49ers want to use Deebo more but will be 'smart' with him


No matter what is asked of him, Deebo Samuel is just excited to be back on the field with his teammates. 

The plan was to get Samuel 20-30 snaps in the 49ers' 25-20 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night and wide receivers coach Wes Welker dialed up 25 plays for the sophomore wide receiver.

Coach Kyle Shanahan wants to give Samuel more opportunities going forward but the plan is still to be cautious. 

“Yeah, obviously we want to get him out there more, but with a guy who hurt his foot back in the summer and hadn't been out there running enough, had to wait for a long time to do that,” Shanahan said Wednesday. 

“Then we had to shut him down for a little bit a few weeks ago and it just wasn't smart to put him out there a ton, but he looks so great in practice. I mean he looked a hundred percent.”

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Shanahan was impressed with Samuel’s preparation and performance against the Eagles after only having been at practice since last Wednesday. The wideout caught all three of his targets for 35 yards and ran a jet sweep for 10 yards. 

Samuel will follow the plan of his head coach but is excited to get more opportunities to play with Brandon Aiyuk added to the mix. Not only was the second-year 49er impressed by the rookie’s hurdling touchdown, he knows what kind of problem they can be for opposing defenses. 


“I think it’s more space for all of us because now you have to cover the whole field with me, [George] Kittle and Brandon to make tackles,” Samuel said. “You don’t know who is getting the end around, who’s getting the screen. It puts stress on defense coordinators on how they are going to game plan for us.” 

Samuel reported that his foot was a little sore after the game but nothing that was unexpected. He knew heading into the week that the movement from practice and playing in a game would be much different than cardio work he was doing rehabbing from the Jones fracture he suffered during the summer. 

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“We would love to him give more, but we’ve got to be smart with that and see how this week goes with him, but he did a good job,” Shanahan said. “He was ready to go. He made all his assignments and when he got the opportunity, he broke tackles and made some plays, too.”

The 49ers will see how Samuel's foot reacts to more work throughout the week of practice as they put together a plan for Sunday's matchup with the Miami Dolphins.