NFL Rumors: Lamichael James Heading to Baltimore Ravens to Fill Ray Rice's Position

( [email protected] ) Sep 09, 2014 12:02 PM EDT
As the Ravens were saying goodbye to Rice, the 49ers were letting James go for different reasons.
James was waived by the 49ers on Monday, but he will probably get another shot in the NFL. AP

Out with the old, in the with new. Or, in the case of many storylines in the NFL, out with the underperforming when you have two better performing backs in his place. That's the story out of San Francisco anyway, when the 49ers said goodbye to Lamichael James yesterday.

Looking up from third string behind Frank Gore and Carlos Hyde, the third-year running back requested and received his release from the 49ers on Monday.

James never could find the groove in his two seasons under coach Jim Harbaugh. He did have a few nice runs as a punt returner last season, but he rarely put anything worthwhile together coming out of San Francisco's backfield.

His 41 attempts for 184 yards over three seasons included just two carries in Sunday's beatdown of the Dallas Cowboys.

"We felt it was in the best interest of our team. And (we) made that move, and we'll sign an additional player," Coach Jim Harbaugh said about the decision in his Monday News Conference. "We wish LaMichael well, appreciate his contributions and wish him success moving forward in his career."

According to the Sacramento Bee, The roster addition turned out to be special-teams player and wide receiver Kassim Osgood,who was cut by the 49ers last week to avoid guaranteeing him his full contract.

He was somewhat productive as a rookie in 2012, but he was only put in the lineup after Kendall Hunter suffered an Achilles' tear late in the season. Last year, James rushed 12 times for 59 yards.

There is little doubt James will be given a try somewhere else in the league, and it just might be in Baltimore.

At just about the same time the 49ers were parting company with James, the Ravens cut their running back, Ray Rice, after the release of a video of him hitting his wife in an Atlantic City, N.J., hotel elevator. Rice was also suspended indefinitely by the NFL, so the chances of him coming back anytime soon are slim to none. The sad irony is that James plead guilty to domestic violence charges in 2010 while in college. As of yet, Rice has not been convicted.

James may also get a shot in Philadelphia where Chip Kelly, his college coach at Oregon, is now calling the shots.