SANTA CLARA -- Running back Kendall Hunter's season likely is over after an MRI examination revealed a torn ACL in his right knee, the 49ers confirmed to CSNBayArea.com on Saturday morning.
Hunter sustained the non-contact injury early in Friday's practice. His right knee buckled awkwardly as he tried to make a move on cornerback Perrish Cox after catching a Blaine Gabbert swing pass near the right sideline.
Hunter got up and hobbled back toward the line of scrimmage and sat down. A couple of teammates, coach Jim Harbaugh and the team’s training staff came to check on him. After a few minutes, Hunter got to his feet and walked under his own power back to the 49ers locker room.
Hunter opened camp as the team’s No. 2 running back behind Frank Gore. He has proven he can handle the job in his three seasons in that role. The 49ers will rely on having good depth at the position, but they need to see if Carlos Hyde and Marcus Lattimore can fulfill the requirements before it’ll be known how much they can expect this season.
Hunter, whose contract expires at the end of this season, was a fourth-round draft pick in 2011 from Oklahoma State. In 43 career games, Hunter has rushed for 1,202 yards and seven touchdowns in 262 rushing attempts for a 4.6-yard average. He missed the final five games of the 2012 season with a partially torn Achilles tendon.