The 49ers’ first preseason game of 2014 left many, including myself, wondering whether it was merely a case of offseason rust or if it’s an indicator of things to come? A 23-3 loss is hardly the message the Super Bowl favorites wanted to send. In the midst of this disastrous performance, there were some bright spots and flickers of hope. Here are some of the studs and duds from Thursday’s game:
Stud: Carlos Hyde
If there was one bright spot coming from a 23-3 shellacking, it was Carlos Hyde. The rookie carried the ball only five times, but Hyde made sure his carries counted. Hyde totaled 39 yards and averaged 7.8 yards per carry. Hyde took the first snap of the night and ran with a mix of power, speed, and mobility. Although Gore is still the top-dog in the 49ers backfield, Hyde is making his case for a timeshare. While it’s still very early in the season, I don’t think anyone would be surprised if Hyde ends up taking a bulk of Gore’s snaps at some point.