Nick Bosa, Trent Williams, Fred Warner, George Kittle, heck, even Jimmy Garoppolo. Those are the names most likely to be evoked when asked who the 49ers’ most valuable player is entering the 2021.
Not the case if you are former 49ers safety Donte Whitner, however. The hitman gave a surprising answer when asked who he believes San Francisco’s most important player is on the Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks Show Tuesday afternoon.
“Raheem Mostert,” Whitner said on KNBR. “The velocity that he hits the holes with being in this outside-zone, stretch team. The decision making, being decisive enough and the fear that he puts in defenders, it’s invaluable. It’s the reason why George Kittle is open a lot of the times, it’s the reason that receivers are open coming across the middle. It’s because you have so many guys in tune with stopping the run, trying to beat Raheem to the gap, that they lose track of their pass responsibilities. As long as he can continue to gash defenses and get those splash plays, your play-action game is going to work all the time.”
It’s hard to argue that Mostert hasn’t been a dominant force when on the field for the 49ers over the last two seasons. The 29-year-old is averaging 5.3 yards per carry since 2019 and that’s just in regular season games. During the 2019 playoffs, Mostert averaged an incredible 6.34 yards on 53 carries.
Staying on the field is the key for Mostert, who missed half of last season with a variety of ailments. As long as one of the fastest players in the NFL maintains his health, he should help take the 49ers to incredible heights this season.
“I would say he’s the most valuable. You need Raheem Mostert on the field for 25 touches a game and your offense will perform.”
Listen to the full interview below