Good Morning Faithful,
Here are the top 49ers headlines for Wednesday, May 19.
New and Notable
The Most Underrated Player on All 32 NFL Teams
Pro Football Focus writer Sam Monson used the analytics site's grading system to highlight players whose performances have been excellent in limited playing time or who deserve more recognition. For San Francisco, Monson looked to a new face on the roster, defensive lineman Maurice Hurst. Hurst signed with the 49ers in free agency from the Las Vegas Raiders. The defensive lineman was originally drafted by the Raiders in the fifth round (140th overall) of the 2018 NFL Draft. Throughout his three-year career with Las Vegas, he has appeared in 40 games (17 starts) and registered 76 tackles, 8.0 sacks, seven passes defensed, two fumble recoveries, one forced fumble and one interception. In 2020, Hurst appeared in 11 games (three starts) and finished with 27 tackles, one pass defensed and 0.5 sacks. Here's what Monson had to say:
"After being inexplicably released by the Raiders, Hurst now gets to show the 49ers what a valuable player he can be as part of their defensive line rotation. Maurice Hurst may never have become a devastating NFL player, but he has been a consistently good pass-rusher, earning PFF pass-rushing grades of at least 77.0 over each of the last two seasons."
Pro Football Focus Identifies Toughest Stretch of 49ers 2021 Schedule
The 49ers are set to face off against six teams who made postseason appearances in 2020 in addition to their upcoming opponents owning a 132-138-2 record last season. But like seasons' prior, can the 49ers expect a daunting gauntlet of matchups that will test the team's endurance?
PFF currently has the 49ers slate as the easiest schedule heading into 2021, factoring in player grades and opponent projected wins into their methodology, not just previous records. According to their study, San Francisco's most difficult stretch of the season currently sits between Weeks 3-5 of the regular season.
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In the 15th episode of "Inside the Oval" presented by Dignity Health, 49ers Digital Media Manager Derrick Sanchez discussed the evolution of his role since joining the team in 2017, the importance of networking in the sports industry, shared his favorite 49ers memories and more.
Take a virtual tour of the 49ers Museum and explore the team's 75-year history through 11 galleries, which are 360-degree digital presentations of the actual exhibit spaces. Start your tour now.
Get a look behind the curtain as the NFL schedule makers reveal the art and science behind the creation of the 2021 NFL schedule. Watch the video here.