Growing up in a broken home can wreck havoc on a young man trying to live up to his expectations. Raised in Fort Walton Beach, FL, San Francisco 49ers tailback Glen Coffee saw his parent’s divorce when he was just a teenager, something that could have spelled disaster for him. Instead he chose to take a different route, embracing his faith and realizing his potential as evidenced by his being selected in the third round of the 2009 NFL draft.
“For a while, living up here (Florida), I was depressed,” Coffee said. “I wasn’t having fun. I wasn’t satisfied. There had to be something more, and I found Christ. That put everything in perspective for me.”
Before deciding to live life on his terms Coffee was immersed in the high school life of a highly touted athlete. He was more concerned with late-night parties and doing whatever he could to have a good time. He has since done away with all negative activities in an attempt to usher positivity and goodness into this life. He seems to have succeeded, with a career at Alabama which saw him finish with 510 carries for 2,107 yards and 14 touchdowns.
At 6 feet, 209 pounds Coffee would not appear to be a powerful runner. Looks can be deceiving however, and in his case they certainly are. He has patterned his game to include not only the ability to turn the corner and make a dash for the end zone but to run would be defenders over as well.
The 49ers showed a great deal of faith when they selected the former Alabama back, 74th overall in last April’s draft. Team brass knew that there was a good chance incumbent ball carrier Frank Gore would miss some time this season due to injury. Gore has not played a full season since 2006, missing one game in ’07 and two last season because of ankle issues.
Last Sunday in Minnesota saw Gore go down because of a strained ankle, and early reports have him out of action for three weeks. With St. Louis and Atlanta coming town in back to back games, followed by the team’s bye week, Coffee will start at least the next two games for the 49ers.
Head coach Mike Singletary doesn’t appear to be too concerned with that fact that a rookie will be replacing his team’s most potent offensive threat; “Obviously, you’re missing one of the best backs in the league,’’ he said. “But we’re confident in Glen Coffee. … He can carry the load.”
Coffee himself appears to be relatively unhappy with his performance in Gore’s stead as he gained only 54 yards on 25 carries against the Vikings. “I felt I should’ve been ready for the start of the game,” said Coffee, ““I didn’t do what I needed to do in the first half. I have to be ready when the game starts.”
The first year RB looks to bounce back strong this weekend against a highly overmatched Rams team. “I’ve had almost a full game under my belt, so I know what to expect and how to feel,” Coffee said. “There isn’t supposed to be any drop-off. The coaches expect that and I expect that of myself.”
The 49ers should come out with a vengeance this weekend after last Sunday’s loss to Minnesota.
Here’s guessing the 0-3 Rams will be force fed up a steaming cup o joe.