Kendall Hunter sure did look like he had a lot more burst Sunday vs. Cincinnati than Frank Gore did. This season Gore has gotten off to a slow start and had a miserable game Sunday. It appeared at first Gore had been benched late in the game in favor of Hunter as the team went to more of outside running game.
Gore apparently suffered yet another ankle injury and said he was unable to make some of the runs especially cuts he needed to to be effective. Gore’s status was uncertain as the news of his injury broke now it appears Gore will play Sunday vs. the Eagles. Head Coach Jim Harbaugh added “Frank is Good to Go”
Chilo Rachal’s official status for Sunday’s game is yet to be determined. The Right Guard who has often struggled since the 49ers took him in the 2nd round 3 years ago was called for 3 penalties, 2 holding and a false start. Rachal was also the culprit on at least 1 sack as well and was later replaced by Adam Snyder. Snyder who played well in training camp at Center where he was forced into action when David Baas left in free agency and the team was left with no one else. Later the team signed Pro-Bowl C Jonathan Goodwin to a 3 year contract and while it seemed obvious he would take over the starting role quickly Snyder kept the competition close into the 4th week of the preseason. The 49ers have been patient in past seasons with Rachal as he seemed to be one of former HC Mike Singletary’s favorites, maybe patience has ran out with the new coaching staff. When asked if Rachal would start Sunday HC Jim Harbaugh replied “That’s to be determined. There’s a competition there.”
For all the hype around Kendall Hunter’s play and Frank Gore’s slow start consider this. Hunter’s play statistically hasn’t been much better this season compared to Gore’s. Hunter is averaging 2.7 yards per carry to Gore’s 2.5, but Hunter looked more explosive and looks to be an exciting prospect. Before thinking that Hunter will take too many of Frank’s carries don’t forget Gore’s stellar history with the team, his new 3 year contract extension and the fact that he is coming off a season ending hip injury and he hurt his ankle Sunday. Did I mention the Offensive Line play yet?
Sound off 49er fans let us hear your thoughts in the comments section. Should the 49ers bench Chilo Rachal in favor of Adam Snyder? Should Kendall Hunter get more of Frank Gore’s carries/playing time? If so how many?