"Sad Frank Gore" is a depressing figure to watch as he winds down what could be his last season in San Francisco.
The longtime stalwart has gone from workhorse to part-time pony as the 49ers -- for whatever reason -- have gone away from the formula that has worked so well in the past.
The Inconvenient Truth has become the Invisible Truth.
The former lifeblood of the Niners' offense sounded dejected and frustrated after Sunday's 24-13 loss to the Oakland Raiders.
"It's tough," he said, per the San Francisco Chronicle. "It's my last year under contract. I want to go out with a shot at least to hold the trophy. We'll let the chips fall. I'll still keep fighting with my teammates. Hopefully, other teams will help us. We have to move forward from this one. But it's tough."
At 7-6, with the currently dominant Seahawks on deck, the 49ers need a world of help to get back to the playoffs.
The offense has been the biggest culprit in Jim Harbaugh's team, stubbing its toe this season. Gore ran for 5.3 yards a pop against a mediocre Raiders run defense Sunday but somehow had just 12 carries.
"The coaches are the ones calling the plays," Gore said. "Whatever the coach calls, I'm going to give 110 percent. I'm only a player; I only do what my coach says. You've got to ask the coach."
When asked why the running game vanished Harbaugh offered no insight: "Why we didn't get the ball to Frank Gore more? Yeah."
Thanks for that, coach. Say, how did you like Oakland?
The diminished use of Gore is one of the saddest byproducts of the Fall of The Harbaughian Empire.
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