Death, taxes and Frank Gore

TAMPA - Death, taxes and 1,000 rushing yards for Frank Gore. The 49ers' running back surpassed that plateau for the third consecutive season and the seventh time in his career Sunday as he took big gouges out of the Tampa defense early and late and finished with 86 yards.

The only seasons that Gore, 30, failed to reach the 1,000-yard mark were during his rookie year when he was the backup to Kevan Barlow and in 2010 when he suffered a broken hip in Week 12.

"Once again, I feel like he is one of the most underrated running backs in the NFL," quarterback Colin Kaepernick said. "He does everything for our offense. He runs the ball. If we ask him to block, he does it. If we ask him to catch a pass, he does it. What he mans to this team and what he contributes really can't be quantified."

Gore entered Sunday's game nursing an ankle injury and needing 69 yards to reach 1,000 yards for the season. He seemed to tweak the injury late in the game but remained on the field. He had 33 yards on the team's game-clinching, 17-play drive in the fourth quarter.

"It's all timing for us, perfect timing," Gore said after the game. "Everybody is getting healthy, and like I said, the fourth quarter, that's when you want to be good. ... We're showing people that we're taking steps."

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