Originally posted by LifelongNiner:
Ted Ginn has some actual returns for TDs, but you aren't getting much more out of him in terms of averages as a returner. Secondly, Ted Ginn would have NEVER been used in this offense as a receiver the way Carolina did. He wasn't used when he was here and we don't use the receivers that we have now behind Boldin and Crabtree. Lamichael James's perceived lack of value falls on this coaching staff. He proved last season he is a capable #2 running back, but we barely got him the ball as a runner this season, particularly when his speed could have been used. The reality is we have an all star staff on the defensive side of the ball but the offensive side is lacking. Some of it could be personnel (our center is not very good), but a lot of it boils down to play calling and how we use guys. I'd just like for the 49ers to make a point to let James touch the ball 5 times a game (whether they be runs or passes) and you will see him work a little magic.
With that said, I still would like to draft a receiver who can return kicks solely because if James were to get hurt, we should have other options or perhaps the rookie beats out James. Regardless, it is terrible that he has received so few opportunities when he has already demonstrated he can handle the load.
Couldn't agree more re: Ginn...as I said previously, right or wrong this coaching staff was not going to utilize him to much (if any) extent on offense. So then it's a matter of why pay him upwards of $1M to be a so-so return man when LMJ can do just the same for a lot less. Granted, at the outset it was Williams, but in the end don't see anything Ginn did in the return game that would support the argument he would've been any better than what the 49ers ended up with in LMJ.
Also agree re: James on offense...I thought all season LMJ was a guy that should be touching the ball at least 5x/game...does that necessarily mean he's the #2 RB? Of course not. But it's recognizing he has playmaking ability, which he HAS demonstrated, and getting him the ball in situations where he has best chance for success.
If for whatever reason Lattimore doesn't pan out, as stubborn as HaRo appear to be, I just don't see how they could possibly go into 2014 thinking they can still predicate the offense on a 30+ yr old Frank Gore slamming it up the gut...doesn't mean you have to go 5-wide and throw 50x/game, but you can be a bit more "dynamic" and give a few shots to your lesser-used weapons. A great example was the reverses they did with Patton 2-3 times. That was GOOD. But in true HaRo fashion, we never saw it again.