Standouts from San Francisco 49ers’ Week 3 Loss

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Frank Gore and Carlos Hyde

Sep 21, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore (21) looks on during the second half against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

For years, the 49ers identity has been as a running team, but San Francisco’s top two running backs combined for just nine carries on Sunday against the Cardinals. Frank Gore carried the ball only six times for 10 yards, while his backup Carlos Hyde toted just three times for 13 yards.

Hyde had a huge six-yard touchdown run in the second quarter, bursting through tackles and diving into the endzone for his second career touchdown. But the run game was basically abandoned after that.

More from Colin Kaepernick

The ground game was almost all Colin Kaepernick in the second half, as he either kept the ball on option keeps, or tucked the ball and scrambled when the pocket broke down.

Handing the ball to Gore and Hyde will take some of the pressure off the quarterback. The pass rush for Arizona was extremely good on Sunday, and with the game being played nearly strictly through the air, the Cardinals could freely rush Kaepernick.

The offense needs to get back to its identity over the next few weeks. Gore and Hyde need to carry the load for this team, as Kaepernick is proving week after week he cannot carry his team to victory.