The San Francisco 49ers wrapped up the 2018 season and they have begun their work to prepare for 2019 free agency and the NFL draft. The coaches and scouts are back from a week in Mobile, Alabama at the Senior Bowl, but there is plenty more to be done as they get ready to build on a disappointing 2018 campaign. We’ll be breaking down plenty of what that means, but in the meantime, we wanted to take a look back at the season that was for the 49ers.
Jimmy Garoppolo’s injury sent things south, but there is plenty still to assess. We are going to take a look at every notable addition and provide a forum for grading how that signing, trade, or draft pick worked out.
Dante Pettis, wide receiver
How acquired: Drafted in the second round (44th overall)
The 49ers needed to add some playmakers this past year, and they made an aggressive move in the 2018 NFL Draft to add Pettis. The team traded a third round pick and received a fifth round pick from Washington to move up from No. 59 to No. 44. Non-first round trades can fly under the radar, but it was still an indication the 49ers were high on the Washington receiver and returner.
By the end of the season, it’s easy to be excited about Pettis, but there will be some questions heading into 2019. He’s a guy who proved incredibly productive for a stretch, but injuries were a problem, costing him four games.
Pettis had a big opener with two receptions for 61 yards and a touchdown. He had a 35-yard reception in Week 2, and then fell silent before a knee injury cost him Weeks 5-7. He returned in Week 8 and was relatively quiet heading into the 49ers Week 11 bye. He had four receptions for a mere 12 yards the week before the 49ers bye, and maybe that was what got him going after the bye.
In Week 12, Pettis began a four-game stretch in which he had 17 receptions for 338 yards and four touchdowns. He would injure his knee again in Week 16 and miss Week 17, but we saw how much of a force he could be.
Could he be in position for a George Kittle-type breakout next season? Kittle dealt with various injuries in 2017, but was mostly healthy and able to break out in a big way in 2018. I wouldn’t expect franchise-record numbers from Pettis, but he and Kendrick Bourne could be in a position to force a change in how this depth chart might look. The injuries prevented a huge breakout rookie season, but that four-week stretch from Week 12-15 has me excited about the future. Whether it plays out the way we would like is another question entirely.
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How do you grade the Dante Pettis draft pick?
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