What Frank Gore Means For The Indianapolis Colts
- Updated: March 11, 2015
There have been a few things that have been a staple of the 49ers the last couple of seasons. Coach Jim Harbaugh was the coach that led them back from the obscurity into the public eye. Heading into this season, he has been let go and is now the coach at the University of Michigan. But there was one player that was even more of a staple for the 49ers and his name was Frank Gore. For years, he has been the backbone of the organization and could be counted on at any time to make things happen. But like things in life, all good things must come to an end. Gore was a free agent this offseason and the 49ers made an offer, but the veteran felt there were greener pastures somewhere else. The 31 year old running back is now headed to the AFC South, as he will now be joining the Indianapolis Colts after agreeing to a 3 year deal worth $12 million (8.5 million guaranteed). But what will his impact be on the Colts organization?
The Indianapolis Colts have been a team that has been dependent on the passing game for majority of the Andrew Luck era. So much so that Luck gets hit a lot when in the pocket and when escaping defenders trying to bring him down. The Colts have been successful doing that the last few years and have made the playoffs, but even with that they know they need to make a change to help Luck. With the addition of Gore, the Colts get a guy that is very dependable. Gore is not a fumbler and he is known for being a tough runner that gets the tough yards. His North-South running style will fit in with this team perfectly as he will get less defenders in the box than he would with his previous team, the 49ers. The one thing that will be different with Frank in Indianapolis may be the style of offense, but all indications are he will get his opportunities to make his impact on the ground. Another big difference that will need to be watched is the lack of a lead back for Frank. For majority of his career, Gore has worked well with a fullback in front of him. As for the Colts, they usually do not use a fullback. If they are to get the max out of Gore, they may want to look around and add one and feature him a little bit more on the field. A perfect mixture of Luck dropping back passing and Gore with a fullback in front of him would be ideal for the Colts offense next season.
Another good thing that Gore will add to this team is an ability to control the clock. With an offense that passes so much, clock management is a hard thing to get a handle on. With each incomplete pass, the clock stops and the opposing defense gets time to rest a little more with quicker possessions. Gore has never had an issue moving the chains. He has always had a nose for the first down line and that will more than likely continue to with the Colts. And along with the Colts adding a running back that can consistently get them first downs and tough yards, the Colts can now chew the clock a little bit more. If the Colts are consistently able to do that, then look for their defense to get less time on the field. And in case no one noticed, the Patriots lit the Colts up in the playoffs. In order to win in the Super Bowl the Colts needed to add someone of Gore’s elk that could help them control the game. And if the offensive line is able to get more of a push this season compared to last, then their chances of winning the title get even better than they were last year.
For Gore, this is probably a bittersweet signing. On one hand, he has a better chance to win a title to close out his great career. But on the other side, he had to leave a franchise that meant much more than just a team to him in San Francisco. Gore will be adding some veteran leadership and toughness to a team that needs it, especially in the running game. And with Luck as the quarterback, Gore is playing with a quarterback that is the best he has ever shared the backfield with. He may be a veteran running back and he may be a little longer in the tooth than he once was, but Gore is still productive and still enough to potentially help the Colts bring a title back to Indianapolis.