49ers

Lynch: TE McDonald to return to 49ers after being on trade block

Lynch: TE McDonald to return to 49ers after being on trade block

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers explored trade options for veteran tight end Vance McDonald during the three-day draft, but he is scheduled be back with the team when the club reports Monday for the fourth week of the offseason program.

“I think that’s the reality of new regimes coming, new schemes,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said Saturday at the conclusion the seven-round draft. “That’s not to say that he can’t fit into our scheme. Frankly, we received some interest from some other people, then we did explore some options throughout the league with Vance. Nothing ended up happening, so Vance will come back and have an opportunity to compete.”

Coach Kyle Shanahan said he called McDonald on Friday night to keep him updated on the team’s though process in pursuing trade options. McDonald was at his brother’s wedding, Shanahan said, so he left him a long voice message. McDonald responded Saturday morning with a text. Shanahan said the two men will speak on Monday in Santa Clara.

“We did take over a 2-14 team,” Shanahan said. “We don’t feel all the answers are here right now. We have a lot of work to do. We need to improve in any way possible. And we’re going to do that. We’re going to do that from an organizational standpoint. How can we improve the building? How can we improve the coaching staff? How can we improve the personnel department? How can we improve the players?

“Just from Vance’s text back, I think people understand that. I think it does make sense. I don’t think that’s something personal.”

Former 49ers general manager Trent Baalke signed off on a five-year contract extension for McDonald in December that consisted of a $7 million signing bonus. McDonald appeared in 11 games last season, catching 24 passes for 391 yards and four touchdowns. The 49ers acquired McDonald as a second-round draft pick 2013. In 48 career games, McDonald has 64 receptions for 866 yards and seven touchdowns.

The 49ers signed veteran tight end Logan Paulsen in the offseason. On Saturday, the 49ers selected Iowa tight end George Kittle in the fifth round of the draft. Kittle joins fellow tight ends McDonald, Garrett Celek, Paulsen, Blake Bell and Je’Ron Hamm on the 49ers’ 90-man roster.

 

 

NFL Draft 2020: Laviska Shenault compares self to 49ers' Deebo Samuel

NFL Draft 2020: Laviska Shenault compares self to 49ers' Deebo Samuel

INDIANAPOLIS -- Laviska Shenault Jr. is near the top of what is widely viewed as a deep and talented pool of wide receivers in this year’s NFL draft.

The 49ers are certain to like what they see the versatile Colorado wide receiver, and Shenault definitely is intrigued by the possibilities he sees with being a member of the 49ers. But they are unlikely to ever get a chance to select Shenault.

There will be some changes at the 49ers' wide receiver group, but the 49ers own the No. 31 overall pick and have just one selection within the first four rounds.

When asked at the NFL Scouting Combine which pro offenses he most admires, Shenault immediately identified the 49ers.

“I think there's a couple of teams, but I'd say most definitely the 49ers because with Deebo Samuel, they moved him around everywhere and just created mismatches and tried to get him the ball in different positions,” Shenault said.

Shenault is similar to Samuel with his size, strength and versatility. Samuel is 5-foot-11, 214 pounds. Shenault measured at 6-foot-and-5/8, 227 pounds. Like Samuel, Shenault turns into a running back with the ball in his hands.

In his three-season, 27-game college career, Shenault caught 149 passes for 1,943 yards and 10 touchdowns, while rushing 42 times for 280 yards and seven touchdowns.

Shenault said he liked to watch how the 49ers lined up Samuel in a lot of different spots. And Samuel was his answer when asked to which NFL wide receiver he is most similar.

“Deebo Samuel definitely did a lot of moving around and just getting the ball in different places,” Shenault said.

[RELATED: 49ers should watch these receivers during the combine

The 49ers selected Samuel in the second round with the No. 36 overall selection a year ago. Samuel caught 57 passes for 802 yards and three touchdowns as a rookie. He also carried 14 times for 159 yards and three touchdowns. Samuel set a Super Bowl record for receivers with three carries for 53 yards.

That’s how Shenault believes he can make an immediate impact in the NFL.

“I think my versatility is a good thing,” Shenault said. “I don't want to be in one spot. Then, I wouldn't get that many balls or attempts. I want to be able to move everywhere. I want to be able to create mismatches everywhere on the field.”

Kyle Shanahan's Super Bowl loss with 49ers lingers more than Falcons'

shanahanconfettisadusatsi.jpg
USATSI

Kyle Shanahan's Super Bowl loss with 49ers lingers more than Falcons'

INDIANAPOLIS -- Kyle Shanahan answered countless questions about losing to the New England Patriots with the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI during the week leading up to Super Bowl LIV.

The 49ers coach lost again after all the questions, this time to the Kansas City Chiefs. He's grieving all over again and having a more difficult time reconciling this time around. 

“I think this one was harder than the last one,” Shanahan said Tuesday from the NFL Scouting Combine. “The last one was a bigger loss, I mean at the end and stuff. I just thought we were a better team. The hardest thing for me is I thought we were the best team in the NFL.

“And when you really believe that, and I thought it for a while, it wasn’t just like the last couple weeks of the year. In Atlanta, we kind of got hot at the end of the year, so I felt pretty fortunate.”

Shanahan's 2016 Falcons and his 2019 49ers entered the playoffs with a first-round bye.  The difference is that the 49ers started the 2019 season with an 8-0 run, and finished with a 13-3 regular-season record, clinching the No. 1 seed.

The 2016 Falcons, however, had a 5-3 record at the halfway point. Atlanta won its last four straight games to clinch the No. 2 seed, but played two playoff home games only because the top-seeded Dallas Cowboys lost in the divisional round to the Green Bay Packers. 

[RELATED: 49ers want to bring everyone back, but know it will be tough]

The 49ers have come a long way under Shanahan. They had a fourth-quarter lead in the Super Bowl after winning the 10 games the previous two seasons, but it's difficult to focus on the journey following a painful ending. 

“This year I thought we had it,” Shanahan said. “We were the second-worst team in the league last year, and now we got to live with being the second-best, which I’m proud of. But that is harder, because I truly believe it was there for us.”