done a good enough job. Or the left-hand column (wins) would have a higher number than it does.”