Alternatively, titled "Why the 49ers will not be using a 1st round pick on a WR this year."
Deebo is a fantastic player, but many believe the 49ers need to draft a #1 WR to pair with him. The 49ers already have a #1 WR on their roster. They have a Brandon Marshall clone.
It's putting a lot on any player to compare them to any established NFL player, let alone arguably one in the class of best WRs. Brandon Marshall was a six-time pro bowl player, holds the NFL record for 21 receptions in a game, is one of only 6 NFL players to have three consecutive seasons with 100 catches, and retired with 970 receptions, for 12,351 yards and 83 TDs.
He was drafted in 2006 by the Denver Broncos, who were coached by none other than Coach Mike Shanahan. He was drafted in the 4th round with the 119th pick.
Look below at the comparison of Brandon Marshall to the player the 49ers already have (PlayerX) and note how similar they are:
Height: Marshall 6'5", PlayerX 6'4.75"
Weight: Marshall 229lbs, PlayerX 226lbs
Arm Length: Marshall 32.6, PlayerX 32
Hand Size: Marshall 8.9, PlayerX 10.25
(destroys the argument that hand size matters)
10 Yd Split: Marshall 1.64, PlayerX 1.63
40 Yd Dash: Marshall 4.52, PlayerX 4.66
Vertical Jump: Marshall 37, PlayerX 35.5
Broad Jump: Marshall 120, PlayerX 124
3-Cone: Marshall 6.96, PlayerX Unknown
Shuttle: Marshall 4.31, PlayerX 4.18
The player profiles are nearly identical. PlayerX is the 49ers 2019 early 3rd round pick, Jalen Hurd, who was taken with the 67th overall pick. Hurd appears to be slow-footed compared to Marshall's 40 yard dash time, but recall Hurd was coming off an injury when he ran that time at his pro day. He was not healthy enough to run at the combine. Hurd says he has run in the 4.4s.
I want to believe the 49ers saw the kind of player that Brandon Marshall was in making this pick. Many people have speculated Hurd is playing as a big slot, or RB/WR gadget, or even RB/WR/TE gadget. I think he can be much more. He can be the 49ers #1 WR.
To continue the Brandon Marshall comparison, his senior year stats at UCF were 13 games, 74 receptions, 1195 yards (16.1 avg), 11 TDs. Jalen Hurd's stats at Baylor were 12 games, 69 receptions (13.7 avg), 4 TDs. Hurd also had another 209 yards rushing and three rushing TDs for good measure. Again, pretty similar senior year college stats.
Unfortunately, Hurd injured his back in the pre-season and was not able to play last year. His back has been slow to heal. He could not even fly to Miami with the team for the SB. I heard rumors he may not play again. I hope that rumor is false and will be disappointed if I never get to see Jalen Hurd play the regular season for the red and gold. He is the most interesting prospect on the 49ers and the one I am most eager to see in action. We got a very brief glimpse of his potential when he had two touchdowns in the preseason game that he got injured in last fall.
How great will last year's draft be if he's as good as he can be along with Bosa, Deebo, and Greenlaw... and a Kicker!
Hurd only played a single season at WR after transferring to Baylor from Tennessee, where he was a RB. He was a good enough RB that he would have been drafted early at that position as well. Hurd was good enough to keep Saints star RB, Alvin Kamara, on the bench behind him. At nearly 6'5" though, Hurd was smart enough to understand he'd grown out of a RB body as well as calculating enough to know that RB careers are short at the professional level. Tennessee wouldn't move him to WR, and he wisely transferred to Baylor and switched to WR and was immediately successful. Shanahan said he could have been drafted as a TE too. He's an athletic freak.
Before college, he was Tennessee's high school athlete of the year. I think he can be such an exciting player. I can't wait to see him play. Some may be disappointed that the 49ers let super freak DK Metcalf (who doesn't fit the 49ers scheme) go the Seahawks. DK went at pick number 64, 3 picks before the 49ers took Hurd. If Hurd is healthy, he'll have a better career than Metcalf. How's that for a bold hawt take?
If Jalen Hurd is healthy, the 49ers will not use a 1st round pick to draft a WR. They already know he can play at the NFL level.