Humbled Deebo Samuel is on a mission to overwrite his 'awful' 2022 campaign

San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel (19)
San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel (19) / Michael Zagaris/GettyImages

Deebo Samuel opened up about his efforts with the 49ers in 2022, and putting it bluntly, he was embarrassed about the performance.

It was going to be exceptionally difficult for San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel to back up his 2021 All-Pro campaign again in 2022.

Granted, netting 1,770 all-purpose yards in a newly coined "wide back" role would be nearly impossible to repeat, especially with Samuel no longer flying under the radar across NFL circles.

That said, Samuel didn't exactly put himself in a position to back up his 2021 campaign either.

The critic who thought that way?

Samuel himself.

Deebo Samuel rips himself for 'awful' 2022 season with 49ers, vows to not put play like that 'back on tape again'

Statistically, Samuel was almost destined to have a regressive 2022. But it would have been reasonable to assume he would contribute in a major way over the course of the year even if the numbers were less.

In total, Samuel finished the year with 56 receptions for 632 receiving yards and two touchdowns while also adding another 232 rush yards and three touchdowns on the ground over the course of 13 games played.

Those numbers would be solid for a No. 3 receiver on a dynamic offense and perhaps even acceptable for a No. 2 option on many teams.

Not for Samuel, though, who felt his 2022 efforts were terrible.

"Oh, it was awful," Samuel said on the first day of mandatory minicamp, via 49ers Webzone. "Every aspect."

"Me and Kyle [Shanahan]had a long meeting the other day," Samuel added. "We watched tape, we talked about it, we put it behind us and just going through the tape and just look how sluggish and how bad it looked on tape, like I said, just reflecting on last offseason, it kind of played a big role in that. I'll never put nothing like that back on tape again."

Samuel notably looked heavier and not quite in as good a shape entering 2022 as he was heading into 2021.

The hamstring injury suffered in October of last year forced him to miss one game, and it's possible that was related, although his subsequent ankle and knee injuries could have been vastly worse.

Had he not suffered what was thought to be a serious season-ending injury at the time, Samuel's numbers would have certainly been more impressive.

Deebo Samuel admits contract dispute with 49ers was a distraction last offseason

It seems like a distant memory now, but fans may recall how bad things appeared to get between the All-Pro receiver and the Niners.

Samuel wanted a trade and only reluctantly backed down from it right around the time San Francisco finally granted him a lucrative contract extension.

From minicamp, the receiver openly admitted the trade request and contractual disputes got in the way of him preparing for the upcoming year in the manner he otherwise would have liked.

"I was kind of behind a ball a little bit as far as being in my routine that I'll normally be in for the offseason, getting ready to play because like I said, a lot of distractions were going on," Samuel proclaimed.

Rewarded with that big contract, though, Samuel now has to look at the phase where he lives up to the kind of money the 49ers are now paying him.

And doing so will involve not playing like he did a season ago, at least according to Samuel himself.

Read more from Niner Noise