clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

PFF lists WR Jauan Jennings as one of the biggest steals in the draft

Is Shanahan bringing the “big slot” back?

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Reese’s Senior Bowl Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

Pro Football Focus listed their steals of the NFL Draft, and one of the names was the seventh-round pick from the San Francisco 49ers, wide receiver Jauan Jennings, who fell in the draft due to a slow 40 time. Jennings was 70th on PFF’s big board and even went in the first round during a few of their mocks this draft season. PFF has been high on Jennings all year, so it’s no surprise they think the former Volunteer wideout can make an impact:


PFF Big Board rank: 70

What Jauan Jennings does in an open field is a sight to see and makes us wonder how he fell this far into the draft, but Kyle Shanahan surely isn’t mad he did. He lacks straight-line speed but was incredibly difficult to bring down at 6-foot-3, 215 pounds. This past year, Jennings broke 30 tackles on just 59 catches. Jennings’ suddenness at his size is remarkable, too. He’ll fit in quite nicely in Shanahan’s offense.

Here is what Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch had to say about their seventh-round selection:

KS: “Jennings was a guy that we knew he’d be right there at the end. He didn’t have the best combine grade outs. When you do that, sometimes you’re always guessing, is it going to be anywhere from the fifth round to a free agent? When you watch this tape, you know a lot of people in this League are going to love him. He was one of our most favorite guys to watch. He’s a bulldog. He usually plays in the slot. I feel like he could probably play linebacker if he wants. He’s willing to fight everybody out there. He fights for yards. He makes plays, and there’s a mindset to that guy that you don’t have to talk to him to hear about. You can watch it on the silent tape, and you know what type of football player he is. When you have guys like that, they usually end up being pretty special. Now, he has some reasons why we got him here and where we did. That’s why he’s going to have to come in and prove himself to make this team because we’ve got a good group of receivers. With the way he plays, the attitude he plays without there with the physicality, he’s going to get himself a chance to make this team. I know he’s going to push these other guys pretty hard.”

JL: “He’d play safety if he didn’t play receiver. I love his attitude. I love his style. I think he’s going to help us a lot. As for Jalen Hurd, he’s doing really well. One of the benefits is that the rehab players have been able to be around the facility. They’ve been granted permission by the League. We take great precaution with all those things, but Jalen is doing really well. He is cleared. We’re ramping him up. We are very optimistic. I don’t want to be overly optimistic because last year we saw some progress and then we had some setbacks. So, I’ll let that thing continue to take its place. He’s out; he’s running. He’s doing really well, and we’re excited by that. Jalen’s 14 days that we’ve seen him were lights out. The problem is we’ve only seen him for 14 days. Jalen knows full well that he needs to work his tail off so that he can get back and be a contributor and try to earn opportunities to be a contributor for our team moving forward. We love his skill set. We love his mindset. Now it’s time to put it all to work.”

Watching Jennings against Georgia gives you a good idea of what his usage will be if he does make the roster:

Screens and quick throws so Jennings can break tackles, but down the field routes where Jennings can use his size to shield off defenders. I’m excited to see him play. There may not be an impact in 2020, but Jennings has a role in this league, and we could see him have an impact in 2021.