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Suggestion: Convert James into a Harvin

Problem: If Hunter is back healthy, the Niners have a glut at RB.
Problem: The Niners are missing a playmaker on the outside after Crabtree.
Potential Solution: Transition LaMichel James into a Percy Harvin type role.

James has good hands. While slightly shorter than Harvin, he is heavier/stronger but similarly quick/shifty. While the nienrs might love to have Percy here, his mental state and contract demands make it tricky. Knowing the success the niners have had in converting players under Harbaugh (Miller, Aldon, Culliver), why not move James into the WR position half-time and see if you can create a weapon? Having him and Hunter both on the bench while Gore is in there is a waste of talent, and I can't see any way that James couldn't outperform Chad Hall, AJ Jenkins, Ted Ginn, etc at WR.

If he spend minicamp/training camp working in at slot receiver, I think he could be an extremely versatile weapon that Roman/Harbaugh could exploit. Hitches, screens, end-arounds, reverses, wildcat-style formations with Kaep, double-move routes...lots of tricky possibilities.

Thoughts?
[ Edited by DarkKnight1680 on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:52 AM ]
Interesting idea
Originally posted by DarkKnight1680:
Problem: If Hunter is back healthy, the Niners have a glut at RB.
Problem: The Niners are missing a playmaker on the outside after Crabtree.
Potential Solution: Transition LaMichel James into a Percy Harvin type role.

James has good hands. While slightly shorter than Harvin, he is heavier/stronger but similarly quick/shifty. While the nienrs might love to have Percy here, his mental state and contract demands make it tricky. Knowing the success the niners have had in converting players under Harbaugh (Miller, Aldon, Culliver), why not move James into the WR position half-time and see if you can create a weapon? Having him and Hunter both on the bench while Gore is in there is a waste of talent, and I can't see any way that James couldn't outperform Chad Hall, AJ Jenkins, Ted Ginn, etc at WR.

If he spend minicamp/training camp working in at slot receiver, I think he could be an extremely versatile weapon that Roman/Harbaugh could exploit. Hitches, screens, end-arounds, reverses, wildcat-style formations with Kaep, double-move routes...lots of tricky possibilities.

Thoughts?

Good thought. We had players like that in Williams/Manningham/Jenkins who are extremely quick off the LOS but never used them in this fashion. One thing the Vikings do it line him up in the backfield and have him sprint to a spot creating automatic mismatches on LBers. Now ask, do we even use Hunter/James in this fashion? Nope...no screens, etc. I've ALWAYS felt we could use Hunter in the same fashion as Darren Sproles.

The bigger question is, WOULD we use them in this fashion? I think we should...aside from the ST play, I feel we already have Harvin's skill set on our team; we just don't use them in that fashion.

Another example of this was highlighted in the Superbowl when Rice lined up in the backfield and SPRINTED to a spot on 3rd down, hit in stride and in space and picked up an easy 1st down on a simple one-cut move. When Gore goes out, he flares out at half speed and doesn't seem to have many, if any, designed plays targeted for him in space.
  • cciowa
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james needs to work on his punt return skills and keep working on catching the ball out of the backfield. without ginn we will need him to back up kyle as a punt returner next year, unless we get some hot shot in the draft
how good are James' hands? They'd have to be much better than most RBs...and yes I understand he returns balls...it's not the same.
[ Edited by Jakemall on Feb 14, 2013 at 11:23 AM ]
Originally posted by Jakemall:
how good are James' hands? They'd have to be much better than most RBs...and yes I understand he returns balls...it's not the same.

That's the question of course. But as a returner you know he has at least passable hands, and as a RB you know he's used to having/getting the ball. And he can't be worse than Delanie, Ted, or AJ right now. Get him in with the WR position group and on the Jugs machine and I don't think he'd have much trouble.
[ Edited by DarkKnight1680 on Feb 14, 2013 at 11:37 AM ]
  • IT21
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James is too much of a p***y
Harvin is tough as hell and one of the hardest players in the league to bring down. James is easy to bring down
[ Edited by InconvenienTTruth21 on Feb 14, 2013 at 11:38 AM ]
Originally posted by InconvenienTTruth21:
James is too much of a p***y
Harvin is tough as hell and one of the hardest players in the league to bring down

Sorry, but I'm having trouble seeing where you get that from. This is a guy with over 800 touches in 3 years of college and who I saw fight for yards after contact on every touch with the niners this year. He also returns kicks, which is the most dangerous job out there, and punts when asked. If this guy is a p***y then the rest of the team must be lining up for feminine hygiene products too.
  • IT21
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Originally posted by DarkKnight1680:
Sorry, but I'm having trouble seeing where you get that from. This is a guy with over 800 touches in 3 years of college and who I saw fight for yards after contact on every touch with the niners this year. He also returns kicks, which is the most dangerous job out there, and punts when asked. If this guy is a p***y then the rest of the team must be lining up for feminine hygiene products too.

James is quick and elusive as hell but he doesn't break tackles like harvin does, not even close. Harvin is elusive as James and can still truck linebackers. Harvin isn't normal
Check out some of these, like the punt return at 1:07. Or the cutback run at 3:42 Doesn't seem like a p***y to me.

[ Edited by DarkKnight1680 on Feb 14, 2013 at 11:46 AM ]
Originally posted by InconvenienTTruth21:
James is too much of a p***y
Harvin is tough as hell and one of the hardest players in the league to bring down. James is easy to bring down

Lol sounds like you didn't watch him in college or at all this year.
  • IT21
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Originally posted by OregonDuckNiner:
Lol sounds like you didn't watch him in college or at all this year.

Or you have never watched Harvin.
Originally posted by InconvenienTTruth21:
James is too much of a p***y
Harvin is tough as hell and one of the hardest players in the league to bring down. James is easy to bring down

You might have missed several tough runs by LMJ this year. He was running through tackles and falling forward on any run where he got some momentum going. Harvin just gets the ball in space more frequently because he is not a true RB.
Originally posted by OregonDuckNiner:
Originally posted by InconvenienTTruth21:
James is too much of a p***y
Harvin is tough as hell and one of the hardest players in the league to bring down. James is easy to bring down

Lol sounds like you didn't watch him in college or at all this year.

Yeah, really. Harbaugh said a few times that James was a very tough player. A p***y?! Come on.
  • IT21
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Harvin is the only player I've seen run as hard as he does for his size. Im not saying LaMichael James isn't a good runner, but some things that Harvin does is crazy.