Washington wide receiver Dante Pettis, who set the NCAA record for punt returns for touchdowns, is visiting the 49ers on Monday, a league source told NBC Sports Bay Area.
Pettis (6-foot, 186 pounds) is a well-rounded, accomplished receiver who also excelled in the return game. Pettis returned nine punts for touchdowns in his four-year career, including four as a senior. The previous record of eight was shared by Oklahoma’s Antonio Perkins (2001-04) and Texas Tech’s Wes Welker (2000-03).
In Pettis’ final two college seasons, he caught 116 passes for 1,583 yards and 22 touchdowns. He is considered a strong route-runner who has the versatility to line up outside or in the slot.
He did not participate in any drills at the NFL scouting combine or at Washington’s pro day due to an ankle injury. He did drills a week ago, and timed an unofficial 4.47 to 4.49 in the 40-yard dash, according to reports. He becomes at least the third wide receiver to make an official visit to Santa Clara to meet with the 49ers, joining Auden Tate (Florida State) and Byron Pringle (Kansas State).
Pettis’ father, Gary, played Major League Baseball for 11 seasons, mostly with the Angels. He was a five-time Gold Glover winner as a center fielder who ranked in the top-five in the league in stolen bases six times.
The 49ers have 184 players on their draft board.
It is a lower number of prospects than the 49ers have listed in the three seasons with John Lynch as general manager. Lynch said it speaks to the belief that it is going to be more difficult for a rookie to come in and win a roster spot this season.
[RELATED: 49ers strongly considering Williams at No. 2]
The 49ers have a scheduled six draft picks, a number that might change as the 49ers determine over the course of the three-day selection meeting whether to end up with fewer players due to trade-ups or attempt to move back to acquire more players.
If they stay where they’re scheduled to choose, the 49ers' draft could look something like this:
VIEW ENTIRE SEVEN-ROUND MOCK DRAFT HERE
The 49ers have announced that DeMarcus Cobb, son of the late Reggie Cobb, will announce the team’s second-round pick of the 2019 NFL Draft alongside San Francisco alum Earl Cooper.
General manager John Lynch opened up his pre-draft media availability with a heartfelt message about the longtime scout. He spoke about the effect that Cobb had, not only in the 49ers building, but around the league as well.
“The outpouring from the league has just been unbelievable,” Lynch said. “The scouts, the coaches, GMs. He touched the NFL community and I think far beyond that. We’re finding out more and more each minute with the correspondence we’re having with people.”
Lynch also hinted that DeMarcus would be involved in honoring his father with the team in some form. They will also keep his seat in the draft room empty the entire weekend.
Cobb was the western regional scout for the 49ers for the past 11 seasons after spending six years with the Buccaneers as an area scout. He had a seven-season career in the NFL that included one year as a teammate of Lynch in Tampa Bay.
Lynch elaborated on how Cobb’s work will influence how the 49ers draft evolves this week.
[RELATED: 49ers strongly considering Williams with No. 2 overall pick]
“Reggie’s imprint will be on this draft,” Lynch said. “He worked incredibly hard, as he always did in the preparation for it. I’d love nothing more than to be able to take a player that he scouted hard.
“We have enough cross checks and all that, that he’ll have his imprint on this draft in some form or fashion. Certainly, by the way, he just had a spirit about him that was something special.”