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Golden Nuggets: Mostert’s absence highlighted the 49ers’ issues in the running game

Your daily San Francisco 49ers links for Thursday, November 19, 2020

Los Angeles Rams v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The good news Tuesday was that the 49ers claimed Takk McKinley. The bad news was Javon Kinlaw was placed on the Reserve/COVID list. Thankfully, Kinlaw shouldn’t miss any time because San Francisco is on a bye.

5 high-priced players SF 49ers might move on from

No. 5: SF 49ers Cornerback Richard Sherman

Average Salary per Year: $9,050,000

Turning 33 years old next season, Sherman figures to be a player the Niners won’t prioritize re-signing.

Limited to just one game in 2020 due to a calf injury, Sherman has dealt with injuries ever since inking his three-year free-agent deal with San Francisco back in 2018. Essentially, 2019 was the only fully healthy year he’s had with the team, and he’s appeared in just 30 games out of a possible 42 over that three-year stretch.

Despite Sherman’s elongated absence this year, the SF 49ers have still boasted the league’s No. 4-ranked pass defense this season, which is pretty incredible considering the wholesale lack of a pass rush.

This, thanks to fellow corners like Jason Verrett and Emmanuel Moseley holding their own.

49ers news: Rapoport weighs in on John Lynch’s comments about Jimmy Garoppolo

“I didn’t find it to be a vigorous defense. A vigorous defense is, ‘He’s my quarterback. Stop asking.’ But in reality, everybody likes Jimmy. I don’t think that’s a question.

I think it’s more of the 49ers don’t know with certainty right now what the answer is. They don’t know where they’re going to draft. They don’t know who’s going to be available in free agency. I mean, I think they have some ideas, but they don’t know for sure. You can’t possibly say, yes, Jimmy Garoppolo is going to be my best option at quarterback right now. You can’t say that.

“And there’s no crime in saying, ‘Jimmy Garoppolo is our quarterback unless we get a better option,’” Rapoport continued. “That’s most of what life is about. Like, all of us are employed and make the salaries we make until they can find someone better and cheaper. And then we won’t, right? Isn’t that what life is about?”

Wednesday Round-Up: DJ Reed Discusses Switching Sides ...

On the Seahawks-49ers rivalry when he played for San Francisco:

“It was definitely a rivalry. Every time they played the Seahawks, they used to always say it’s an ice bag game, which means it’s going to be very physical, probably one of the most physical games that I was a part of. That definitely was a rivalry when I was there.”

On what it’s been like playing for the Seahawks:

“I love the atmosphere here, honestly. It’s a great atmosphere – very positive and optimistic. I have a great quarterback, in my opinion the best quarterback in the NFL, so he makes it easier for everybody. And Pete is a great coach, man, he’s very energetic, he’s always on the go, he’s very alert, very in-tune with all sides of the ball. I love it here. My teammates, everybody’s cool, it’s a great locker room. I love it.”

Biggest winners, losers from SF 49ers Week 10 loss to Saints

RB Raheem Mostert

Don’t worry, I know running back Raheem Mostert didn’t play Sunday, but that’s my point: He is clearly the SF 49ers’ top running back as they continue to suffer in the run game without him.

The team has had a lot of trouble moving the ball in his absence, and it was once again evident Sunday when reserve tailback Jerick McKinnon rushed 18 times for a mere 33 yards (1.8 yards per carry). McKinnon is clearly not a lead back in the NFL and serves much better as a change-of-pace option, making Mostert’s absence so much more glaring than some probably predicted.