What we learned from 49ers dominant win over Falcons

Jeff Wilson Jr. #22 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Jeff Wilson Jr. #22 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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Jeff Wilson, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers running back Jeff Wilson (22) Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports /

Takeaway No. 5: Jeff Wilson is extremely undervalued

Yes, the 49ers will be very happy when rookie running back Elijah Mitchell returns from his concussion and other injuries, reassuming his starting job after missing the last two weeks.

But no one seemed to tell veteran running back Jeff Wilson Jr. he’s nothing more than a reserve option who can spell a starter like Mitchell when called upon.

After missing the first half of the year because of an offseason meniscus tear, Wilson has now found himself starting in back-to-back games and made his presence felt in a big way against Atlanta, rushing 21 times for 110 yards and a touchdown while averaging 5.2 yards per attempt.

This isn’t unlike the kind of role Wilson held a year ago when he was frequently called upon to spell other injured Niners tailbacks, and in two of his three starts in 2020, Wilson was able to crest the 100-yard rushing plateau and was a big reason why San Francisco won some key games despite all the injury-related frustrations from that season.

Wilson won’t get the appreciation from the national media, and he’ll likely lose his starting role once Mitchell returns.

Nevertheless, Wilson was as big a reason as any behind why the 49ers pulled off such an impressive win in Week 15.

Next. 5 dark-horse Niners who could slip into 2022 Pro Bowl. dark