Hyde is expected to be participating in Saturday night’s first full-squad practice, having spent the first day of camp on the non-football-injury list because of a leg strain.
“Right now I’m just really focused on getting a good chemistry with the offensive line,” Hyde said. “We’ll try to build it so we can go into that season so I know exactly how guys are and I can catch a rhythm and get going.”
Hyde ran for 333 yards as a rookie understudy to Frank Gore. Hyde also caught 12 passes for 68 yards, and he believes he has the receiving skills to help in that dimension, as was the case at Ohio State.
“When I got the opportunity to catch a ball, I made it happen,” Hyde said of his college days. “Here, things are different, and now I have more opportunity to get out and be a receiver.”
He’s not the only running back who might be catching more screen passes and swing routes from Colin Kaepernick. Reggie Bush is the top candidate to handle that task, and Hyde has studied how Bush has become the NFL’s active leader in receptions among running backs. The story also pointed out pass protection is going to be a major factor in who sees time. Right now Hyde projects as the early down back with Bush taking on his normal pass catching role as he has with the Saints and Lions in his career.