49ers: 5 players hurt most by lack of OTAs, minicamps

Jerick McKinnon #28 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)
Jerick McKinnon #28 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images) /
6 of 6
Brandon Aiyuk, Arizona State Sun Devils, 49ers
Wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk #2 of the Arizona State Sun Devils (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

No. 1: 49ers Wide Receiver Brandon Aiyuk

One could make the argument rookies suffer the most from no offseason team workouts or activities. Just like Colton McKivitz and the rest of San Francisco’s 2020 rookie class, former Arizona State wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk isn’t alone in this regard.

It’s tough enough for a first-year player to adequately make the transition from the college ranks to the pros even under the best of circumstances.

More from Niner Noise

Now, tack on the oddness of the 2020 offseason.

But for Aiyuk, there’s going to be a lot of extra pressure. Going back to Kyle Shanahan’s offense, which requires intricate route-running and separation abilities, the physical nuances of such are only going to be experienced by practical reps on the field, not solely from online classroom sessions and film study.

This wasn’t lost on Pro Football Focus’ Michael Renner either, who listed Aiyuk at the bottom of his 10 rookie wideouts’ situations with their new squads:

"Aiyuk’s limited route tree at Arizona State could come into play, too, as the 49ers’ offense doesn’t feature a ton of simplistic routes. In fact, their receivers had the fewest yards (529) of any group on screens, hitches, go’s, and crossers last year."

There’s going to be a serious adjustment for Aiyuk in Shanahan’s offense, which will be far more complicated than anything the first-year receiver experienced before. The missed field time between his selection in Round 1 of the NFL Draft and training camp could prove to be a hindrance.

Next. 3 burning questions for 49ers wide receivers in 2020. dark

As a result, Aiyuk could end up taking a little more time to develop than initially hoped.