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Marcus Lattimore: “I’m ready”

Marcus Lattimore

A year after the 49ers took him in the fourth round of the NFL draft, running back Marcus Lattimore says he’s healthy enough in recovery from the gruesome knee injury that ended his college career that he could take the field today.

Lattimore said his next steps aren’t about rehabbing his knee, they’re just about convincing 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh that he deserves significant playing time.

“If he wants to put me in, he’ll put me in,” Lattimore told GoGamecocks.com. “If I prove it in practice, I don’t think there’s no excuse why I can’t play. I’m ready.”

The knee injury Lattimore suffered in 2012 was so serious that sitting out his rookie season, as he did last year, was far from his biggest concern. When he first got hurt, Lattimore feared he’d never play football again.

“After my injury, I just wanted to walk again,” Lattimore said. “It was tough, very tough. We’re a playoff team, so we play 20-plus games. Being on that sideline, we got so close to the Super Bowl title the last three years. But I’m blessed to be in this situation. Never would have thought in a million years I’d be in this situation.”

Lattimore has heard the reports that backup running back LaMichael James is not in the 49ers’ long-term plans, which means Lattimore would move up to third on the depth chart behind Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter.

“If that happens, it does put me in that No. 3 spot,” Lattimore said. “But I’ve just got to go in there and work hard. I can pass-protect and run the ball. I’ve got to show that.”

If he can run now the way he ran at South Carolina, Lattimore will show a lot in San Francisco this year.

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48 Responses to “Marcus Lattimore: “I’m ready””
  1. TeamBalco says: Apr 20, 2014 11:08 AM

    Gore is gone after this season anyway.

  2. grantsbuds says: Apr 20, 2014 11:12 AM

    Good luck dude. Many a RB would love to run behind that line.
    Playing for Harbaw…not so much.

  3. forty9asty says: Apr 20, 2014 11:12 AM

    Maybe so…but people have been saying that for years

  4. thepftpoet says: Apr 20, 2014 11:14 AM

    Marcus Lattimore will have an okay career.

    Happy Easter.

    #Skol

  5. Lev says: Apr 20, 2014 11:15 AM

    Truly a feel-good story no matter what team you’re a fan of!

    Go get ‘em Marcus!

  6. discountdoublecheck says: Apr 20, 2014 11:15 AM

    Christine Michael > Marcus lattimore

  7. zachebers says: Apr 20, 2014 11:22 AM

    As a life long Rams fan, a healthy Lattimore is a scary thought.
    I had been looking forward to Gore’s retirement for years, and now we may have a Gore 2.0 on our hands with Lattimore, the kid is damn good.

  8. thesmartest1 says: Apr 20, 2014 11:24 AM

    I hope he succeeds.

  9. thebirdofprey2 says: Apr 20, 2014 11:25 AM

    I said it many times, before he got hurt this guy reminded me of Adrian Peterson in college. The way he carries himself, he is a world class dude and so many people are pulling for him for full recovery. He got drafted by a team I have no love for but hope Lattimore has a strong career.

  10. sportnorcal says: Apr 20, 2014 11:36 AM

    He has worked his butt off.
    I cant wait to see what he can do. I’d be rooting for this guy even if he wasn’t on my team.

  11. steelerstrong says: Apr 20, 2014 11:43 AM

    Wish him luck. Hope he makes it !!!

  12. adderal says: Apr 20, 2014 11:45 AM

    Proving he can pass protect will be key for him getting on the field. Hard not to root for him after what he has been through

  13. xestenz says: Apr 20, 2014 11:46 AM

    Out of all the pictures of Lattimore available, why one of him on the ground with a big brace on his knee, looking anything but ‘ready’?

  14. thefox61 says: Apr 20, 2014 11:58 AM

    And the Legion of Boom eagerly awaits you…

  15. carlsbadboltfan says: Apr 20, 2014 11:59 AM

    This man (yes, man NOT kid) is “above reproach”. Aldon Smith? Not so much.

