2. Joe Williams
Shanahan is a fan of rookie running back Joe Williams.
Shanahan reportedly talked Lynch into adding Williams to the 49ers draft board before the beginning of the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. As Shanahan told Sports Illustrated’s Peter King prior to the round:
"“I’m telling you right now: If we don’t get him, I’ll be sick. I will be contemplating Joe Williams all night.” -Kyle Shanahan"
After the fourth round began, the 49ers moved up 22 spots, and Shanahan got his man.
In 2016, Shanahan’s number two running back Tevin Coleman had 29 red-zone touches for eight touchdowns. For comparison, Shanahan’s top red-zone wide receiver had ten touches for four scores.
If Williams wins the role, he will be prominently featured in the red zone — primarily in the running game, but also in the passing game:
Williams will be given the opportunity to display his speed and cutting ability on a variety of red-zone passes: