San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde will miss Sunday's NFC West game against the St. Louis Rams. The team announced the news on Friday, not long after head coach Jim Tomsula suggested Hyde would be a game-time decision and honestly, I'm more than a little relieved.
Hyde is a young, talented running back and he plays a position which I feel requires less time to learn and understand than most in the league. I also think Hyde is already at a point in his career where missing a week won't wind up being a huge issue for him and his development.
And all of this relief hinges on my own confidence in his ability to be a feature running back in the NFL. Personally, I have seen enough of Hyde as a running back to be confident he is the bell-cow back that the 49ers are after and he can lead a productive rushing attack for a run-oriented team. I like his vision, I like his strength, I like his technique and I really like the head on his shoulders.
That's why it was so worrying to see him play against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 7. He played a very tough defensive team on a short week despite the fact that the foot injury which we now know will keep him out of Week 8 against the Rams was a concern in the previous game. He played a game for a losing team with a quarterback that other teams were not at all worried about.
They went after Hyde and they went after him hard, and I'm just relieved whoever is in charge made the decision to sit Hyde for Sunday's game.
Truthfully, I would be surprised if we see Hyde again before the bye week. The 49ers will play the Atlanta Falcons at Levi's Stadium after playing the Rams, and then they have a bye week before traveling to Seattle to take on the Seahawks again. The 49ers have no reason to play him against the Falcons and risk a more serious injury. I know these kinds of things can become a nagging problem for a long time and Hyde really needs the time to heal.
No, Hyde isn't a signed and sealed guaranteed NFL-leading rusher and yes, he will need to see some more action this season before we wrap up the position as a non-issue heading into the offseason. But for now, I imagine I'm not the only one who saw the injury news on Friday and uttered a silent "well that's good news," or something along those lines.
Now let's see if we can see something positive out of Mike Davis and or Jarryd Hayne.