49ers' LaMichael James Has Sprained MCL
San Francisco 49ers RB LaMichael James has a sprained MCL, according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. Little else is clear on James’ injury regarding the severity and recovery, but other than being San Francisco’s backup to Frank Gore, James was also expected to see time taking punt returning duties for the team.
After an uninspiring preseason where James saw a total of 16 carries in three preseason games, a sprained MCL only makes matters more complicated for the second year back.
James started the offseason on the right foot, coming into camp with an added 10 pounds of leg muscle. Looking for a bigger workload following his rookie season, where he sat on the bench most of the year, James had expectations to be involved in a larger part of the offense after developing some good chemistry with QB Colin Kaepernick. All that appears to be on hold until the team determines how much James’ sprained MCL will limit him.
James, who was drafted in the second round of the 2012 draft by San Francisco, came out of Oregon as an electric running back with a decorated collegiate career that included being a finalist in the 2010 Heisman race, finishing behind Heisman trophy winner Cam Newton and runner-up Andrew Luck.