Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin is seen as one of the foundational pieces of this San Francisco 49ers team as it heads into its second season under Kyle Shanahan. That wasn't always the case, though. Goodwin had a rough start in his first year with the team. A few crucial drops early on last season left the receiver frustrated.

"I felt like it was the end of the world because this fan base, they don't know me from Adam at this point," Goodwin told Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area on the 49ers Insider Podcast. "All they know is what I put on during camp, the few highlights that I had in Buffalo or what they can Google, and that's it. They don't know the extra work that I put in, how bad I wanted to catch the ball. A lot of people don't take that into consideration.

They feel like, 'You're supposed to make that play.' And I am because that's what I get paid to do but I also am human."

Like the 49ers team as a whole, Goodwin had a strong finish to the 2017 season. He ended up with 56 receptions for 962 yards and two touchdowns. The 49ers were so impressed with their young receiver that they rewarded him with a three-year contract extension in March.

It turns out, Goodwin received some words of encouragement last season from a 49ers and NFL legend.

"I've got to shout out to the G.O.A.T., Jerry Rice, for giving me words of encouragement throughout the season too," Goodwin said. "I think he had a similar story where he first came in and had a few drops and it was real challenging for him. But 20 years later in his career, he's the best to ever do it.

"So just to any 49er fan out there that's listening or paying attention to this podcast, I just encourage you just to hang tight with us 49ers. We're heading in the right direction. It will be some highs and lows, kind of like last year, but I promise you, if you do more encouraging, that can only help this organization and these guys. We've got a young team.

"You being on our side and helping us go against other teams will benefit us so much more than getting on our comments (on social media) and talking bad about us because we're human too."

Goodwin has become a fan-favorite. He was named the 2018 George Halas Award winner by the Professional Football Writers of America in June. The award is given to an NFL player, coach or staff member who overcomes the most adversity to succeed. The receiver was named the winner of the Len Eshmont Award. The prestigious award is presented annually to a 49ers player who best exemplified the inspirational and courageous play of Len Eshmont.

Goodwin was also the recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award, which is given to a player who exemplifies a commitment to sportsmanship and courage, and the Garry Niver Award, which is presented to a 49ers player by the San Francisco Chapter of the PFWA for his cooperation and professional style.

You can listen to the entire interview with Goodwin below.