Today's post is going to cover the positions of running back and full back. The 49ers have a total of 5 running backs on the roster. The team has Frank Gore locked up through 2014. Kendall Hunter is also under contract until 2014 while Anthony Dixon is under contract through 2013.
On the FB side, Moran Norris is a free agent and Bruce Miller is locked up through 2014.
The combo of Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter proved to be a potent one due to the different running styles of each player and Bruce Miller was a fantastic fullback. I really don't see the team resigning Moran Norris, not when Harbaugh has used everybody and their dog as a blocking FB. Anthony Dixon is on the bubble as a player as far as I'm concerned.
Overall I'd have to say that I'm extremely happy with the running backs that the team has and I feel like there's absolutely no need to look for upgrades through the draft, trades, or via free agency.
Stats for each player are below the jump.
Gore started off really slow, leading me to question if he'd recovered from his hip injury. He then reeled off several 100 yard games in a row, before finishing a little slow (honestly he appeared a bit dinged up to me). However he finished the season with his second highest yardage total as a 49er.
|2011||San Francisco 49ers||16||15||282||1,211||4.3||55||8||17||114||6.7||13||0||2||2|
Hunter provided a nice change of pace to the bruising style of Frank Gore. He had a grasp of pass protection, and was able to elude players left and right. I feel great in his abilities. Interestingly he finished up with a slightly lower yard per carry average than Gore--but I think that's because Gore managed to break off some longer runs than Hunter. He was much better as a receiver than Gore was.
|2011||San Francisco 49ers||16||1||112||473||4.2||44||2||16||195||12.2||44||0||--||--|
Quite honestly Dixon has been a bit of a disappointment since he was drafted. Last year he had a stellar pre-season, giving us all sorts of hope, but his performance during the regular season has left much to be desired. I have a tough time seeing him sticking around.
|2011||San Francisco 49ers||16||0||29||87||3.0||9||2||1||6||6.0||6||0||--||--|
Those of you who have been around the site for long will know of my disdain for Moran Norris. I've long felt that he's a horrible full back, unable to make blocks and lousy on both runs and catches. He's a free agent and there's no way the team asks him back.
I'd post his stats but he didn't register a single stat this season--no passes, no run attempts, nothing. He played in only 5 games this year, starting two of them.
Contrast that with Bruce Miller who played in 15 games, starting 8 of them. He didn't carry the ball much, but he was a fairly effective pass catcher when asked to do so.
|2011||San Francisco 49ers||15||8||4||8||2.0||3||0||11||83||7.5||30T||1||1||0|