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Kyle Shanahan responds to Raheem Mostert criticism ahead of 49ers-Dolphins

© Cincinnati Enquirer-USA TODAY NETWORK

Raheem Mostert has made headlines this week after an interview with Tyler Dunne, quoting him as criticizing the 49ers.

He said the Dolphins are a more talented team and seemed to take a shot — before later denying that’s what he meant by it on Twitter — at Jimmy Garoppolo.

“We have a quarterback who can actually sling it,” Mostert said.

It got Deebo Samuel to respond to Mostert’s quotes on Twitter, starting this week with a little online kerfuffle.

But the issue Mostert seemed to be most concerned about was a disagreement with the team over how to deal with a knee cartilage issue.

At the time of the injury, Kyle Shanahan said he expected Mostert to undergo an arthroscopic procedure that was expected to keep him out six-to-eight weeks.

That changed when Mostert opted for a different surgery.

“The prognosis on Monday was what we had, six to eight,” Shanahan said on September 15 of last season. “In further review, looking at other opinions, there’s a longer surgery you can do that will put him out for the year and that’s the way we’re going to go.”

Shanahan said at the time that he wasn’t surprised by the decision.

“Once I heard more stuff after the press conference, no, it made sense. I don’t think there was much of a decision to make after hearing some of the stuff.”

Mostert never returned and admitted to Dunne that he decided to sit out the season out of consideration for his long-term health and career.

This all followed a bit of a contract dispute in which Mostert wanted to be paid in line with Tevin Coleman, rather than the high-value special teams contract he’d signed to, at one point requesting a trade.

Per Dunne’s piece:

“It isn’t right,” Mostert says. “And it’s up to the player to step up and say, ‘This isn’t right. I don’t think this is the best of my interest.’ Sometimes, you don’t get that with players. But, for me, that was my case. I knew exactly what I wanted. I knew exactly how I’d handle the situation. I knew exactly — coming off rehab — what I needed to do in order to get back on the field.”

He so many nicks throughout his turbulent NFL career, Mostert wanted to be as healthy as he possibly could. Knee injuries can render running backs sad, slow reincarnations of what they once were. You’re often deemed damaged goods. Replaceable.

Sent to the Goodwill bin in favor of someone younger, healthier, with much less mileage. Mostert weighed all pros and all cons when he decided to sit out the season. He knew how much he was risking — the decision absolutely pissed the 49ers off — but he also knew how hard he would work.

When free agency hit, he believes the 49ers used his decision against him.

‘Yeah, they did,’ Mostert says. ‘They definitely did. I moved on from the situation. I have the opportunity to see them.’”

Kyle Shanahan responded to the criticism on Monday, acknowledging the difference of opinions without getting too specific.

“Oh yeah, there was all different types of opinions during that,” Shanahan said. “From where we were at, Raheem, his agent, everybody just like there always is, there’s first opinions, there’s second opinions, so yeah, there’s always different opinions on those things.”

Mike McDaniel, Shanahan’s former right-hand man, brings his Miami Dolphins to Levi’s Stadium on Sunday. It’s unclear if Mostert, who missed last week with with a knee injury, will play. Jeff Wilson Jr. also left the game with an injury, but there haven’t been any indications it was severe.


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