August 31, 2011
San Francisco 49ers: Is The Frank Gore Contract Extension A Good Deal?
The question now arises as to whether or not this is a good deal for San Francisco.
The 49ers have given Gore $13.5 million in guaranteed money and a $21 million deal overall. Gore will also earn $4.9 million this season, which means he could make $25.9 million over the next four years.
This locks in Gore through the 2014 season, and I believe it is a good deal for the 49ers. Gore seems fully recovered from last season’s hip injury, and if he can play productively for even three of the four years, the 49ers will have gotten their money’s worth.
Gore is the heart and soul of the 49ers’ offense. In his previous six seasons with San Francisco, Gore rushed for 6,414 yards with a 4.7 yards per carry average. He also has 44 career touchdowns to his credit.
Gore has rushed for more than 1,000 yards in four of the past five seasons. He was well on his way to doing it again in 2010 when his season was cut short with five games remaining due to a severe hip injury. In his 11 games in 2011, Gore rushed for 853 yards.
49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh will not overwork and abuse Gore the way former head coach Mike Singletary did. I expect both Anthony Dixon and Kendall Hunter to get meaningful carries and make a positive impact. This should keep Gore fresher and less prone to injury.
Gore should also embrace the West Coast offense currently being implemented by Harbaugh. The 49ers will be much more diverse offensively, and that will open up running lanes for Gore. Opposing defenses will no longer be able to put eight or nine men in the box and just punish him every time he touches the ball.
Harbaugh will also use Gore more effectively out of the backfield as a receiver. I think this will enable him to be more productive and get into the open field more frequently.
This deal basically ensures Gore will be a 49er the remainder of the most productive years of his career. At 28 years of age, Gore should have a few good years left, and the 49ers will reap that benefit.
This is a good deal for both sides. It gives Gore the security and professional respect he wanted, plus it gives the 49ers a happy player who will give his all to the team over the next four years.
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