Carlos Hyde describes himself as “violent.” That is, when the San Francisco 49ers second-round pick is on the field.
Off it, the former Ohio St. Buckeye running back is all smiles. The No. 57 overall selection in the 2014 draft also has a knack for finding the end zone, racking up 37 touchdowns in 41 collegiate contests.
Even before he was drafted by the 49ers, Hyde says he compared himself to Frank Gore. Now, he’s No. 21’s understudy.
Here’s a transcript of Hyde’s recent conversation with reporters at Levi’s Stadium, the new home of the 49ers.
Note: Questions are paraphrased but Hyde’s answers are directly transcribed.
Is the 49ers offensive philosophy similar to what you were used to at Ohio State?
No, I think it’s actually a little different here. They run the ball a lot more here. So, being a running back here is awesome.
You described your running style as violent. What do you mean by that?
Just the way I run with anger. I don’t shy away from contact. I’m a relentless runner, a guy who’s always scratching and clawing for those extra yards. So, that’s why I describe it as violent.
You don’t seem like an angry guy right now. What’s your transformation like?
I’m only angry on the field. That’s when guys are trying to hit me. Off the field I’m a nice guy.
Hyde opted for Ohio St. over Florida because he didn’t see a fit in Urban Meyer’s spread offense. As it turned out, they both ended up with the Buckeyes anyways.
It’s crazy how it worked out. Coach Meyer ended up there (at Ohio St.)…I saw him in the locker room one time, [he said] ‘Isn’t it crazy that I’m here now, and we’re together?…We just laughed.
What do you think of the 49er’s running game? What do you see when you see No. 21?
I think their running game is great. It’s a huge success in their offense.
When I see Frank Gore, I really pay attention to Frank Gore. That was a guy that before I even got drafted, I was already comparing myself to. Him and like Marshawn Lynch because those guys, they’re relentless with the ball and they run tough.
So, being able to watch Frank Gore and being able to have an opportunity to learn from him is awesome. not too many people get to learn from a guy who is probably going to the Hall of Fame. So, I’m going to really pay attention to him and take notes.
Have you had a chance to talk to Gore?
He’s in here early in the morning, getting a workout in when I’m getting here, he’s leaving. I haven’t had a chance to talk to him yet, but I’m sure I’ll have the opportunity soon.
However, the two running backs did get a chance to meet before the draft.
I met him when I was working out down in Miami. What’s crazy is, the last thing I was thinking is I’ll be on the same team as him, but it was great working out there to be around him.
How can you take your game to the next level?
I feel like I’m just taking my game to the next level by once again just learning from Frank—becoming a better runner. Seeing what he does right. Just learning from other guys’ mistakes so I make sure I don’t do that, and taking my weaknesses and turning them into strengths.
How much pass-protection did you do at Ohio St.?
I did a lot of pass protection. That was a huge thing at Ohio St. If you can’t pass protect, there’s a good chance you probably won’t play. So, you have to learn it. So, I’ve done it a lot.
How about your conversation with Jim Harbaugh? How did he welcome you here?
When I first got here we had a small conversation in the training room, just introducing ourselves…We haven’t really spoken about the Michigan-Ohio St. rivalry. I’m sure come November we will.
Up next in the Q&A series will be linebacker Shayne Skov.