Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Beat writer wonders if offseason additions could tempt 49ers to trade Raheem Mostert

Jul 19, 2021 at 9:22 AM--

The San Francisco 49ers should feel good about their running back depth. On their latest 49ers Talk podcast, Matt Maiocco and Laura Britt of NBC Sports Bay Area took a look at the team's offseason veteran additions and departures. When they landed at the running back group, Maiocco wondered if there is too much depth.

Obviously, there is the argument that there is no such thing as too much depth. For example, the 49ers have to feel better about their quarterback position with high-potential rookie Trey Lance likely to open the season as Jimmy Garoppolo's backup. That's a better backup situation than the team had in recent years.

At running back, San Francisco didn't just add veteran Wayne Gallman, who may be a severely underrated signing. Gallman rushed for 682 yards and six touchdowns through 15 games and 10 starts last year, filling in for the injured Saquon Barkley. He is a solid offseason addition.

The 49ers also bolstered the position in the draft, selecting not one but two running backs — Trey Sermon in the third round and Elijah Mitchell in the sixth.

While Raheem Mostert is predicted to receive most of the snaps this season, assuming he remains healthy, Maiocco wonders if the multiple offseason additions could lead to a move.

"Here's one thing to keep in mind," Maiocco told Britt. "I mean, you, me, everybody likes Raheem Mostert a lot, but the 49ers have a very good stockpile of running backs. And I just wonder, if Trey Sermon is looking good, and Elijah Mitchell is looking good, and Wayne Gallman is looking good, and we're getting good reports back on Jeff Wilson Jr.'s rehab, if JaMycal Hasty is looking good, I just wonder if they might dangle Raheem Mostert for possible trade."

Mostert led the 49ers in rushing in 2019, accumulating 772 yards and eight touchdowns on 137 carries and adding 14 receptions for 180 yards and two more scores. He took over the NFC Championship Game that season, rushing for 220 yards and four touchdowns. Mostert was limited to 521 yards, two rushing touchdowns, and a receiving touchdown last season after missing eight games due to injuries.

The running back position could be one of the more interesting training camp battles to keep an eye on. There will be some tough decisions, assuming the team doesn't trade away one of its players.

"When you think about it, teams don't want to cut good players, right?" Maiocco continued. "If everything kind of works out the way the 49ers envision, they're going to have to cut a really good running back. Would they do that? I don't know. I mean, Raheem Mostert could easily be the team's best running back. He could be a 1,200-yard rusher. But with Trey Sermon and the other backs I mentioned, it gives them some flexibility."

You can listen to the entire conversation below. The portion about the running backs begins at about the 13-minute mark.

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