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Top 10 Offensive Player Developments to Track in 2019

So, I started out with defense. But what about offense? There's now a logjam at receiver and running, along with the stage settle for a battle between depth players on the interior OL and TE spots. These would be my top 10 players on offense to track development of:

1. OG Joshua Garnett
As one who was NEVER a fan of the pick from the beginning, he had an unsurprisingly rough start. He hasn't stayed healthy, and hasn't appeared to be particularly liked by the coaching staff. That said, last year when he played, he actually wasn't bad. He was neck and neck with Mike Person and seemed to do well for a bit when Person left Week 1's game hurt. He shockingly stifled Aaron Donald in Week 17 after filling in for an injured Laken Tomlinson, getting into a scuffle with him as Donald seemed angered that Garnett wouldn't just get out of the way and let him sack Mullens. At one point, I even saw him get snaps at center. All this said, even though his option was declined, by no means does that guarantee he won't return. The window may be small, but he has a golden chance to prove himself this year. It's up to him to step it up and seize that opportunity.

2. QB CJ Beathard
Beathard is a guy that's easy to like because of his toughness, heart, deep ball accuracy, and the fact that he's always kind of been an underdog. His processing speed just hasn't been nearly good enough, and he's a prime candidate to get traded after getting outplayed by Mullens. To be frank, it's unfair to totally blame him for several of our losses. While he had his share of mistakes, let's not forget that the entire team around him was screwing things up royally at the worst times as well. With Mullens the clear front-runner to be QB2, I have to wonder if perhaps a fire will be lit so strongly under Beathard, that maybe in year three we see a different guy. I'm not holding my breath, and I'm sure many fans won't either, but he's an intriguing young player to watch. I like the guy, and might not be totally opposed to keeping him as a third QB if the team decides to do so.

3. WR Kendrick Bourne
Not the biggest, not the fastest, but just seems to have enough ability to get open and make tough catches when he has to. He made nice strides from year one to year two, and he'll have to do the same in year three in order to make the team. However, I wouldn't be totally surprised either if he were traded, depending on what the team sees in its other up-and-coming young players.

4. WR Richie James
James offers more versatility as a runner on jet sweeps, KR ability Trent doesn't have, he hasn't been hurt, and he's faster than Trent Taylor. All of these things should give him an edge right? Not necessarily. In the receiving game, Taylor's per game production -- despite being hurt last year -- still dwarfs James' and Richie will need to take it to another level to make the squad as a slot receiver. As it stands right now, Taylor is the better pure slot receiver.

5. WR Trent Taylor
Jimmy G's security blanket in 2017, he just couldn't get open in 2018. How much did his back injury affect this? He's in for a tough battle with Richie James, and Jalen Hurd's ability to play the slot could push Taylor out via trade as well. Still, he's the most experienced and proven slot receiver we have among the group of him, James, and the newcomer Hurd.

6. OT Shonn Coleman
We really have no idea what he can do at this point since his acquisition came so late in the pre-season, he had no chance to learn the offense in time. He'll compete for the swing tackle job, but he'll have to beat out rookie Justin Skule. Hopefully he shows us he's worth keeping around.

7. QB Nick Mullens
No NFL starts, no problem. Mullens was the feel-good story of the year for the Niners, helping us finally beat those pesky Seahawks. While he has his limitations, he proved he could very well be a start in the NFL. With less than a year of starts under his belt, and entering just his third season in 2019, I feel really good about our QB situation if Mullens has to play at all. Obviously we hope he can sit comfortably on the bench all year, but it's nice to know we've got a guy that could start somewhere else one day.

8. OG Erik Magnuson
Magnuson seemed to do better at guard than center. He keeps showing flashes, but he hasn't had much playing time and has been banged up the past two seasons. While it seems like he's a good bet to make the team again, I think the fact that the team continues to pickup interior OL off the street just signals the incumbent depth may be in the danger zone.

9. WR Dante Pettis
Pettis has the talent to be a star if he can avoid getting hurt, I'm just worried he's always going to be dinged up. Perhaps he just needs to avoid taking any kind of a hit whatsoever. We definitely need him because he's currently the best receiver on the team.

