Opinion: All Blacks v France player ratings - Few standouts in humbling Paris defeat

OPINION: The All Blacks 2021 campaign has ended on a sour note, with back-to-back defeats at Dublin last week and then Paris on Sunday morning.

The 40-25 scoreline was as convincing as the French performance, with New Zealand struggling for cohesion on attack for the second-straight weekend.

They produced 20 minutes of encouragement, when the comeback seemed possible, but a 62nd-minute yellow card to Ardie Savea put paid to those hopes.

Only a few men in black stood out in another disappointing 80 minutes.

Here's how the All Blacks rated: 

New-Zealand's players gather after number eight Ardie Savea scored a try during the Autumn Nations Series rugby union match between France and New Zealand at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, near Paris, on November 20, 2021. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP) (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)
Photo credit: Getty Images

Joe Moody 5

Great work defensively from Moody, with some crunching tackles, but in the modern game, he just doesn't get involved enough with ball in hand. Zero carries.

Dane Coles 6

Started the test well with a couple of telling runs, earned a turnover and made four from four with his tackle attempts.

Nepo Laulala 5 

Conceded an early penalty and seemed to struggle with the pace of the test match. Four carries for seven meters and didn't miss a tackle, and the All Blacks scrum crumbled a bit when he left the field.

Brodie Retallick 5 

Hasn't had the greatest of years on his return to international rugby. Just seems a bit off his game. As always, he provided rock-solid defence, missing just one tackle on 10 attempts.

Sam Whitelock 5 

Not his best test. Made a couple of great captaincy decisions that led to tries, but couldn't get into the game on either side of the ball.

Akira Ioane 4

Very little influence and his season has stagnated since the second test against the Springboks. Made a couple of nice runs and completed all five of his tackle attempts.

Sam Cane 5 

Tried hard to make a difference defensively and secured a couple of turnovers, but was quiet with ball in hand.

Ardie Savea 7

Was the best All Black on show in the first half and continued through the second, until the yellow card stifled momentum.

Aaron Smith 5

Just looked short of a gallop and you'd have to question why an in-form Brad Weber wasn't given the start. 

Richie Mo'unga 3

Has any player regressed under Ian Foster more than Mo'unga? There is a hint of Carlos Spencer in Mo'unga - superb going forward, but offers very little to a team going backwards.

Missed a key tackle on Ntamack in the French in-goal that proved a massive momentum shift.

George Bridge 5

Another player who has regressed in 2021. Confidence took a hammering after the Springboks debacle, but he was solid enough this morning, when targeted by the French playmakers.

Quinn Tupaea 5

Looked dangerous with ball in hand, but was a deer in headlights at times on defence and missed a tackle on one of the French tries.

Rieko Ioane 8 

Was the All Blacks' best player. Looked dangerous every time he touched the ball, making a game-high 53 metres.

Slowly making the 13 jersey his own.

Will Jordan 5

Quiet test. Had a couple of nice moments, couldn't get involved in the game, but has been a standout in 2021.

Jordie Barrett  5

Caught well and defended well, but had a few wonky kicks from general play. A lot went wrong in front of him that Barrett had no control over.

New-Zealand's players react after losing the Autumn Nations Series rugby union match between France and New Zealand at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, near Paris, on November 20, 2021. (Photo by Anne-Christine POUJOULAT / AFP) (Photo by ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP via Getty Images)
Photo credit: Getty Images
PARIS, FRANCE - NOVEMBER 20: Dane Coles of New Zealand cuts a dejected figure following the Autumn Nations Series match between France and New Zealand on November 20, 2021 in Paris, France. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
Photo credit: Getty Images


Samisoni Taukei'aho 8

Superb off the bench and a key in the All Blacks fighting their way back into the test.

George Bower 4

Missed two tackles on four attempts and the scrum struggled when he came on. Not a great performance to end a really encouraging debut season.

Ofa Tuungafasi 4

Couldn't make any impact. Missed a tackle late.

Tupou Vaa'i 5

Came on late for Whitelock.

Shannon Frizell 5

Another late entry, but the game was already gone.

Brad Weber 5

Probably should have started, but ends the season as potentially the first choice back-up halfback.

Damian McKenzie N/A 

Came on in the last few minutes.

David Havili 4

Not convinced Havili is quite at the international level. Has had a poor month, after a really encouraging start to the campaign.

Ian Foster
Ian Foster Photo credit: Getty Images

Coach Ian Foster and staff 0

One question - what is the gameplan? The All Blacks look directionless under Foster.

How is this team trying to play? Their style seems based on the individual brilliance of very good players, but that doesn't cut it at the highest level, against well-drilled, well-coached sides.

The Springboks, Ireland and France have all shown the blueprint on how to beat the All Blacks - a blueprint written by Eddie Jones at the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Time for a change. Scott Robertson anyone?

Brad Lewis is a Newshub online producer