yle Juszczyk went to Harvard, ya know.
The 49ers fullback namedropped the prestigious university during his appearance on 95.7 The Game’s “Damon & Ratto” Wednesday while defending his coach Kyle Shanahan. Many have been quick to place blame on Shanahan for the high rate of Lance’s rushing, but Juszczyk isn’t buying the criticism.
"Trey’s a big, strong guy,” Juszczyk told hosts Damon Bruce and Ray Ratto. “He can do a good job running between the tackles. It’s not necessarily that much safer running on the outside than the inside. These are all NFL defenses. Quarterbacks run all over this league. I really gotta come to Kyle’s defense here. I didn’t think he was in putting Trey in a bad position. I think he was putting Trey in a good position.”
Juszczyk said Lance’s injury was a matter of chance.
“I was a math major at Harvard, so I’m gonna drop some math on you,” Juszczyk said. “When you flip a coin, 50 percent it’s gonna be heads or tails. That never changes how many times you flip the coin. You get tails 10 times in row, that 11th row, it’s still 50-50. What I’m trying to get at an how it correlates with Trey – he broke his ankle. That’s a fluke injury. That’s not something that comes with wear and tear. That’s not something that comes with, ‘Man, I’ve run the ball five times this game, my ankle’s getting weak, it’s gonna snap on the sixth run.’”
At the crux of Juszczyk’s argument is the belief that Lance’s dual-threat capabilities ultimately would have opened up a lot of things for the 49ers offense. He also didn’t think Lance would continue to carry the ball about 12 times a game, like he did in his first four NFL starts.
“Yeah, he was asked to asked to run some run plays, but I think it was a strength of his and a strength of our team,” Juszczyk said. “That really puts defenses in bind. Yes, he might have been on a pace to be more than all these other guys in history, but I don't think that was gonna continue. Eventually that was gonna set up a lot of things for our offense."
Now the 49ers are moving back to business with veteran Jimmy Garoppolo under center, who was QB1 from midway through the 2017 season, barring injuries..
“You build a lot of familiarity over that time,” Juszczyk said. “It just starts flowing again.”
Juszczyk also responded to any impressions that the 49ers were callous in their on-field response to Lance’s injury.
“Unfortunately, you have to move on at quarterback,” Juszczyk said. ”Jimmy is quarterback now. We have to win now. We can’t sulk over Trey being out. We support him, of course. We’re all reaching out and making sure he’s OK.”