SANTA CLARA -- During a group interview on Wednesday, a reporter began to ask Frank Gore about previous seasons when the 49ers didn't make the playoffs. The running back cut him off mid-sentence.
“We're going to the playoffs,” Gore said emphatically.
What makes him so sure? Gore said the 49ers simply have too much talent not make the postseason for the fourth straight season..
“We've got great coaches, we've got great guys,” he said. “... The last four years we've been spoiled. That's where we want to go, and that's how it goes.”
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One of the themes of the 49ers' four losses is that Gore has had scant carries in each of them. He rushed 14 times in Sunday's loss to the Rams and didn't get the ball when the 49ers were on the goal line at the end, something that Rams linebacker James Laurinaitis said surprised him given how adept Gore is at rooting out yards even when he's stopped.
But as was the case Sunday after the game, Gore stopped well short of campaigning for more carries.
“We've got great players all around – receivers, the backs,” he said. “I just think as a group we've got to do better, more consistent.”
Left tackle Joe Staley also said the team's issue was not the lack of running plays. The 49ers have attempted 265 passes and run the ball 231 times through eight games, the first time in the Jim Harbaugh era in San Francisco the ratio has favored the pass.
“It's not as simple as that,” Staley said about getting back to a run-heavy attack. “We have to do a better job of executing what's called. Watching the film, the plays are there to be made. And we've had a lot of opportunities to make plays and we just didn't do, for whatever reason that was.”
Gore had a similar take. “It's frustrating. It's real frustrating,” he said. “Because we've got so many weapons on the offensive side of the ball. The most … since I've been here. When you see things not clicking for us, you're like, why? Then you watch the film, it's just one person here, if this person picked up that block, if I would have done this. Once we just look at ourselves and take of our jobs – the one to one battles – we should be fine.”
Read Matt Barrows’ blogs and archives at www.sacbee.com/sf49ers.