49ers snap count: How playing time shapes future of running back spot

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Matt Maiocco
·4 min read
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49ers snap count: Examining future of running back position originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

Even with the number of injuries and setbacks at running back in the past four seasons, the 49ers have done a commendable job of getting production out of the position.

Carlos Hyde, Matt Breida, Alfred Morris, Tevin Coleman, Jeff Wilson Jr. and Raheem Mostert all have had their days since the 2017 season — with a splash of Jerick McKinnon and JaMycal Hasty this season, as well.

Most of the current 49ers running backs started out the past two games healthy.

The 49ers primarily went with Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson.

But, now, Mostert is likely out for the remaining two games after aggravating a high ankle sprain on Sunday in the 49ers’ 41-33 loss to the Dallas Cowboys. And Wilson seemed to be battling some physical issues, too.

Running back is among the many positions the 49ers will have to address in the offseason.

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Coleman is nearing the end of his two-year, $8.5 million contract. McKinnon also is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent. McKinnon finally got on the field this year after missing two seasons due to knee injuries. The 49ers paid him a total of $16.7 million over the past three years.

Coleman and McKinnon were needed a little on Sunday after Mostert’s injury and Wilson was sidelined for a brief period of time, too.

McKinnon, who played a combined two snaps the previous two games, was on the field for 14 offensive snaps on Sunday. Coleman saw six snaps of offense.

It seems reasonable the 49ers will move on from both players in 2021 in an attempt to get younger, more dynamic and healthier.

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Wilson is scheduled to be a restricted free agent, and his re-signing takes on a higher priority.

Mostert has one more year on a contract which will pay him approximately $3 million next season. Hasty, who went on injured reserve with a fractured collarbone, will be back as a low-cost option to compete for the third-down role the 49ers envisioned for McKinnon.

The 49ers have some decisions at wide receiver, too.

Kendrick Bourne is scheduled for unrestricted free agency. He made more than $3 million this season. He is the team’s second-leading receiver with 43 catches for 575 yards and two touchdowns.

On Sunday, Richie James got the start over Bourne and played 54 snaps. James had four catches for 56 yards. Has James shown enough to be the team’s No. 3 wideout behind Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel?

The 49ers are out of playoff contention, so the team should focus its final two games on setting things up for a busy offseason.

Here’s how much each of the 49ers played Sunday on offense, defense and special teams against Dallas:

RELATED: 49ers grades for offense, defense in Week 15 loss to Dallas

 

Offense

Quarterback: Nick Mullens 77, C.J. Beathard 7

Running back: Kyle Juszczyk 39, Jeff Wilson 39, Raheem Mostert 25, Jerick McKinnon 14, Tevin Coleman 6

Wide receiver: Brandon Aiyuk 80, Richie James 54, Kendrick Bourne 42, River Cracraft 12

Tight end: Ross Dwelley 46, Jordan Reed 42, Daniel Helm 21

Offensive line: Mike McGlinchey 84, Daniel Brunskill 84, Laken Tomlinson 84, Justin Skule 84, Trent Williams 84

Defense

Defensive line: Arik Armstead 48, Kerry Hyder 47, Javon Kinlaw 43, Jordan Willis 27, D.J. Jones 25, Kevin Givens 18, Kentavius Street 13, Dion Jordan 12

Linebacker: Fred Warner 58, Dre Greenlaw 57, Azeez Al-Shaair 21

Defensive back: Tarvarius Moore 57, Ahkello Witherspoon 57, Richard Sherman 57, K’Waun Williams 37, Jimmie Ward 29, Marcell Harris 26, Emmanuel Moseley 5, Kai Nacua 1

Special teams

Dontae Johnson 33, Joe Walker 30, Al-Shaair 29, Moseley 29, Harris 24, Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles 22, Cracraft 21, Armstead 16, Kinlaw 15, Mitch Wishnowsky 14, Nacua 14, McKinnon 13, Coleman 13, Moore 12, Hyder 11, Willis 11, Helm 10, Taybor Pepper 9, Street 8, Greenlaw 7, Ward 7, Robbie Gould 6, Tony Bergstrom 5, Dakoda Shepley 5, T.Williams 5, Skule 5, McGlinchey 5, Tomlinson 5, Juszczyk 4, Jordan 4, Warner 3, K.Williams 3, James 2, Dwelley 2, Aiyuk 1, Givens 1

Did not play

OL Isaiah Williams

Inactive

WR Deebo Samuel (hamstring), CB Jason Verrett (illness), OL Hroniss Grasu (knee), LB Mark Nzeocha

Reserve/COVID-19

OL Colton McKivitz, RB Austin Walter, TE Charlie Woerner