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Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports


PFF ranks 49ers running backs No. 19 in the NFL

Jul 29, 2020 at 6:05 AM--


Pro Football Focus continues its position-by-position rankings and has turned its attention to the running backs. Where did the San Francisco 49ers' No. 2 ranked rushing attack from last season place on the list?

Analyst Steve Palazzolo has the unit ranked No. 19 in the NFL.

Three different running backs gained over 500 rushing yards last season. Raheem Mostert led the group with 772 yards. Tevin Coleman gained 544 while Matt Breida, who was traded to the Miami Dolphins during the draft, amassed 623 rushing yards.

"After making his name on special teams for four years, Mostert broke out to post the fourth-best rushing grade in the league last year (83.3) while averaging 5.8 yards per carry and forcing 46 missed tackles on 190 rushes," wrote Palazzolo. "Mostert has angle-changing speed, and that's even more valuable when the system puts the running back into space as often as it does."

A contract disagreement forced Mostert to request a trade this offseason. The running back and the 49ers found common ground this week as the team signed Mostert to a reworked incentive-laden deal, which included bonuses.

Coleman came over from the Atlanta Falcons, where he had experience in two seasons within Kyle Shanahan's system. He is entering the final year of his two-year deal.

"Tevin Coleman has impressive speed of his own," wrote Palazzolo. "and while he wasn't as successful as Mostert, he posted the highest rushing grade of his career (71.3) in his first season in San Francisco last year."

Behind Mostert and Coleman are Jerick McKinnon and Jeff Wilson Jr.

McKinnon hasn't played in an NFL game since 2017 and has yet to take a regular-season snap with San Francisco since signing in 2018. He restructured his four-year deal this offseason, taking a pay cut and shortening the contract by a year to remain with the team and prove he can be the rushing and receiving threat that Shanahan envisioned before an ACL injury sidelined him.

Then there is fullback Kyle Juszczyk, who the ranking also factored.

"The highest-graded fullback in three of the last four years, Juszczyk has averaged over 10.0 yards per reception over the last two years, as the 49ers do a great job of getting him into space and reminding defenses that they must defend the entire field," wrote Palazzolo.





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