SF 49ers: 5 free agents who won’t be back in 2021
By Peter Panacy
No. 3: SF 49ers Running Back Tevin Coleman
Staying on the topic of running backs, it seems a foregone conclusion Kyle Shanahan will want to move on from one of his favorite players back with the Atlanta Falcons in 2016, Tevin Coleman.
Coleman appeared to be a spark when signed to a two-year free-agent deal in 2019. And to some extent he was, flashing a four-touchdown performance against the Carolina Panthers last year and then carrying the bulk of the workload on the ground against the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC divisional playoff game last season.
Shanahan liked Coleman to test out opponents’ defenses early in games, which is a fine role even if it doesn’t always result in big-time stats.
This year before suffering a knee injury, however, Coleman’s average yards per carry dropped all the way to a mere 2.4.
It’s hard to justify keeping the 27-year-old Coleman around after an injury-plagued and lackluster 2020 campaign. And while the SF 49ers don’t necessarily hesitate dishing out big-dollar contracts to running backs, contrary to popular belief (Coleman and Jerick McKinnon are two examples), it seems much more likely the 2021 Niners will rely more on the combination of Raheem Mostert, Jeff Wilson Jr. and JaMycal Hasty instead.
Perhaps another late-round/undrafted find, too.