San Francisco 49ers: Ranking Each Position in 2016 by Strength
By Peter Panacy
Best Player: Carlos Hyde
Worst Player: Mike Davis
X-Factor: Kelvin Taylor
San Francisco also has more than a few questions at running back. But since No. 1 tailback Carlos Hyde should be a major beneficiary under head coach Chip Kelly, this position isn’t as much of a concern as wide receiver or tight end.
Barring injury, Hyde will be fine. He may even be great. But who backs him up remains a critical question mark.
The job could go to either journeymen backs DuJuan Harris or Shaun Draughn. Both could make the 53-man roster, one could while the other doesn’t or neither makes the cut. We don’t know.
Fortunately, the 49ers brought in rookie running back Kelvin Taylor as a promising change-of-pace back and, if given time, a guy who could wind up being the perfect complement to Hyde in subsequent seasons.
This likely means second-year pro Mike Davis is pushed to the periphery. Davis’ rookie season was limited by a hand injury, but he only managed 1.7 yards per carry during his chances last year, so it’s safe to assume he won’t be a major factor.
Hopefully the depth won’t need to be tested as much in 2016 as it was last season. Hyde’s prowess brings this group’s ranking up high enough. Let’s see how the rest of the crop pans out.