Gore fueled by desire to prove doubters wrong
"When I turned 29, would I be able to be (the same) Frank Gore? Now, I'm 30. I'm going to keep working and training hard." -- Frank Gore (AP)
SANTA CLARA -- Running back Frank Gore reeled off the five names in four seconds.
Those were the five running backs selected ahead of Gore in the 2005 draft. And those players helped fuel him through the first eight seasons of his NFL career -- a time in which he became the 49ers' all-time leading rusher with 8,839 rushing yards.
These days, Gore also finds inspiration from the No. 30.
Gore turned 30 years old last month, and he knows full well that people expect his play to drop off because of his age.
"I feel every year it's something with me," Gore said Thursday on the final day of the 49ers' three-day mandatory minicamp. "I got to overcome everything every year. Coming off a hip injury, will I be able to be the same? When I turned 29, would I be able to be (the same) Frank Gore? Now, I'm 30. I'm going to keep working and training hard."
Gore had the second-most rushing yards in a single season in his career last year. His 321 rushing attempts, including the postseason, and his 12 rushing touchdowns were career-highs.
That explains why 49ers head athletic trainer Jeff Ferguson has ordered Gore to stay off the field during the team's offseason program. After all, there's nothing to be gained from subjecting Gore to risks involved in the offseason program.
"(I'm) just getting my body back," Gore said. "I want to be fresh when I get back on the field.
"I'll just go hard and prove everybody wrong again."