This post was written by Matt Hamm
The 49er running game was the worst of the worst for the team on Sunday. Frank Gore couldn’t seem to get anywhere on the majority of his runs and was stopped for negative yardage far too often. Gore finished with 22 carries for just 59 yards for a 2.7 yard avg. far below Gore’s career avg. The offensive line which seemed to do well run blocking but struggled in pass protection in the pre season did just the opposite week 1. The line did a great job of keeping the heat off QB Alex Smith all game long vs. Seattle not allowing a single sack all game. Gore’s long carry of 16 yards was one of only a few times he was given any type of running lane. Don’t expect the coaching staff to hop off the wagon and start abandoning the running game anytime soon however.
The strength of this offensive line the last couple years has been run blocking. With 4 of 5 starters returning this year that will be the same this season. Expect the 49ers OL to make the quickest improvement on the offensive side of the ball since they have been together the longest. Center Jonathan Goodwin was promoted to the starting lineup a little over 2 weeks ago. Give him and the rest of the OL a few weeks to gel before declaring the run game a weakness just yet. This team will rely a lot on the running game this season, simply, Frank Gore is too good not to. I expect a big year for Frank and the running game and nothing that happened week 1 has changed that.
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