The San Francisco 49ers made wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk a priority, trading up for him in the 2020 NFL Draft.
Well, that was interesting. The San Francisco 49ers entered the 2020 NFL Draft with limited draft capital, but it’s not like they had many needs entering the draft either. Instead of sitting back and hoping, the 49ers aggressively attack their one of their most obvious needs, trading up from No. 31 to No. 25 with the Minnesota Vikings to snag Brandon Aiyuk.
Aiyuk may be considered a bit of a reach by some, but he is an absolutely perfect fit for the 49ers’ offense. Head coach Kyle Shanahan knows how to get his receivers the ball in space and Aiyuk is one of the best run after catch receivers in the 2020 NFL Draft class. Make no mistake about it, Aiyuk is a dynamic playmaker who is going to fit well in San Francisco.
I credit the San Francisco 49ers for going up and getting their guy here, but they probably would have been able to sit back and still snag Aiyuk at No. 31. However, that is obviously easy to say from my couch. San Francisco wanted to make sure they got their guy and were not able to risk losing him.
Aiyuk’s ability to create is what immediately stands out on tape, but he is a solid overall receiver as well. He is a legitimate deep threat on the outside who tracks the ball in the air extremely well. Aiyuk separates on deep routes at a high level. He also has extremely long arms and does show plenty of upside in contested-catch situations.
Pairing Aiyuk with Deebo Samuel gives the 49ers an extremely exciting wide receiver to build around on the offensive side of the ball. These are two top-notch run after catch receivers who are going to make plays for Jimmy Garoppolo for many years. I like this pick for the San Francisco 49ers more than I would for any other team in this range.