Buy 49ers at Rams NFC Championship tickets →
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports


Why Brandon Aiyuk is building excitement about the 49ers’ future

Rohan Chakravarthi
Nov 21, 2021 at 2:45 PM--


Brandon Aiyuk came to play, yet again, during Sunday's early-morning 31-10 win against the Jacksonville Jaguars, catching all seven of his targets for 85 yards and a touchdown, leading the 49ers in all three categories.

Aiyuk, who's been a major factor in the passing game over the last four weeks in a complementary role to star Deebo Samuel, has shown signs of his rookie self, and was a crucial player in the passing game for Jimmy Garoppolo, who seemed to trust his 23-year old receiver in key throwing situations.

Samuel, who was utilized mainly as a rusher Sunday, only had one catch for 15 yards as opposed to eight carries for 79 yards and a touchdown.

After the game, Kyle Shanahan had nothing but praise for his prized sophomore receiver, explaining how the coaching staff knew what Aiyuk had in the tank, which was why they rode him as hard as they did.

"I think it says more about him as a person than anything because we all know B.A. is a talented dude," Shanahan said. "But it takes a lot of stuff to be able to play in this league week in and week out. He started out behind this year. And I know I rode him hard, and his [receivers] coach did, and a lot of us did.

Despite the standard that Shanahan set, the head coach was impressed at how Aiyuk responded to the pressure placed upon him.

"And I just thought it was impressive how, being younger, being new to this league, when things aren't going your right way, and people are putting pressure on you, not just outside, but inside, a lot of guys tend to point the finger and feel sorry for themselves, which is what worries you. And you've got to wait until the offseason, almost, to bring them back."

Rather than succumbing to the pressure, Shanahan described how Aiyuk solely focused on improving his craft, both on game days and in practice, and how the receiver continued putting in the work when the gameplan didn't go in his favor.

"He wasn't like that. He kept working, kept trying to get better, and I knew everyone's seen it these last couple of weeks, but you could see it happening in practice too. He didn't always get the results and the targets and stuff, but we don't really plan that. I thought Deebo [Samuel] would get more targets today. It just comes out the way it does."

As the 49ers head towards the last stretch of the season, Shanahan noted how with Aiyuk, Samuel, and tight end George Kittle, the 49ers finally had their three top options fully healthy for a period of time, which has heavily contributed to their success over the last two weeks.

And when you've got Aiyuk out there playing like a true starting player, Deebo, [George] Kittle, I think it's the first time we've had those three, three weeks in a row, I don't know if this is right, but it seems like in two years, almost. I don't know if they've ever been out [there together] that many times week after week, so it's been good. And when they're like that, they're out there more consistently, I think we just get better as a whole with the quarterback. Everyone can be more consistent."

With Garoppolo having arguably the best stretch of his career, the 49ers will ride their momentum back to Levi's Stadium in a crucial game with major playoff implications against the Minnesota Vikings, as the two teams are currently tied in the playoff standings.



Facebook Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News



'We're a much better team now': George Kittle, Brandon Aiyuk, DeMeco Ryans discuss 49ers-Packers rematch

By David Bonilla
Jan 19

Week 3's matchup between the San Francisco 49ers and Green Bay Packers was a heartbreaker for The Faithful. The fans at Levi's Stadium watched Jimmy Garoppolo engineer a thrilling comeback touchdown drive to take the lead, only to watch Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers crush their hopes with a game-winning drive in the closing seconds. A lot has changed since that 30-28 defeat. That kicked off a four-game losing streak for the 49ers. However, San Francisco finished the season strong and made the playoffs in the final week of the regular season. Green Bay muscled its way to the No. 1 seed in the NFC. Now, we get to watch the two teams go head-to-head again, this time for the right to advance to the NFC Championship Game. "I don't think they look much



Rapoport: Jimmy Garoppolo helping his future with deep 49ers playoff run

By David Bonilla
Jan 24

People keep writing off Jimmy Garoppolo, and the San Francisco 49ers quarterback keeps winning football games. He's now won three consecutive starts while playing with a pretty severe right thumb injury. First, his Niners beat the Los Angeles Rams to clinch a playoff berth in the final regular-season game. Then, he helped his team upset the NFC East champions, the Dallas Cowboys. On Saturday, Garoppolo was part of a stunner, helping knock off the top-seeded Green Bay Packers. By the way, each of those games was on the road, including the frigid matchup this past weekend at Lambeau Field. Garoppolo's teammates believe in him. His coaches obviously believe in him. Kyle Shanahan has stuck with the veteran passer, despite having the No. 3 overall pick, Trey Lance, on



Uncertain future helped Jimmy Garoppolo lock in on 49ers' playoff run, says Kyle Shanahan

By David Bonilla
Jan 24

Jimmy Garoppolo has openly acknowledged he is well aware that each game could be his last with the San Francisco 49ers. He knows the team's situation. The 49ers used a lot of draft capital to trade up and acquire his successor, Trey Lance, with the No. 3 overall pick. Lance, not Garoppolo, is the quarterback of the future. That could have created an awkward situation for Garoppolo. That wasn't the case earlier in the season because it was easy enough to focus on the many remaining games. However, as that number of games diminished, Garoppolo started to think about his situation. Before the regular-season finale against the Los Angeles Rams, before the 49ers clinched a playoff berth, Garoppolo approached his fullback, Kyle



49ers sign WR KeeSean Johnson to a reserve/future contract

By David Bonilla
Jan 26

The San Francisco 49ers have signed wide receiver KeeSean Johnson to a reserve/future contract, per the NFL transaction wire. The Arizona Cardinals made Johnson (6-1, 201) a sixth-round selection out of Fresno State in 2019. The 25-year-old has caught 36 passes for 360 yards with a touchdown through his first two NFL seasons. The Cardinals waived him on August 30, 2021. The Philadelphia Eagles signed Johnson to their practice squad on September 2, 2021. He appeared in their Wild Card playoff game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on January 16, a 31-15 loss. Johnson played two offensive snaps and 16 special teams snaps in the postseason appearance. The 49ers worked


Featured

Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone