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LaMichael James released by San Francisco 49ers

LaMichael James is on his way out of San Francisco.

Buried in the pecking order behind Frank Gore and Carlos Hyde, the third-year running back has requested and received his release from the 49ers on Monday, according to his agent. The team later confirmed his release.

James struggled to emerge in two seasons under coach Jim Harbaugh, seeing time as a punt returner last season, but rarely as a piece of the puzzle in San Francisco's backfield.

"Everyone kind of realized it was best for both sides," Sperbeck told the San Francisco Chronicle's Eric Branch.

His 41 attempts for 184 yards over three seasons included just two totes in Sunday's throttling of the Dallas Cowboys. The rookie Hyde saw seven carries in relief of Gore, clarifying that James was nothing more than a deep reserve for this run-heavy attack. James saw just 139 snaps during his run with the team.

The 49ers also announced the re-signing of wide receiver Kassim Osgood to take James' place on the roster.

Due $641,718 this season and another $792,577 in 2015, James is subject to waivers before hitting the open market.

One potential landing spot for the former second-round pick? Potentially the Baltimore Ravens, who announced the release of Ray Rice just minutes after the James news landed.

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