Good Morning Faithful,
Here are the top 49ers headlines for Thursday, March 4.
New and Notable
2021 Free Agency Primer: Top Players Available
The NFL calendar continues to inch towards the commencement of the new league year on March 17, which also signifies the start of free agency. As discussed before, the 49ers have a number of decisions to make over the next few weeks as the team entered the offseason with a whopping 38 players set to hit the open market.
Conversely, a number of players around the league with expiring contracts will be made available to seek employment elsewhere, some who could be ideal fits with the San Francisco 49ers. Last year, the 49ers saw value in adding defensive end Kerry Hyder Jr. in free agency, who led the team with 8.5 sacks and also posted career highs in quarterback hits (18) and tackles (49) last season.
D.J. Jones and Solomon Thomas Blend Passion for Food, Football and Community
D.J. Jones and Solomon Thomas' relationship goes far beyond Sundays. It dates back to when the two were selected by the 49ers in the first draft class under San Francisco's new regime, spearheaded by Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch in 2017.
Based in South Carolina, D.J.s father, David "Big Dave" Jones', heads a successful barbecue business that has served the likes of professional athletes and sports teams, including the 49ers and Dallas Cowboys, politicians and the general public alike for the past 24 years. Because of this love for both barbecue and his community, he was inspired to whip up a product that barbecue lovers could enjoy from their own kitchens while investing back into the community.
Now, Jones and Thomas are coming together to create new barbecue sauces for a cause. Read More >>>
To learn more about Big Dave's sauces and how to order your bottles, visit TheBigDavesBBQ.com.
Fields II (5-10, 180) originally entered the NFL after signing with the Kansas City Chiefs as an undrafted rookie free agent on May 6, 2019. After spending training camp with the Chiefs, he was traded to the Minnesota Vikings on August 31, 2019. He appeared in Minnesota's first game of the season prior to being waived on September 14, 2019. Fields was later signed to the Vikings practice squad on September 16, where he spent the remainder of the season.
49ers Wide Receivers Coach Wes Welker Gives an Exclusive Interview for the WON Digital Magazine
How would you assess rookie WR Brandon Aiyuk's first season?
"I thought it was good. Obviously, it was tough for rookies this year coming in with not having the offseason and other factors, but Brandon kept on improving throughout the year and getting better and better. Overall, we're really happy with Brandon. He has the potential to be a great player for us in the future."
If you had to rank the most important skills of a WR between hands, speed, or route running, what would it be?
"That's a tough one, but speed is always something that we emphasize. Speed is definitely a huge part, but all of it is important, all three of those factors are things we look for in all our guys. You have to be able to catch the ball to play receiver so I'd say speed, then hands and last would be route running. The route running can sometimes take more time, while the other two you either have it or you don't."
The WR group always seems to have great chemistry with one another. What goes into creating such a tight knit group both on and off the field?
"It's all about the guys and the types of guys we have in our room. Kyle and John don't just bring in the right talent, they bring in the right people as well. That's a huge part of what makes it enjoyable to come to work every single day. Any time you have a bad apple it brings everyone else down and we've been fortunate not to have dealt with that. We try to have fun in our room. We are very serious about the game, but we also try to have fun and enjoy it. The key thing is the personalities and our guys really mesh well together."
Read the full interview in the March edition of the WON Digital Magazine.