Should the San Francisco 49ers Sign Lendale White?
The Seattle Seahawks surprisingly released Lendale White on Friday, despite the lack of a power running back. White runs with a punishing style, and played well in a two back attack with Tennessee.
"It became apparent at this time that LenDale was not ready to be a member of the Seattle Seahawks," Seahawks GM John Schneider said
While the initial opinion on the situation may be negative, the San Francisco 49ers should take a look at signing White if he can be had for cheap.
Here are the three reasons why.
Lendale's still good
Despite being in Jeff Fisher's doghouse late in his Titan career, the former USC back still runs with power and authority. Chris Johnson was simply the better option and displayed no liability in pass protection.
White reported to the Seahawks in great shape after he was traded by the Titans reportedly due to his weight. He was down to 220 pounds after being 250 pounds at times as a member of the Titans.
Lendale White would be a perfect fit in Jimmy Raye's offense. I find it hard to believe that he was cut for performance reasons.
"It just did not appear to be the right fit at this point in our program. We wish LenDale all the best with his future." stated John Schneider.
Alex Gibbs the Seahawks offensive line coordinator is respected leaguewide and has shown a preference to smaller, scatback style running backs. The maestro of the zone blocking style is most famous in Denver and also in Houston, Atlanta, and Oakland, has displayed the preference throughout his career.
Warrick Dunn, Justin Fargas, and Steve Slaton are all previous examples of what Gibbs wants in his running backs.
Lendale doesn't sucker punch his opponents
Early in the post draft process, the 49ers and Former Oregon running back and undrafted free agent LeGarrette Blount had agreed in principle. Later he would rebuke the verbal agreement and go on to sign with, oddly enough, the Tennessee Titans.
Blount and White share similar physical styles and it could be argued that they are both very similar except White has NFL experience and has had some success. Lendale is not a liability in pass protection, but has been described as "lazy" by some outsiders. His weight seems to be in control now, and even if that was the case it's definitely something that Coach Singletary cannot whip out of him.
As great of a running back as Frank Gore is, he needs help. With largely unproven Glen Coffee backing him up, this is another reason why the 49ers reached out to Blount. While Coffee had a promising preseason last year, he did not impress in the games he did play during the regular season.
Further, the 49ers look primed and ready to take control of the NFC West, and if they fulfill their promise will need a fresh Frank Gore late in the season. Gore has missed only a few games in his relatively young career through a variety of nagging ailments. The addition of White would allow the 49ers to keep Gore fresh and healthy, which is paramount to their success.
From a organizational standpoint, if Lendale White can be had cheap this is a low risk - potentially high reward move the Niners should look into.
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