  16. DaveKShape says: Apr 20, 2014 12:08 PM

    Man, I want this guy to do well so badly. A true warrior.

  17. realdealsteel says: Apr 20, 2014 12:10 PM

    Lattimore is about to be a featured running back in the NFL. Anybody who watched Gore last year saw a runningback on his last legs.

    I expect Lattimore to have a full grasp on that position by season’s end. He’s very fortunate to be running behind that good offensive line of the 49ers too. Good luck to him.

  18. zhawk12 says: Apr 20, 2014 12:32 PM

    As a Seahawk fan since 1976 I admire Marcus Lattimore as a man and wish him well, EXCEPT on the two days a year he plays our Seahawks.

  19. qdog112 says: Apr 20, 2014 12:34 PM

    In the era where players build a brand and a “HOUSE” before they take a snap, this young man is what college sports should be about.

    Lattimore’s return to the field should be celebrated by sports fans everywhere, who can imagine what he has had to endure, mentally and physically.

    He is the poster boy for what can happen from the NCAA exploitation model.

  20. braceyourselffor12 says: Apr 20, 2014 12:36 PM

    With all the adversity he has overcome anyone who calls themselves a fan of football can only wish him success in this League. It is with great pride and anticipation that I get to call him a 49er.

    GO NINERS!!!!!

    P.S Happy Easter PFTers.

  21. quicktaker says: Apr 20, 2014 12:44 PM

    “After my injury, I just wanted to walk again,”. I guess I am the only one who doesn’t want him to play. I am afraid he will shred his knee again. You can’t put a price tag on the ability to walk.

  22. 6thsense10 says: Apr 20, 2014 12:56 PM

    The poster child for turning pro as soon as you have the opportunity. Lattimore lost serious cash on his rookie deal and at the running back position where your career is pretty much over by age 30 young college players can not afford to lose any money. Lattimore may have a decent career ala Willis Mcgahee but both got cheated out of a truly great career while playing another season essentially for free.

  23. kindasporty says: Apr 20, 2014 1:01 PM

    Gotta respect a guy like that. He could easily show up to camp expecting he’s got a high spot on the depth chart. Instead, he just says he’s got no excuses now, and he’s gotta prove himself in practice. He also acknowledges he’s the fourth running back now. Again, he’s not expecting anyone to give him anything. That’s refreshing.

  24. haansel82 says: Apr 20, 2014 1:04 PM

    Ive been a fan of Lattimore since his 2010 game against Georgia. Ive never seen so many broken tackles. The guy used to run like AP and has often been compared to Arian Foster. He has already had both of his knees decimated though, after a year to rehab, hopefully he hasn’t lost any confidence on the field.

  25. alchemistcirca1979 says: Apr 20, 2014 1:09 PM

    Even if he has an average NFL career, he still beat the odds. Im cheering for you young man!

    Happy Easter folks.

  26. ravenswhat says: Apr 20, 2014 1:27 PM

    If he was ready, Gore would’ve been forced errrr asked to take a pay cut. End of story.

  27. mgborgli says: Apr 20, 2014 1:30 PM

    taking

  28. clintblairjr says: Apr 20, 2014 1:30 PM

    Im a Texan fan but cannot wait to see this kid play. He was great in college and will be fun to watch!

  29. psauer4 says: Apr 20, 2014 2:15 PM

    Great story. Wish he played for my Steelers but wish him the best. warrior

  30. goldblooded415 says: Apr 20, 2014 2:34 PM

    Good luck Lattimore!

  31. time2speakup says: Apr 20, 2014 3:52 PM

    You win some – and you lose some. As a Niner Nutt, I naturally refer to Marcus, then there’s Aldon. Oh well. Talk about a full swing of the ol’ pendulum.

