Round 7, Pick No. 230 Overall: 49ers select wide receiver T.J. Vasher, Texas Tech
Rounds 6 and 7 are always great times to take some experimental fliers on developmental players who may not have bona fide roles right away but could develop into something worthwhile down the road.
In the case of Texas Tech wide receiver T.J. Vasher, a team like the 49ers could bank on his behemoth 6-foot-6, 203-pound frame as a massive mismatch weapon.
The Pewter Plank
Vasher turned into a reliable pass-catching option back in 2017 and turned in three consecutive years where he netted over 500 receiving yards, eventually totaling 1,983 yards with 21 touchdowns over his five-year collegiate career.
True, Vasher lacks the play speed and doesn’t necessarily have the strength suggested by his massive frame. Hence why he’s a late day-three pick. He ran a 4.50 40-yard time at his pro day. But looking at the game tape, that speed doesn’t necessarily show up with any sort of consistency. And there are going to be questions about his hands at the next level, too.
That said, the upsides Vasher brings are more than worth looking at. His size alone makes for an intriguing red-zone option where Kyle Shanahan’s offenses have traditionally struggled. And the Niners could be getting out of Vasher what they hoped they could get out of the 2019 third-round draftee, wide receiver Jalen Hurd, whose big-body build hasn’t seen the field in back-to-back years because of serious injuries.
Vasher would need some serious polish at the NFL level, particularly within an offense as complex as that of San Francisco.
But if he develops well enough, the 49ers could have themselves a serious mismatch weapon.
We’ll know for sure if the possibility opens when the 2021 draft kicks off on April 29.