It’s no secret that the running back position is going into extinction. With teams adopting the pass-first philosophy, players like Frank Gore are going to be relied on less and less as the years go by. To me it makes zero sense, because football is won in the trenches. Some think Gore may be coming up on the end of his career due to his age, but that may not be the case.
History is not on Gore’s side as he is 31 years of age entering his 10th season. Gore is the all-time leading rusher in San Francisco 49ers history, and he will have a the next few seasons to improve his Hall-of-Fame chances.
Father time isn’t on Gore’s side, but he looks to defeat it. Many running backs haven’t accomplished that feat, but Gore has a fighting chance. In Gore’s career he has only had one season (2006) where he had over 300 carries. Gore’s workload has been less than other feature backs in the past, so that improves his chances. Gore’s workload was also less in college as he suffered injuries that caused him to miss carrying a heavy workload.
The injuries to Gore at The U come as a blessing in disguise. Many running backs at Gore’s age are already broken down due to the combination of a heavy workload in college and in the NFL. If anyone defies the odds of father time I am banking on Gore.
The 49ers drafted Carlos Hyde, and other backs such as Marcus Lattimore, Kendall Hunter and LaMichael James will look to contribute; but they may have to wait their turn, because Gore isn’t going anywhere. It is refreshing to see a throwback player like Gore, and I hope he beats the odds of proving that he can play at a high level after the age of 30.
Gore’s days as a member of 49ers could be numbered as his contract ends at the end of the season. The business side of the NFL is rough, but it is the harsh reality of knowing that this may be Gore’s last ride as a 49er. If Gore defeats father time it will make it hard for GM Trent Baalke to allow Gore to walk away.
No matter what happens next offseason, be sure to focus on Gore’s bout with father time this season. I am sure it’ll be a good matchup to watch.