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LMJ in the slot

When we drafted him, I assumed it was for playing slot or backfield RB split wide of Kap for Sproles' like outlet passes. It didn't happen, so I knew it would happen this yr....it didn't. Maybe he would work well in the slot, or as a sproles-like RB. But running him between tackles may have been great at Oregon. Not so in the NFL. And besides, we got 3 guys ahead of him. Coach, either use him in the slot, put him in trips with boldin/ Vernon, or split him wide of Kap. Those are the 3 places he could help us most. Obviously, Coach had other ideas for him, but now, is going to have to face the fact that he is used in one of the three areas noted above, or this was a very poor 2nd rd pick. I still like the pick just fine. Somehow JH hasn't gotten around to using him like sproles for some reason.
A black Wes Welker. Genius.
yup...tailor made for it too. Question is, does he have good hands? If not, it WAS a bad pick. But until we use him in one of the wes welker ways, how will Coach H know? Baldwin wasn't going to see action until patton broke his foot(ankle?). Put him in and he looked pretty darn good to me. Part I don't understand is Baldwin caught 40 passes in 2 yrs at KC with a crappy QB. Patton just arrived. Now he's out and Baldwin gets his shot. Just frustrating that JH doesn't find out what he has for talent on the bench. Lemonier is another example....aldon was probably responsible for that one. Point is, Coach should KNOW the abilities of all his guys....and he doesn't. That is a big part of being a HC. It isn't just making game plans and calling plays. It is knowing your team, and he doesn't get high marks there.
Originally posted by pasodoc9er:
When we drafted him, I assumed it was for playing slot or backfield RB split wide of Kap for Sproles' like outlet passes. It didn't happen, so I knew it would happen this yr....it didn't. Maybe he would work well in the slot, or as a sproles-like RB. But running him between tackles may have been great at Oregon. Not so in the NFL. And besides, we got 3 guys ahead of him. Coach, either use him in the slot, put him in trips with boldin/ Vernon, or split him wide of Kap. Those are the 3 places he could help us most. Obviously, Coach had other ideas for him, but now, is going to have to face the fact that he is used in one of the three areas noted above, or this was a very poor 2nd rd pick. I still like the pick just fine. Somehow JH hasn't gotten around to using him like sproles for some reason.

That is pretty much LaMichael James future in this offense until he becomes a better runner. If he doesn't develop as a receiver, he really serves no purpose. Gore shouldn't be going anywhere and because Gore relies more on vision that speed he can continue to be a productive back in this offense. Kendall Hunter has come back strong and we have Marcus Lattimore waiting in the wings. Many people are saying that he should be used like Sproles which I agree with. There is another running back I can see James modeling his game after- Ricky Watters when he played for the 49ers. Watters was a pretty lethal weapon as a receiver during that last Super Bowl run and I think he emerged as Steve Young's number two option behind Jerry Rice. If James puts in the work to develop like either of those two players or both, he can be a very dangerous player for us for years to come.
This guy chose the wrong running back to hang around with last season, instead of spending time with Gore I bet he was hanging around with Brandon Jacobs a lot last season... http://www.csnbayarea.com/49ers/james-deletes-tweet-referencing-frustration-role
Trade him NOW!
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Originally posted by 49ersOnMINE:
This guy chose the wrong running back to hang around with last season, instead of spending time with Gore I bet he was hanging around with Brandon Jacobs a lot last season... http://www.csnbayarea.com/49ers/james-deletes-tweet-referencing-frustration-role

Yea he is stupid for saying it but our fan base is so nuts that he tweeted something random about "people not knowing him" and someone assumed it was about football when it read as if it had nothing to do with it. But this is easily about how he is inactive on game days, I do think that spending a 2nd round pick on a player that if it all went according to play would be inactive for the whole season.

Even if he is competing with Cox and Williams for the #1 PR job we wouldn't be able to swap them out if he did beat them out because Cox is our #4 DB and Williams is our #2 or #3 WR in our jacked up WR corp.

I don't think I'm overreacting at all when I say that he needs to be traded, if there is even the slightest chance of Gore being on the roster next year with Hunter and Lattimore being worked in I just don't see James staying on this roster unless we convert him to WR.
I was not a fan of the LMJ pick from the beginning. I just don't see what he adds to our offense with Kendal Hunter playing so well. Now with Lattimore being groomed for next year, the LMJ pick seems even more stupid.

Seems like a disconnect between Baalke and Harbaugh. Baalke picked a talented kid. But if Harbaugh fails to find a productive role for him on offense, then it was a wasted pick.
The kid has talent. Maybe he isn't the best blocker, but that can be taught. Bottom line is I think as long as the coaches neglect the screen game and slot game I think they're doing a disservice to the whole team.

Both Hunter and James should be used that way and it blows my mind to watch teams consistently send the house on a blitz and the niners NEVER make them pay for it.
Originally posted by TheRatMan13:
The kid has talent. Maybe he isn't the best blocker, but that can be taught. Bottom line is I think as long as the coaches neglect the screen game and slot game I think they're doing a disservice to the whole team.

Both Hunter and James should be used that way and it blows my mind to watch teams consistently send the house on a blitz and the niners NEVER make them pay for it.

he's not very good.

he doesn't know his assignments well enough (harbaugh hinted as much to press)

he can't run between the tackles at all

he's not a good receiver...he was never used as one at oregon much and he hasn't done it here so one can assume its cuz he isn't good at it

he was a BAD PICK. a very bad pick part of a horrendous 2012 draft
He needs to play in the slot with Kyle Williams. Baldwin and Boldin should play on the outside. I am tired of seeing our little WR's getting mauled at the line. Hunter is the better RB.
Originally posted by LifelongNiner:
That is pretty much LaMichael James future in this offense until he becomes a better runner. If he doesn't develop as a receiver, he really serves no purpose. Gore shouldn't be going anywhere and because Gore relies more on vision that speed he can continue to be a productive back in this offense. Kendall Hunter has come back strong and we have Marcus Lattimore waiting in the wings. Many people are saying that he should be used like Sproles which I agree with. There is another running back I can see James modeling his game after- Ricky Watters when he played for the 49ers. Watters was a pretty lethal weapon as a receiver during that last Super Bowl run and I think he emerged as Steve Young's number two option behind Jerry Rice. If James puts in the work to develop like either of those two players or both, he can be a very dangerous player for us for years to come.
But couldn't you say that he's already viewed by the coaches as a guy who CAN'T develop as a receiver? Our WR corps need help right now and LMJ is riding pine. It looks like another swing and a miss with a high draft pick.
I have always been a big fan of LMJ. I think people forget how he played when Hunter went down, kid showed some real explosiveness. The problem is how we utilize him, we need to find ways to get him the ball in space period.
[ Edited by matt49er on Oct 2, 2013 at 8:17 AM ]
I thought James was pretty good last year. 4.6 YPC in the regular season, 5.91 YPC in the playoffs. Now granted, that was only 38 carries worth of looks we had on him, but I still thought he showed some decent abilities.

Obviously James will never be a starting back, possibly not even a backup; however, if utilized properly, I feel like he could be a solid role player. I'd like to see the coaches get a little more creative with how they use him.
[ Edited by theduke85 on Oct 2, 2013 at 8:38 AM ]
Interesting call.

Obviously, he isn't being used to his full potential as a RB or receiver. IMO, he is no where even close to Hunter as a RB. But that's not the issue - IMO.

Right now, he's insurance if Gore/Hunter go down and that insurance paid off last year - so not an entirely wasted pick.

The questions are:

Does anyone think Roman will start using him in screens or in slot any time soon? I don't. He can't be any worse than KW is as far as getting separation.

How many years left for Gore and at what level of play? If 2- 3 more years and I'd trade LMJ as soon as possible to Philly to reunite w/his old coach.

What could we get for him in a trade - realistically? If we did trade him would it be for draft picks or is there a WR available somewhere?

Finally, it also depends on how Lattimore is really progressing.