4 Week 8 stats that suggest 49ers are turning 2021 around

Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images)
Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /
3 of 4
Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers running back Eli Mitchell (25) Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 2: 49ers get impressive rush totals from Elijah Mitchell

There’s no doubting rookie running back Elijah Mitchell is the Niners’ top option on the ground right now.

And while Mitchell has had some impressive efforts in San Francisco losses this season, it’s a good trend to see Kyle Shanahan relying on the sixth-round pick to engineer the proverbial “bread and butter” of his offense, the rushing attack.

The 49ers called 26 of their 54 total offensive plays on the ground, and Mitchell had 18 of those carries. While many of the rushes came late in the game when the Niners were chewing up clock with the lead, it’s good to see a more balanced approach between the run and the pass.

It also helps Mitchell made the most of his efforts, too.

Mitchell rushed for 137 yards and a touchdown in the game, averaging an impressive 7.6 yards per attempt against a Bears defense that, entering Week 8, was allowing only 4.4 yards per carry.

Shanahan’s offense has been predicated on an effective ground game for so long. So it shouldn’t be too surprising San Francisco’s offense has scuffled a lot, either when the rushing attack isn’t working or when Shanahan is getting away from it altogether.

Fortunately in Week 8, Shanahan didn’t. Mitchell capitalized. The 49ers won.

It’s that simple.