Coming off the team’s second Super Bowl appearance in the past ten years, the San Francisco 49ers are primed for another deep playoff run. That is if the season is played. Welcome to the San Francisco 49ers training camp preview.
3 position battles to watch:
Wide Receiver 1: Kendrick Bourne, Brandon Aiyuk
With Deebo Samuel expected to miss at least the first quarter of the season due to a Jones fracture in his right foot, QB Jimmy Garoppolo needs someone else to step up and become his go-to target.
Right Guard: Tom Compton, Daniel Brunskill
Despite signing a three-year, $9 million extension with the 49ers in March 2019, Mike Person was released a little more than a year later. Person had a rough go of it in Super Bowl 54 and was partially responsible for the team’s loss. Just goes to show how badly the 49ers need a solid starting right guard.
Tight End 2: Jordan Reed, Ross Dwelley, Daniel Helm
George Kittle is number one, and everyone knows that. But with the team’s recent signing of Jordan Reed, is he the clear favorite? It certainly looks like it’s his job to lose, but training camp Is a time when underdogs shine and steal spots.
Ready to Breakout: Solomon Thomas
Having traded DeForest Bruckner to the Colts for a first-round draft pick now has a hole in their defensive frontline. Emerge former top-three pick, Solomon Thomas. With Thomas entering the fourth year of his rookie deal, the 49ers most likely will not be picking up the fifth-year option on his contract, giving him an even more significant incentive to breakout: playing for a big, new deal.
Rookie to Watch: Brandon Aiyuk
San Fran forked over picks No. 31, No. 117 and No. 176 to the Minnesota Vikings, so they could move up to No. 25 and select Aiyuk. With Samuels out for part of the season, Aiyuk, an all-around athlete who caught 98 passes for 1,666 yards and 11 touchdowns in two seasons at Arizona State, looks poised to make his mark early.
Fantasy Sleeper: Brandon Aiyuk
Aside from contending for the wide receiver one slot, and being a rookie to watch, if Aiyuk gets going early, he’s going to be a monster in fantasy. A possible late-round steal that friends scoff at, at first, but just wait for the season to pick up, and his stats to pile up. Then, you’ll be the one laughing.