Early 49ers roster-bubble predictions after 2022 NFL Draft

General view of San Francisco 49ers helmets (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)
General view of San Francisco 49ers helmets (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images) /
8 of 10
Danny Gray, SMU Mustangs
Southern Methodist Mustangs wide receiver Danny Gray (5) Mandatory Credit: Brett Rojo-USA TODAY Sports /

49ers Wide Receivers

Lock: Brandon Aiyuk, Jauan Jennings, Ray-Ray McCloud, Deebo Samuel

Strong Bubble: Marcus Johnson, Malik Turner, Danny Gray*

Weak Bubble: KeeSean Johnson, Austin Mack

Long Shot: Connor Wedington, Taysir Mack*, Tay Martin*

Not unlike the offensive and defensive lines, there’s going to be some intriguing competition for one of arguably two spots at wide receiver this season.

Ray-Ray McCloud, as noted earlier, was brought in to spark what’s otherwise been a lackluster return game, and his notable free-agent contract keeps him safe. And, judging by the look of things, the 49ers’ tenuous relationship with All-Pro wideout Deebo Samuel appears to be on the mend.

Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk and Jauan Jennings all offer different elements to head coach Kyle Shanahan’s offense, while the Niners’ third-round rookie, Danny Gray, finally adds that vertical speed-threat dimension Shanahan has been lacking.

Meshed with quarterback Trey Lance’s strong arm, perhaps this is the most complete we’ve seen San Francisco’s wide receiver room since Shanahan took over in 2017.

That’ll leave the remaining options in a relatively precarious situation, though, as both special teams wideouts Marcus Johnson and Malik Turner will have an easier path to the 53-man roster than UDFAs like Taysir Mack and Tay Martin, but the two veterans are anything but guaranteed roster spots.

Again, however, this is a good problem for the 49ers to have. Especially if Gray pans out.