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Shanaplan: Should Raheem Mostert be RB1 next year?

Or is Jeff Wilson the more reliable option?

Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

For all intents and purposes, the offseason has already begun for the 49ers. The team decided today to keep Robbie Gould around for two more years, and they face a ton of big decisions in the months to come. In today’s Shanaplan podcast, Kyle Posey and Akash Anavarathan decided to take a look at some of what Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch face in 2021 - starting with what to do at running back.

About a year ago at this time, Raheem Mostert was carrying the 49ers to the Super Bowl with his 220 yard, four touchdown game against the Packers in the NFC Championship. It would have been absolutely crazy at that point to suggest that anyone else be the starting running back for the team in the immediate future.

Fast forward 12 months and Mostert, while still productive, has missed half of the 16 games the 49ers have played since his record-setting performance in January. Jeff Wilson, meanwhile, has been pretty much just as productive as Mostert this year while playing in his absence.

That begs the question, would the 49ers be better off giving the bulk of the carries to Wilson next year and lightening the load on Raheem Mostert?

“I just think it comes down to the health of these guys,” Akash said in today’s Shanaplan podcast, “Especially with Raheem Mostert. I struggle to see him as a top ten, top five running back because he just struggles to stay on the field...It’s not his fault he gets hurt, it is what it is, it’s the situation, but there’s a reason Kyle Shanahan just doesn’t feed him consistently.”

(Listen to the full conversation in today’s Shanaplan Podcast by clicking on the player below)

There’s no question that Mostert is one of the most explosive running backs in the league, and he’s perfect for Kyle Shanahan’s system, but would both he and the team be better off if he didn’t bear so much of the load?

Other topics covered in today’s episode (taped before the Gould news came down):

-Is Kyle Juszczyk worth keeping around?

-George Kittle vs. Travis Kelce: Which record-breaking season was more impressive?

-Which players will Robert Saleh take with him if he gets a head coaching job?