Everyone thought Frank Gore was the best running back at Miami (Fla.). But knee injuries kept him from realizing his potential, while paving the way for Edgerrin James and Willis McGahee to become stars with the Hurricanes and then first-round NFL draft picks. The 49ers snatched up Gore in the second round of the 2005 draft and made him their starting running back last season, when he rushed for a club-record 1,695 yards and earned a trip to the Pro Bowl.
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Raiders rookie Kevin Boothe
According to ESPN.com, the Niners moved quickly to lock up their star running back, signing a four-year extension through 2011 that could pay him $28.012 million in the next five years. Gore is guaranteed $14 million, including a signing bonus of $6.5 million.
In depth report: Gore to get hefty contract extension with 49ers
Bonus for Boothe
Kevin Boothe was one of the few bright spots for the Raiders last season. The rookie stepped in as injuries and ineffectiveness plagued the offensive line. As a reward, the sixth-round draft pick out of Cornell received $275,000 in performance-based pay, the second-most in the NFL. A new formula rewards players based on their base salary compared with playing time.