49ers

Wes Welker outlines plans for 49ers rookies Deebo Samuel, Jalen Hurd

Wes Welker outlines plans for 49ers rookies Deebo Samuel, Jalen Hurd

Wes Welker has a plan for 49ers rookie wide receiver Deebo Samuel.

Welker has been out of the game as a player for three seasons. But after practices in his first offseason as 49ers wide receivers coach, Welker remains on the field to run with Samuel while he goes through essential extra conditioning.

Samuel, who checked in at 5-foot-11, 214 pounds at the NFL Scouting Combine, has the body of a running back. Welker wants him to have the body of a slot receiver.

“I think he’s a guy that he can play inside or outside,” Welker said on the 49ers Insider Podcast. “He’s definitely a bigger body, but he does have good quickness and speed and all those different things.

“Me and him, we keep on talking. If he does want to play in the slot, he’s going to have to lose a few pounds, so that’s something we’re working on now, and he’s working hard to do it. We’re going to keep on harping on him to do that. He’s had a great attitude about just going to keep working on it.”

Welker said Samuel must drop some pounds to enable him to better maneuver his body, change direction and exhibit more short-area quickness from the slot position.

“I love his size and I love his physicality and everything, but we’re still going to want to be able to use him on some of those plays were you really want him to get in and out of those breaks,” Welker said. “The lighter you are when you’re doing that, the better off you’re going to be.”

The 49ers invested two of their top three draft picks in players for Welker to groom. After selecting Samuel of South Carolina with the No. 36 overall pick, the 49ers came back in the third round to choose Baylor wide receiver Jalen Hurd.

Hurd (6-5, 226) played just one college season at wide receiver after playing his first three seasons at Tennessee as a running back, where he was just 440 yards short of becoming the school’s all-time leading rusher. Hurd opted to transfer after the Tennessee coaching staff declined his request to move from running back to wide receiver.

Hurd has not played wide receiver long enough to develop bad habits, but he is severely lacking in experience. He has sat out the team’s offseason program as he recovers from knee surgery in December.

[RELATED: Wes Welker envisions many 49ers receivers fitting in the slot]

“He’s been a little banged up this spring, so it’s been about the mental part for him,” Welker said of Hurd. “He’s missing out on a lot of reps out there right now, and he’s just got to get his body right and then, on top of that, just staying on top of the playbook because he’s not getting all those reps.

“With his size and athleticism of being able to play running back, being able to play wide receiver, being able to do a lot of different things, that’s a great matchup for us. Losing these reps and the different things we want to do with him kind of sets him back. So he’s got a lot of making up to and a lot of work ahead of him to get caught up.”

Why Kyle Shanahan had to abort rep with Jimmy Garoppolo at 49ers minicamp

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AP

Why Kyle Shanahan had to abort rep with Jimmy Garoppolo at 49ers minicamp

Jimmy Garoppolo was moving along in his rehab from the torn ACL he suffered in Week 3 of the 2018 season.

So, toward the end of minicamp, head coach Kyle Shanahan wanted to get his quarterback a rep or two in 11-on-11s. Shanahan's instructions to his defensive line were to stand still with their hands up and to not touch the franchise quarterback.

Shanahan's orders were heard, but the instincts of his defense took over and the head coach had to jump in to avoid catastrophe. 

"The animals that they are, why we love them, they couldn't help it," Shanahan told ESPN about his defensive line during the drill. "I saw it, so I stopped it. I wasn't going to mess with it."

After the minor heart attack, Shanahan was able to laugh it off. 

"I liked it, after I got over it," Shanahan said.

Exhale, Niners fans.

[RELATED: These three players are most important to 49ers' success in 2019]

Garoppolo has proclaimed himself "good to go" as training camp approaches, but hopefully, the 49ers' defensive line gets the memo during the next drill.

Robbie Gould excited 49ers 'stepped up big time' to bring him back

Robbie Gould excited 49ers 'stepped up big time' to bring him back

It seemed to be the perfect opportunity. After missing a critical kick that kept the Chicago Bears from advancing in last season's playoffs, fans were clamoring for an improved kicker. 49ers K Robbie Gould ascended to the top of the league at the position during his 11 seasons with the Bears, as he currently sits second in NFL history in field-goal percentage behind current Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker.

Gould was unhappy with the San Francisco 49ers after being franchise-tagged this offseason, and with his family still living in the Windy City, the stars appeared to be aligning for the NFC North Champions. 

Gould was the most recent guest of the Adam Schefter Podcast and spoke about what was a stressful offseason for the 36-year-old.

"It's a tough situation for sure, you know Chicago's home for me. I have a permanent house here in Chicago, it will always be home," said Gould. "I love the (Chicago Bears) organization. I played here for 11 years, I'm the all-time leading scorer."

The financial terms of Gould's deal with the 49ers were not disclosed, but sources say it is a fully guaranteed two-year, $10.5 million deal with an option that could make it a four-year, $18 million contract, $15 million of which would be guaranteed.

"Who knows what would have happened if something didn't get done, but the 49ers stepped up big-time to get this done," Gould said. 

Entering his fifteenth season, Gould also spoke about how his priorities affected his decision-making process.

"The big thing for me is that I wanted to be close to my family, and in the beginning in the entire conversation with the 49ers they knew it would have to take at least two years to fully guaranteed in a contract to get me to come back and they were able to make that happen," he said.

Gould's agent had requested a trade in April, but 49ers general manager John Lynch was determined to keep one of the league's best in San Francisco and the two sides were able to work out a deal just before Monday's deadline for extensions for players with the franchise tag.

RELATED: Madden 20 ratings: 49ers have three of top seven fastest running backs]

As the 2019 season gets closer and closer, Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan can rest easy knowing that another position on the depth chart is solidified going into training camp.