These first-year 49ers pros have already started turning heads for the right reasons over the first week of organized team activities.
Don’t read too much into the many practice reports you’ll see stemming from the San Francisco 49ers’ organized team activities.
They’re certainly not to be downplayed. After all, this two-week period marks the first time on the offseason calendar where (nearly) the entire team will come together to start jelling and building the necessary chemistry needed for the regular season.
But they’re also little more than glorified backyard football. No pads, no tackling, no physical contact. Many of the drills are mere 7-on-7 matchups where the offense can command all since there’s no press coverage or bumping a receiver or running back at the line of scrimmage.
One might look at all this and effectively conclude OTAs are relatively unimportant. To many a veteran, that might be the case.
However, for rookies, OTAs are extremely vital.
This is especially true for the Niners’ class of first-year pros, as the bulk of their 2022 NFL Draft class wasn’t intended to find clear-cut starters but rather aimed at providing ample depth and potential long-term contributors who’ll start in a year or two.
As such, winning those key position battles and climbing up the rung of the depth chart ahead of the much more impactful training camp will be primary goal No. 1 for each one of San Francisco’s nine draft picks and slew of undrafted free agents.
With one week of OTAs in the books, let’s take a look at which rookies seem to be standing out the most for the right reasons.