10. OT Mike McGlinchey
It's everyone's expectation that Mike is on his way to being a Pro Bowl OT very soon. If we're winning, I imagine he'll get those honors. No sophomore slump, please.
Only players I'm concerned about on this list is Pettis and MM. Everybody else are players I'm really not that interested about in general. I would prefer them to keep James over Taylor simply for his big play ability.
1, 6, 8. Overall, I want to see how the interior shapes up. IIRC Tomlinson, Richburg, Person were each acquired to immediately start. Seems like a vote of no confidence with Garnett and others. At the same time, they didn't address the interior in the draft, so maybe they have some hope in those guys.

3, 4, 5, 9. My biggest concern is health, even with Samuel and Hurd. I think one of these guys coming into camp strong and remaining healthy should go a long way in securing a roster spot.
  • thl408
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For me Number 1 is Jimmy G. The guy has 10 career starts. I know he's a 5th year vet but holding a clipboard doesn't count as experience. He can crunch all the film he wants from the all22, that's not close to being behind the offensive line making reads. He's a toddler in terms of QB experience and has a lot of development to go through.
Originally posted by thl408:
For me Number 1 is Jimmy G. The guy has 10 career starts. I know he's a 5th year vet but holding a clipboard doesn't count as experience. He can crunch all the film he wants from the all22, that's not close to being behind the offensive line making reads. He's a toddler in terms of QB experience and has a lot of development to go through.

Yes. Great point. He's the cornerstone piece.
Originally posted by zonkers:
Originally posted by thl408:
For me Number 1 is Jimmy G. The guy has 10 career starts. I know he's a 5th year vet but holding a clipboard doesn't count as experience. He can crunch all the film he wants from the all22, that's not close to being behind the offensive line making reads. He's a toddler in terms of QB experience and has a lot of development to go through.

Yes. Great point. He's the cornerstone piece.

Fair point, indeed. While he didn't meet the criteria to be among those that I would list, I think we all very much hope that Jimmy G shows an improved ability to play within the system. 2017 was natural ability/street ball improv. 2018 was easing into the nuances of the system. I don't know if watching the game will have given him the chance to do that mentally, but I hope so. He seemed to have things down in New England when he was in that situation. But again, that's a small sample size.

I feel like players 1-8 could all potentially get traded at some point, with the exception of Mullens this year. I don't think he goes anywhere, at least not yet. It would be nice to get some draft capital out of players that wouldn't otherwise make the team.
Originally posted by thl408:
For me Number 1 is Jimmy G. The guy has 10 career starts. I know he's a 5th year vet but holding a clipboard doesn't count as experience. He can crunch all the film he wants from the all22, that's not close to being behind the offensive line making reads. He's a toddler in terms of QB experience and has a lot of development to go through.

No kidding. If he doesn't stay healthy, all of this other bs likely doesn't matter. The fact that he has averaged a major injury every 5 starts in the NFL isn't encouraging. It's also just not clear at this point if he's as good as we hope. His play has been extraordinary at times, but he also has a handful of headscratching plays (usually 1-2 a game).
1. Dante Pettis
2. Shonn Coleman
3. Trent Taylor
4. Richie James
5. Joshua Garnett
6. George Kittle
7. Nick Mullens
8. Erik Magnuson
9. Nick Mullens
10. Mike McGlinchey

Here is my list. I don't think Garnett has a future here. Pettis is the most interesting player on offense for us. He has the chance to develop into our WR1 this year.

Coleman has talent to be a solid player. I hope we never see him play but I assume we probably will.

Trent Taylor will be fighting for a roster spot with James. James has more raw ability but Taylor is really good in the redzone and getting open on 3rd down.
  • Giedi
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To me BeatHard (unless he dramatically improves from year 2) is going to be traded.

I think Wr and OLine there are going to be some great battles as the first poster stated.

I think Jimmy is going to be fine. Just give him time, some weapons (as they did in the draft) and he'll be fine. Kyle is going to make sure that Jimmy improves and while he's no spring chicken - if he can play until he's fourty two like Brady wants to, we'll have a decent decade with him at QB.

As for undrafteds, I'm really intrigued with Wilton Speight. Bigger than Mullens and I think may have a stronger arm, if he makes the practice squad, I hope next year he can challengt Mullen's for 2nd String QB and use Mullen's to pull in some draft capital.
Solid post OTC!

Garnett - I was all in favor of drop-kicking him. BUT that performance against Donald forced me to hope that he woke up. It sure would help us A LOT if he could merit his draft status.

CJ - I also like CJ ror all the reasons you mentioned. It'd be great if we could get something for him and/or include some of the guys here in a package deal.

