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Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Mohamed Sanu discusses role with 49ers, what went wrong with Patriots, reuniting with Kyle Shanahan

Sep 24, 2020 at 12:55 PM--

New San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Mohamed Sanu could be seen on Sunday's telecast offering up some advice to Kendrick Bourne. The two had already built a relationship with each other on Instagram, and last week became teammates when Sanu signed a one-year deal with the team.

"I love [Bourne's] game, how he is kind of similar (to myself), in a sense," Sanu told reporters on Thursday. "We just always would communicate through Instagram or text. We just happen to be on the same team now. ... It's been cool to be around him every day. He's a big ball of energy, a great personality, great athlete, better person. It's fun to be around him."

Sanu didn't join the 49ers just to be a veteran mentor, though. He signed with the team to contribute on a championship roster. The receiver feels he can lead by example and take on a leadership role for the younger players.

"I just want to help out any way I can, for real," Sanu explained. "We have a lot of talented young guys that just need some leadership. I feel like I can help in any way possible, whether it's making plays or showing them how to make plays in critical situations because a lot of those guys are going to play and make key plays for our team.

"I just want to make sure they understand how to do it in certain situations or how to put their body where it makes it easy or more efficient for them."

Sanu spent half of last season with the Patriots after a trade sent him from the Atlanta Falcons to New England. The Patriots surprisingly released the veteran receiver on September 3.

"I feel like it just wasn't a good fit," Sanu said of his time in New England. "Things happen the way they happen, and I'm not really looking to the past. I'm just focused on what I've got here in San Fran. I'm excited just to be a part of this team.

"This culture is just more my style. So, I'm excited for it. I'm just taking full advantage. I'm grateful for my time in New England. It taught me a lot. It just didn't gel out how I wanted."

Sanu is reunited with his former offensive coordinator in Atlanta — Kyle Shanahan. The two remained in contact after Shanahan left to become the 49ers' head coach.

"We would talk every now and then," Sanu said. "Seeing him now as a head coach is different than seeing him as a coordinator. He runs things the way he wants to, and they're smooth and efficient. I like it. I definitely like it. I'm glad to be a part of it. He has everything running smoothly. It's pretty cool."

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