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San Francisco 49ers RB Frank Gore is priority No. 1 for Bears

The 49ers running back is averaging more than five yards per carry for the first time since the 2006 season, when he led the NFC in rushing.

Brian Bahr

After allowing fewer than 100 yards rushing in five of its first six games of the season, the Chicago Bears defense has allowed more than 100 in each of the last three weeks. The team now has the tough task of stopping the NFL's No. 1 rushing offense, led by Frank Gore. On Friday, Bears defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli spoke to Jeff Dickerson of ESPN Chicago about the veteran 49ers running back:

"He's physical, wow. He's downhill, one cut, and every yard he's fighting for. He twists and turns, he fights, this guy is never down. He's never down."

After nine games, Gore has 753 yards rushing on only 140 carries with five touchdowns. His 5.4 yards per carry are third among running backs with more than 100 carries and the highest mark in Gore's career since the 2006 season when he first took over the starting running back job.

Gore, 29, has been aided and kept fresh by the contributions of second-year running back Kendall Hunter and second-year quarterback Colin Kaepernick, each of whom have rushed for more than five yards per carry. To keep the 49ers offense in check, the Bears defense will have the tough task of keeping those numbers contained.