No. 2 49ers Target for Jimmy Garoppolo: Trent Taylor
It’s a good thing Trent Taylor is coming back at a time when San Francisco is relatively shorthanded at wide receiver. A year ago, before Taylor was hurt, there was plenty of speculation he could have led the Niners in total receptions serving as Jimmy Garoppolo’s favorite target. It’s likely the two’s relationship from 2017 fueled these predictions.
Yet there is one common trait both Taylor and Garoppolo share, putting the former on this list: ability to thrive on third downs.
In 2017, Taylor recorded 19 third-down receptions for a first down, which placed him ninth that season among all pass catchers as well as being tied for first among rookies. Last year, Garoppolo completed 50 percent of his third-down attempts for a first down, and this ranked best in the NFL among qualifiers.
Now, combine those two separate attributes into one passer-receiver tandem.
Remember, Taylor was a receiving machine his final year at Louisiana Tech back in 2016, recording a whopping 136 catches and leading all of college football that year with 1,803 receiving yards.
Those numbers won’t replicate at the pro level in 2020, yet one shouldn’t be overly shocked if Taylor winds up being one of the 49ers’ leading wideouts this season if he stays healthy.