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The 49ers continue to try and put playmakers around Jimmy Garappolo, even if they are now doing it out of the bargain bin.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported that the team has inked Tavon Austin and JJ Nelson in hopes that they can be productive, veteran additions.
Having signed George Kittle to a five-year, $75M deal the team still had to solidify its receivers. Deebo Samuels will miss the start of the season, Emmanuel Sanders is now with the Saints, Marquise Goodwin is an Eagle, and Richie James is on the NLI list as of today. That means excluding Kittle, the receiver with the most catches on the roster from last year is Kendrick Bourne — who had 30 receptions.
Austin has never materialized into the weapon many expected him to be when the Rams selected him with the No. 8 pick in the 2013 Draft. He is also now 30 years old, has been transitioning into a gimmick player that will line up as a running back, but can also use his speed in the slot, as a jet, or in the return game.
His last two years were spent in Dallas, with zero starts and only 21 receptions.
Nelson has been somewhat of a disappointment of his own over a five-year career. Nelson was drafted in the fifth round, but had back-to-back 500-yard seasons which led many to believe a breakout was coming. That never materialized.
His last two years in Arizona and with the Raiders totaled 12 catches and 100 yards.
Hopefully Jalen Hurd and Brandon Aiyuk are ready to come in and be impact players because Dante Pettis is the only other receiver on the roster. He had 11 catches last year.