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Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Shanahan, 49ers have Brandon Aiyuk doing Deebo Samuel-type things

Sep 29, 2020 at 12:01 PM--

Deebo Samuel looked great out there on Sunday.

Oh, wait ... that wasn't Deebo.

That was rookie wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk doing Deebo-like things on the football field against the New York Giants. It looked very familiar, though, as broken down below by NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger.

Aiyuk finished the game with 101 all-purpose yards. The receiver hauled in five catches for 70 yards and carried the football three times for 31 yards and a score during his 56 snaps. It was enough to earn Aiyuk a Pepsi Zero Sugar NFL Rookie of the Week Award nomination.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan was asked on Monday about Aiyuk's versatility, ability to run the ball like Samuel, and if that factored into the team's decision to draft the receiver.

"You don't take guys just to hand the ball off to them," Shanahan said. "The same thing with Deebo. But when they are physical runners, when they have the speed to do it, and they compete while doing it, it's always a good bonus.

"Deebo's someone who is as good as I've been around at doing that last year. Aiyuk showed that a lot in his college tape, whether it was just catching the ball and running after the catch or getting some handoffs. He's been really good in practice with us so far too."

Shanahan should have even more offensive options in the coming weeks. Samuel is expected to be activated off of injured reserve in the next day and start practicing tomorrow. The 49ers will use the upcoming three days of practices to determine if Samuel can play on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles or if he has to wait another week.

Once he returns, though, Shanahan knows having both Samuel and Aiyuk on the field will open up his playbook a bit and probably give opposing defenses fits.

"It's good to have a few guys out there you can choose to do it and do it with, and I think we have more than just those two also," Shanahan added.

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