The 49ers have promised Brian Westbrook a roster spot by guaranteeing his $1.25 million base salary, but they won’t hand him the backup running back job.
“It’s not an open-and-closed deal,” offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye said Wednesday. “I think Anthony Dixon is
very much in the running for vying for time at that position as the guy
who goes in and replaces Gore.”
Dixon provides the power, while Westbrook can play on passing downs. The 49ers should have a nice little running back committee should Gore get hurt. The question is whether the 49ers will use Westbrook much if Gore stays healthy.
While The Inconvenient Truth is a large man, he’s a terrific pass catcher. Considering Westbrook’s history, the former Eagle may best be used as a high price insurance policy that the 49ers only use if they absolutely have to.