49ers vs. Colts: Elijah Mitchell must get more involved in second half
By Peter Panacy
The 49ers needed success with the run game against the Colts amid the rain at Levi’s Stadium, and it’s safe to say Elijah Mitchell is delivering.
With heavy rains and winds hitting Levi’s Stadium for Sunday Night Football‘s bout between the San Francisco 49ers and the Indianapolis Colts, one had to figure both teams would want to feature the run early and often throughout the game.
The Niners had to worry about the Colts’ Jonathan Taylor. But after Taylor fumbled on Indy’s opening possession, it opened up a door for San Francisco to feature its own up-and-coming running back, rookie Elijah Mitchell, who is already up over the 100-yard mark.
Head coach Kyle Shanahan made it a point to get Mitchell involved early on the 49ers’ opening drive, and the sixth-round NFL Draft pick out of Louisiana-Lafayette rushed for 57 yards and capped off the initial Niners possession with a 14-yard touchdown to get Shanahan’s squad out to a quick 6-0 lead:
Michell also had a 20-yard run on that same drive.
49ers must involve Elijah Mitchell more in second half vs. Colts
San Francisco regularly took advantage of an over-aggressive Indianapolis linebacker corps, frequently using misdirection and getting the speedy Mitchell into open space, and he took full advantage of those holes with some chunk gains.
Mitchell was able to get close to the 100-yard mark rushing by halftime, finishing the first two quarters with 93 rush yards, and he’s also averaging 6.6 per attempt.
Although the Niners worked away from Mitchell towards the end of the first half for reasons unknown.
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The 49ers figure to continue riding Mitchell’s speed and hot hand, although mixing in fellow running backs Trey Sermon and JaMycal Hasty could also be in Shanahan’s play list, especially later in the game if the Niners are able to preserve their early lead on Sunday night.
Or if the weather gets worse, which it’s expected to be.
San Francisco trails 13-12 entering the third quarter.