Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ John Lynch ‘real proud’ of Deebo Samuel’s development

Rohan Chakravarthi
Oct 16, 2021 at 12:30 PM--

There hasn't been a bigger breakout from a receiver in the NFL than what the 49ers have seen from Deebo Samuel this season. He's been that special.

Samuel currently is 2nd in the NFL in receiving yards with 548, trailing only Davante Adams, who has 579 yards, through the first five games of the season.

Samuel's impact has been felt from the get-go as he was Jimmy Garoppolo's go-to receiver in Week 1 against the Lions, where the third-year star caught nine passes for 189 yards.

Samuel, who was taken 36th overall in the 2019 NFL Draft, had an injury-plagued sophomore season, where he produced only 391 yards over seven games, after an impressive rookie year, where he caught 57 passes for 802 yards and added 159 more yards on the ground.

John Lynch spoke very highly of his breakout star in an interview with NBC Sports, stating that the 49ers loved him in the draft due to his ability to contribute on multiple levels.

"Deebo, back from the time we scouted him at South Carolina, he's just always been a playmaker," Lynch told NBC Sports Bay Area's Matt Maiocco, "whether it was as a kickoff returner at South Carolina, running the football, catching the football. He's an excellent receiver, but he's an excellent football player. He's an excellent competitor.

While Lynch agrees that the coaching staff has done an impressive job, the general manager credits Samuel for all the hard work he's put in to stay healthy and be a key contributor on this football team.

"I'm real proud of Deebo's development, and I think he gets the credit. I think he's been coached very well, but I think, ultimately, it comes down to the player. Are you willing to invest what it takes to be great? And Deebo has put that investment forward. His body has allowed him to this year by staying healthy, and we're sure fortunate that we have him.

Lynch also sees how other teams have begun to use some of the San Francisco-style offense, where having a plug-and-play gadget receiver like Samuel is extremely valuable.

"I think imitation is the greatest form of flattery, and when you see people around the league trying to find the next Deebo, and we're seeing a lot of that around the league, and people utilizing a lot of the things that we do, that's a tremendous compliment to Deebo. He's earned that."

Samuel will certainly be a focal point in the 49er offense with George Kittle having been placed on IR, and he'll look to continue his impressive season following San Francisco's bye week during a Sunday Night matchup against the Colts in Week 7.

You can watch the rest of Lynch's interview with NBC Sports Bay Area's Matt Maiocco down below.

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