SF 49ers Free-Agent Target No. 1: Wide Receiver Curtis Samuel
Height and size have never been top preferences for Kyle Shanahan’s wide receiver corps. While they’re nice features to have, Shanahan has long since been about versatility, speed, route-running abilities and separation.
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As far as speed and versatility are concerned, wide receiver Curtis Samuel has those. Remember, he ran a 4.31 40-yard time back at his 2017 NFL Combine workouts, which certainly caught the attention of the Carolina Panthers before drafting him. And despite numerous changes in Carolina with both quarterbacks and coaches, Samuel has remained a serviceable weapon.
What makes Samuel stand out is his ability to do plenty of things on offense.
The Panthers didn’t hesitate to line the 5-foot-11, 195-pound Samuel up in the slot or on the outside. And he was equally adept at operating as a rusher, too, both on inside runs and jet sweeps, the likes of which have often been featured in Shanahan’s offense.
Case in point, Samuel had 200 rush yards for Carolina last season, bringing his all-purpose yards total up to 1,051 despite the Panthers’ own offensive challenges.
Turning 25 years old before the 2021 regular season begins, the four-year veteran still has plenty of upside to his game and could be quite the gadget weapon to help the SF 49ers offense become more explosive than it already might be with the current players on the roster.