Each week, Pro Football Focus puts together 32 observations from the week that was, providing little snippets of information that don't fit into anything else. This week, their observation about the San Francisco 49ers revolved around rookie running back Carlos Hyde. According to PFF, on Carlos Hyde's 48 carries, he has 5 or more yards after contact on 10 of them. They said that 20.8 percent rate ranks as best in the league. The second-best rate of 20.4 percent belongs to Colin Kaepernick.
PFF does not publicly publish all of the information they gather, and it would appear this 5+ yards after contact stat is among those not published. However, they do include some other stats worth noting. For example, they have an elusive rating, which measures a runner's success beyond the point of being helped by his blockers. Carlos Hyde ranks 10th in this category, while Frank Gore ranks 35th. He also ranks 19th among 46 running backs in yards after contact per attempt. Gore ranks 38th in that category.
On the season thus far, Hyde has rushed 48 times for 161 yards and two touchdowns. That is just under half of Frank Gore's 102 carries. The 49ers are clearly trying to establish Hyde as a strong second option. His numbers are not spectacular, but he has been able to give Gore a rest and not completely decimate the offense in the process. That yards after contact stat tells us a little bit about what we already know about Hyde. He is a power runner who can run guys over as needed. Given the 49ers offensive line struggles, that is a helpful trait to have.
As the 49ers head into the second half of the season, they will hopefully have more of their offensive line healthy. If they can get Mike Iupati back from his concussion, and Anthony Davis can shake off the rust, there is a chance this line solidifies in the second half. A big part of that will be how Marcus Martin settles in at the center position. The 49ers running backs have had strong moments this season, but they need that offensive line to come together. A strong offensive line combined with the Gore/Hyde combo could do some big things in the second half of the season.