4 biggest questions 49ers have after 2021 OTAs
By Peter Panacy
No. 1: Who’s going to secure 49ers’ No. 3 wide receiver role?
San Francisco already has its top two wide receivers established for 2021: Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel.
But it remains a wide-open competition for the No. 3 spot on the depth chart.
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On the positive side of things, a number of players seemed to rise to the challenge and are now fully immersed as candidates to get the job. Mohamed Sanu, the crafty veteran who had a brief stint with the 49ers last year, was one positive standout. So was second-year pro Jauan Jennings, who spent his rookie season on the practice squad.
Judging by Kyle Shanahan’s post-OTA comments to the media, though, it remains an unanswered question. Or at least he’s keeping it that way:
"Richie [James] he’s been here for a lot and helped us a ton. And right before he got hurt or tweaked something, I thought he was having a hell of a camp. So I’m excited to see him come back. And some of the guys that people haven’t seen yet, with Jauan Jennings who was on our practice squad last year and a guy like Mohamed Sanu, who’s done a lot of things in his career, who he’s been having a hell of a camp, Travis [Benjamin] has been having a hell of a camp. Kevin White’s been doing great. We got, I know I’m missing people, but there’s not a guy on our roster at receiver that doesn’t have a chance to make this team."
Saying everything and nothing at the same time.
Right now, Jennings and Sanu appear to be the favorites to earn that role. But with no press coverage and minimal contact, it’ll be interesting to see if the depth chart shakes up between now and Week 1.
With the Niners not having a clear answer for this vital spot, it’s possible the third wide receiver battle could end up being one of the biggest stories during training camp later this summer.