This past Monday the San Francisco 49ers officially suspended disgruntled running back Brandon Jacobs for the rest of the 2012 regular season following his numerous social media statements relating to his displeasure about his role with the team. Jacobs was a much sought after free agent this past off season, and the 49ers signed him with the hope that he would offer a much needed spark to their red zone difficulties. Unfortunately Jacobs sustained a knee injury during the preseason, preventing him from participation for a good portion of the year. When he was healthy enough to return, the 49ers found themselves without the need for his services, as their tandem of Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter was leading the league in rushing. Their success more or less closed the door to Jacobs being able to contribute.
After more than a few healthy inactive games for the 49ers, Jacobs took to the social media outlets to vent his frustration. Including recent photographs of himself in full uniform playing for the New York Giants, his previous employer. He also went as far as to post a photograph of his two Super Bowl rings that he won with the Giants, and obvious shot in the direction of the 49ers decision makers.
Just this past Saturday Jacobs took to Instagram with a quote about his recent pictures. "I am on this team rotting away so why would I wanna put any pics up of anything that say Niners. This is by far the worst year I ever had, I’ll tell you like I told plenty of others."
That comment obviously caused a stir amongst 49ers fans, and Jacobs received a bit of a backlash for his brash behavior. In response to his criticism, Jacobs used another social media avenue to explain his previous comments.
On Twitter he offered "I don’t understand why people are angry at me because I wanna do what I am paid to do, I am a competitive person, I think people should be mad if I didn’t wanna play…As for all of my Instagram photos I don’t have any Niner pics, if you find me some pics I’ll put them up."
Even as far back as last month Jacobs has been using Twitter to voice his displeasure. Only last month his comment was of a more angry nature. "Never work in a place where you hate your boss so much, you should be happy at work" hash tag YouLiveAndYouLearn.
Though Jacobs recanted the statement, and claimed that it was meant for a family member who was dealing with employment issues, it’s fair to say that his situation could have easily been the more likely root of the Tweet.
Following the suspension head coach Jim Harbaugh declined to comment on the issue. In true Harbaugh fashion, he simply stated that he intended to invoke his Fifth Amendment right.
Again, that was not the case for Jacobs though, he again reverted to Twitter following the news of his suspension quoting "Thank you all for all of your support, I am doing wonderful it’s not a big deal things happen, I am strong enough to get through this, again thank all of you for your support" hash tag IWILLBEBACK.
In the end, his suspension can more or less be termed in conduct detrimental to the team. And although many fans might view this suspension as not that big of a deal since he really didn’t produce that much on the field anyway. There is logic in thinking that he should have played more and that the 49ers might want to keep him around. What if Frank Gore happens to sustain an injury that keeps him out of action? Then what do the 49ers do? They have already lost Kendall Hunter for the year due to injury. The only running back after that is rookie LaMichael James. And though he is very good with a ton of potential, the 49ers are staring a playoff run dead in the face right now. Do they possibly think that James can be the one to carry the running load deep into the playoffs if they lose Gore? With his suspension, Jacobs is not free to sign with another team, meaning that the 49ers could activate him if things go south. But there cannot be a very good chance that he will be at full potential, or that he will even want to or try to.
Again it appears that the 49ers are choosing to dance on the edge of the blade with their offense. If it works out, great, but if it doesn’t, the 49ers could be in for a world of backlash from their fans. These types of moves do not leave a lot of room for error. They had better be Super Bowl bound to make the decisions legitimate.
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