  32. mackcarrington says: Apr 20, 2014 4:12 PM

    This young man should just be grateful that he CAN walk. He should forget about playing football and find some other endeavor in his life.

  33. dirtysouthniner says: Apr 20, 2014 5:49 PM

    Its his life,hes obviously dedicated to the point where he walks fine, All of our NFL warriors put their bodies on the line for doing what they and we love. Its not just a game to them. I dont understand why some of u dont want him to play…Happy easter and good luck to ALL next year,even the hawks

  34. ketch20too says: Apr 20, 2014 7:51 PM

    If he comes back fully healthy, he will be the steal of that draft.

  35. filthymcnastyi says: Apr 20, 2014 8:49 PM

    Does anyone else try to be the first to “like” their own post?

  36. cfballfan1 says: Apr 20, 2014 9:00 PM

    Excited to see what Lattimore can do at this level.

  37. joefelicelli says: Apr 20, 2014 9:40 PM

    At a time when the Niners need a ton of positive news, this kid can pull all the focus away from the knuckleheads on the roster (including the head coach sometimes) with some strong early performances in mini-camp, training camp, and the first carry of the preseason.

    I hope he gets all the way back. He had to play for Spurrier for the prime of his college career…he deserves some hard-nosed running game time in SF to get to carry the ball again.

  38. thegrigga49 says: Apr 20, 2014 10:03 PM

    It’s so funny people think Gore is finished…he just made the pro bowl AGAIN….I’m rooting for Marcus too but Gore is no where close to being done. There was absolutely no drop off in his game last season. He was actually better then 2012. If you want to see a RB who is on his last legs go look at Steven Jackson. Frank Gore is The Ultimate Warrior.

  39. colindylan says: Apr 20, 2014 10:25 PM

    Die hard Rams fan here , but it’s hard not to cheer for Lattimore , I wish him all the best .

  40. khmer379 says: Apr 20, 2014 10:43 PM

    Ight Tevin Campbell lol

  41. thegrigga49 says: Apr 20, 2014 10:52 PM

    Frank Gore is the most underrated, disrespected player of his era.

  42. ronfai says: Apr 21, 2014 2:54 AM

    This guy is gonna be a beast. Forget Gore 2.0 he’s AP 2.0

  43. politicallyincorrect says: Apr 21, 2014 8:05 AM

    not a 49er fan…

    wishing Lattimore all the best; kids been through a lot.. very talented runner and class act

  44. politicallyincorrect says: Apr 21, 2014 8:05 AM

    no disrespect to Gore; agree he is a very solid and very underrated player

  45. eaglesnoles05 says: Apr 21, 2014 9:17 AM

    All I can say is what we know so far from what I’ve seen from both at the same point in their career- Lattimore was a better running back than Gore in college, and blew out his knee one less time (2) than Gore did in college (3).

    If you don’t know, then you don’t know. Can’t wait to see what happens.

  46. eaglesnoles05 says: Apr 21, 2014 9:26 AM

    And yeah right. He should turn down the at-least 500k/yr minimum salary for doing what he is most passionate about in life, after working harder than is imaginable to get back out there, and do something else with his life. Some other endeavor. Sure.

  47. gmfw7 says: Apr 21, 2014 9:49 AM

    said last year when they drafted him that he would be the steal of the 2013 draft. unfortunately we have shady, so i couldn’t really pull for my team to risk a mid-late rounder on him. but no matter what team he plays for, i really hope this kid has a successful and healthy career. and all you people saying he should just be happy he can walk, and forget about football… just stop it. some of these guys love this game more than any of us could understand, and there is nothing else in their lives that they could imagine doing. he’s been working his butt off for probably the better part of the past decade (if you count high school) and now all his hard work will pay off. you people complain when some of these guys seem like they only care about money and not the game, but then criticize a guy for risking his health to do what he loves more than anything. define hypocrisy….

  48. bornahawker says: Apr 22, 2014 1:36 AM

    To get smashed by seattles defense!

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