Podcast: 49ers Offseason Begins →
Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ Shanahan on Mitchell, McCaffrey: “There’s not one run that one guy can do that the other guy can’t”

Nov 16, 2022 at 10:01 AM--

Sunday night was San Francisco 49ers running back Elijah Mitchell's first game back since suffering an MCL sprain in Week 1. While he was sidelined, the 49ers pulled off a blockbuster trade, acquiring running back Christian McCaffrey from the Carolina Panthers.

Mitchell entered Sunday's matchup against the Los Angeles Chargers knowing the game plan called for him and McCaffrey to split the workload. Mitchell led the team with 89 rushing yards on 18 carries, while McCaffrey finished with 38 rushing yards and a touchdown on 14 carries, adding four catches for 39 receiving yards.

"We could be the best duo backs in the league, in my opinion," Mitchell said after the 49ers' 22-16 win.

McCaffrey received 11 of the 49ers' first 16 carries, while Mitchell had 13 of the last 16 in the game.

"I really don't mind at all, when it's a run play, who's in," head coach Kyle Shanahan said this morning on KNBR's Murph & Mac show. "Both of those guys, to me, can run the ball at a very high level, and their skill sets are pretty similar. I mean, they have a little bit different style, but there's not one run that one guy can do that the other guy can't do.

"We went into that game saying, 'In a perfect world, when this game is done, it would be awesome if they could have even carries.' We thought that would be hard because Christian's just going to be in there a little bit more, especially on third down and stuff.

"I told [assistant head coach and running backs coach] Anthony [Lynn] that if it ended up that way, close to even, that would be a hell of a job substituting, which he was trying to do. Then towards the end, we got in those long drives, and we were kind of hammering it out. He left him in there for a while, and I thought it was a good decision."

The radio hosts asked Shanahan about the NBC broadcast, which repeatedly showed McCaffrey on the sideline, leaving many to wonder why the running back the 49ers traded so much draft capital for wasn't playing. Mitchell's success helped resist the urge to play McCaffrey more, though.

First, the coach humorously noted that he does not watch television broadcasts during games.

"And I don't think about what everyone is urging during the game," Shanahan continued. "I get it. Everyone's going to have their opinion, but those are the things that—I've just done this for a while, and I'm pretty blacked out to those types of things during the game."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Shanahan below.


Facebook Comments

More San Francisco 49ers News

49ers-Eagles Injury Report: Christian McCaffrey, Elijah Mitchell miss second consecutive practice

By David Bonilla
Jan 26

The San Francisco 49ers are preparing for their NFC Championship Game contest against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Aside from tackle Trent Williams returning from his veteran day off, nothing changed compared to Wednesday's practice participation report. Two 49ers running backs sat out Wednesday's practice due to injuries. Nothing changed for Christian McCaffrey and Elijah Mitchell on Thursday. Neither participated in the afternoon session. However, McCaffrey was on hand for the team's walk-through before practice. How concerned is the 49ers head coach about his running backs' statuses? "Same concerns I had yesterday," Kyle Shanahan said. One person who isn't

Christian McCaffrey returns to practice ahead of 49ers-Eagles; Elijah Mitchell still sidelined

By David Bonilla
Jan 27

There probably wasn't much concern inside the San Francisco 49ers building surrounding running back Christian McCaffrey's availability for Sunday's NFC Championship Game matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles. When asked about the chances of not playing this weekend, McCaffrey responded, "Zero." The media has kept an eye on the situation because McCaffrey missed the first two practices this week due to a calf contusion. The running back was back on the practice field on Friday, though, indicating he will be ready to go against the Eagles. The bad news is that running back Elijah Mitchell, who also missed Wednesday's and Thursday's practices, was not on the

49ers-Eagles Injury Report: Christian McCaffrey cleared to play Sunday; Elijah Mitchell questionable

By David Bonilla
Jan 27

The San Francisco 49ers are preparing for their NFC Championship Game contest against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Christian McCaffrey returned to practice on Friday after missing Wednesday's and Thursday's sessions. The star running back recently declared there is "zero" chance he misses Sunday's game. The 49ers did not list him on their game status report, indicating he will play. "He looked full go," head coach Kyle Shanahan declared after practice. Elijah Mitchell did not practice on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday due to a groin injury. However, he got some individual work before

How the 49ers need to adjust with a limited Elijah Mitchell and Christian McCaffrey

By Rohan Chakravarthi
Jan 28

The San Francisco 49ers faced some unfortunate news this week as starting running back Christian McCaffrey was a non-participant in two of the week's three practices, although he was present on Friday and ultimately taken off the injury report ahead of Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles. Additionally, running back Elijah Mitchell missed the entire week of practice after sustaining a groin injury in last weekend's game against the Dallas Cowboys, with his status being questionable. Regardless, San Francisco has an issue at running back with the limited nature of both key players, which means they'll need an adjustment against a tough Philadelphia team on


Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone