49ers roster: 5 players most likely to have a breakout season in 2021

Brandon Aiyuk #11 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Brandon Aiyuk #11 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /
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Trey Sermon, San Francisco 49ers
Trey Sermon , San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

49ers Breakout Candidate No. 2: Running Back Trey Sermon

Raheem Mostert is probably going to be the 49ers’ de facto RB1 on the depth chart heading into 2021, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll start on a regular basis. If anything, Kyle Shanahan doesn’t care so much about which running backs start, rather who winds up being the primary ball-carrier over the course of games.

Mostert’s injury history, along with fellow rusher Jeff Wilson Jr. being sidelined with a meniscus tear, opens up the door for the Niners’ third-round rookie, Trey Sermon, to assume a major role on offense.

Shanahan may still stash Mostert for the second half of games, using him as a home-run threat when opposing defenses are worn down and tired.

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Yet that would probably point to Sermon being the primary option early in games. And by nearly every account during OTAs, Sermon was making massive strides towards assuming a key role in San Francisco’s offense right out of the gate.

While Sermon doesn’t have Mostert’s speed, the rookie does have all the elements of a true bell-cow running back, and it’s highly likely the 49ers make the most of their attempts to feature him early in his career.

Potentially towards a breakout campaign right away from the first-year pro.