Sure, Georgia wide receiver Riley Ridley’s collegiate numbers don’t exactly jump off the paper. But it’s important to note the Bulldogs offense is far more run heavy, thereby limiting the chances the 6-foot-1, 199-pound Ridley received over his three years in college:
This isn’t unlike the case with New Orleans Saints No. 1 wide receiver Michael Thomas, whose pro-level production wasn’t at all reflected by his collegiate numbers.
Ridley could be on the same trajectory.
While Ridley’s 4.58 40-yard dash time at the NFL Scouting Combine wasn’t particularly impressive, Ridley wins over a player like Kelvin Harmon with much better route-running abilities — arguably more important to Kyle Shanahan than just straight-line speed.
Plus, according to the Sacramento Bee’s Chris Biderman, the Niners met with Ridley at the combine, therefore showing at least some moderate interest to start.
Ridley is looking to be a late second-round prospect, currently. But if he ends up falling into Round 3, and the 49ers haven’t grabbed a wide receiver yet, don’t be shocked if he winds up being San Francisco’s third overall selection this April.