He's the type of guy to be the first one in and the last one out. After practice he stays on the field a few extra minutes to get additional reps on the sled. That's the kind of guy you'd want on your team. So, it's no surprise head coach Kyle Shanahan signed veteran tight end Logan Paulsen during the team's first wave of free-agent additions.
Paulsen has emerged as a legit contender to be the 49ers starting tight end. So far throughout training camp, he's collected a few checkdowns and hauled a couple of touchdown catches. But Shanahan's expectations of his tight ends goes beyond the ability to contribute as a pass-catcher.
Last season, the Atlanta Falcons tight ends combined for 788 yards, making up just 15 percent of the team's receiving total. The tight end position plays a fundamental role in Shanahan's zone-blocking scheme.
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"I'm really excited with the direction this team is going," Paulsen said. "I'm going to do whatever they want me to do. Like the touchdown (Saturday) was all scheme. So, that's Kyle's touchdown in my opinion. So, however Kyle wants to use me, whatever he wants me to do. If he wants me to score touchdowns that's great. If not, that's great too."
Despite not playing a single down with the 49ers yet, the veteran tight end knows what to expect. The Paulsen-Shanahan ties go back to 2010 with the Washington Redskins. The former undrafted free agent spent four seasons under then-head coach Mike Shanahan with the Redskins while Kyle served as the offensive coordinator.
In his five-year career with the Redskins, Paulsen posted 82 catches for 816 yards and six touchdowns while serving as a premier blocking tight end.
Now in Kyle's first season as a head coach, there's not much variation from the father-son coaching duo.
"(Kyle's coaching style) is about what it was like when I was with his father," Paulsen said. "They have very similar approaches. Like when it's time to work, they want you to work. When it's time to hit, it's time to hit. And if you meet those expectations then you're going to be alright with them. He's kind of adopted that same approach."