3 WR - Bourne, James, Taylor - they're good but, IMO, haven't done anything that guarantees they make the team. And No-Way we keep al of them.

Mullins - Excellent security if JG goes down again. I feel very confident in him coming off the bench.

Magnuson - Until we get someone better we should keep him. Also he really knows the playbook & terminology having been here as long as he has.

Pettis - I think he will really light it up this season.

McG - Great draft selection and I'm hoping we can find another very soon.
[ Edited by LasVegasWally on May 9, 2019 at 1:49 PM ]

Along with all of the other players mentioned I am especially interested in Skule and Reynolds. I think it would be wonderful if both of these players were impactful for the Oline. We need a solid backup Tackle and a solid OG.
Originally posted by LasVegasWally:
Solid post OTC!

Garnett - I was all in favor of drop-kicking him. BUT that performance against Donald forced me to hope that he woke up. It sure would help us A LOT if he could merit his draft status.

CJ - I also like CJ ror all the reasons you mentioned. It'd be great if we could get something for him and/or include some of the guys here in a package deal.

3 WR - Bourne, James, Taylor - they're good but, IMO, haven't done anything that guarantees they make the team. And No-Way we keep al of them.

Mullins - Excellent security if JG goes down again. I feel very confident in him coming off the bench.

Magnuson - Until we get someone better we should keep him. Also he really knows the playbook & terminology having been here as long as he has.

Pettis - I think he will really light it up this season.

McG - Great draft selection and I'm hoping we can find another very soon.

I sure would like to see some cut-ups specifically of Garnett's snaps. Thl, jonny, what are the chances we can get a look at those?
  • thl408
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Originally posted by OnTheClock:
I sure would like to see some cut-ups specifically of Garnett's snaps. Thl, jonny, what are the chances we can get a look at those?

I just skimmed through that week 17 game and there were only about 4-5 times where he went toe to toe with Donald in a 1v1 situation. He didn't get embarrassed. I'll try to post cutups at some point. It's a long offseason.
Originally posted by thl408:
Originally posted by OnTheClock:
I sure would like to see some cut-ups specifically of Garnett's snaps. Thl, jonny, what are the chances we can get a look at those?

I just skimmed through that week 17 game and there were only about 4-5 times where he went toe to toe with Donald in a 1v1 situation. He didn't get embarrassed. I'll try to post cutups at some point. It's a long offseason.

No do it now!

.... please
  • thl408
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Originally posted by OnTheClock:
Originally posted by zonkers:
Originally posted by thl408:
For me Number 1 is Jimmy G. The guy has 10 career starts. I know he's a 5th year vet but holding a clipboard doesn't count as experience. He can crunch all the film he wants from the all22, that's not close to being behind the offensive line making reads. He's a toddler in terms of QB experience and has a lot of development to go through.
Yes. Great point. He's the cornerstone piece.
Fair point, indeed. While he didn't meet the criteria to be among those that I would list, I think we all very much hope that Jimmy G shows an improved ability to play within the system. 2017 was natural ability/street ball improv. 2018 was easing into the nuances of the system. I don't know if watching the game will have given him the chance to do that mentally, but I hope so. He seemed to have things down in New England when he was in that situation. But again, that's a small sample size.

I feel like players 1-8 could all potentially get traded at some point, with the exception of Mullens this year. I don't think he goes anywhere, at least not yet. It would be nice to get some draft capital out of players that wouldn't otherwise make the team.
What is the criteria for being on the list? Players that haven't shown much but might develop into something?

The reason why I think Jimmy should be on this list is because I don't think any QB is fully developed after 10 NFL starts, two of which he didn't finish. I'm not saying he isn't good, I'm saying he has a lot of room to develop and improve because once he plays against all the different defenses, and experiences all the different game situations, he'll become a better player. If you think he's good now, which I do, expect him to get better as he plays and develops in Kyle's offense.
My top 5:
Jimmy
Pettis: looked good. Let's see how much trust he can earn from Jimmy and how well they mesh. That TD vs MIN is what develops trust between QB and WR.
Taylor: show that he's recovered from his back surgery. He had chemistry with Jimmy on a few broken plays in 2017. If he can continue that he should win snaps over Richie James.
Garnett: Outland trophy winner, rebuilt physique. Time to show what he's got. Come to camp healthy and win snaps over a journeyman (Person).
Bourne: he has his moments but with two more WR prospects, he has lots of competition for a spot on the team.
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