In one of my earlier articles I said that the San Francisco 49ers did very well in 2014 draft by not only addressing their needs but by also getting great value for their picks. The 49ers’ front office did a great job of getting very talented players that fit so well in their system and in the process managed to get guys like Marcus Martin, Brandon Thomas and Bruce Ellington who could prove to be massive steals down the road.
The one guy, however, who will be a force in the future and be very productive as a rookie for San Francisco is their second round pick, Carlos Hyde.
Looking at what the 49ers have going in their backfield with Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter, LaMichael James and Marcus Lattimore, you might think that the Niners don’t need another running back. But Gore is entering the final year of his deal, Lattimore’s health is still a question mark and both James and Hunter have not shown enough to be given feature back carriers.
What San Fran got in Hyde is a big, strong athlete who has great agility and makes a living out of breaking tackles. He is clearly an every down back, is perfect in short yardage situations and can wear down defenses. Hyde is especially effective late in games when playing with a lead. He’s like Gore in a sense that he doesn’t have exceptional break away speed but he manages to get effective bursts throughout the coarse of games and will occasionally break a long run.
In recent years the NFL has become a passing league and teams have focused more on bettering their receiving corps and drafting those speedy receivers. During this time the 49ers have been one the the few teams that focused on dominating both lines of scrimmage and punishing opponents with the run. Getting Hyde ensures that this brand of football lives on at least in San Francisco.