One 49ers player who created some divided opinions this past season was running back Anthony Dixon. He finished the year with 237 yards, averaging 3.4 yards per carry, and two touchdowns. Dixon received a lot of praise for his enthusiasm but his running style drew mixed reactions. There were times he looked incredibly impressive, and there were other times he would dance incessantly in the backfield and end up losing yards or getting very few.
I'm curious about what the state of the site's opinion is in regards to Dixon. I bring this up because of something I read last night over at 49ers.com. Site writer Taylor Price is down in Mobile for the Senior Bowl and had this to say:
I ran into Rams running backs coach Sylvester Croom, who coached 49ers second-year RB Anthony Dixon in college. Croom said he wished he could have selected Dixon in St. Louis and that the 49ers have a great runner for the future.
It's only one opinion but it's certainly a positive one. However, I've also heard similar opinions from friends who are big college football fans but are not 49ers fans. I know my friends aren't going to have the credentials for you to take their word as their bond, but these are people I trust when it comes to football. One is an Oregon fan out here in California, and another is a Kentucky fan living in Georgia. Both think Dixon is going to be quite solid at the NFL level.
For the folks concerned about his dancing skills (or dancing problem as it were), do you think this problem is something he'll correct, or even be able to correct? We know the supporters are down with Dixon, but I'm more curious what the less enthusiastic folks think. I've seen enough to at least be excited, but part of that might be that his own level of excitement is contagious.
It basically comes down to this: can Anthony Dixon be a primary backup to Gore and maintain his own effectiveness while spelling Gore sufficiently over the course of 16 or 18 games and potentially the playoffs? I couldn't really think of a proper poll question, so consider it more just a matter for discussion.