Player Feature: Kyle Juszczyk
Each offseason, Juszczyk likes to build at least one piece of furniture with his own hands. His most recent piece of furniture assembled was a farmhouse-style kitchen table.
In search of his favorite pregame meal, Juszczyk settled on filet mignon with sweet potatoes and spaghetti with scrambled eggs, a meal he describes as, "The perfect combination of protein and the right carbs before a game."
NFL players had the opportunity to participate in the NFL's annual My Cause, My Cleats campaign during Week 14 of the 2019 season. Juszczyk and his teammates represented their respective causes with custom-designed cleats to raise awareness and funding for the cause of their choice. Juszczyk represented the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, saying, "I play to honor my wife's mother, Virginia."
Read more about Kyle Juszczyk by clicking his bio below.
Coach's Corner: Wes Welker
This month's "Coach's Corner" is an interview with 49ers Wide Receivers Coach, Wes Welker.
How valuable is separation and run after the catch ability in this offense?
I think it's a huge thing. It's something that we definitely look for in our evaluations and we try to find guys with the right mindset of not only running good routes and creating that separation, but once they get the ball in their hands what are they doing with it. How many yards after catch are they getting? We really try to get our guys to excel as much as we can. We show a lot of clips of different things, trying to get the most out of them as far as yards after the catch and getting separation so the quarterback has a place to go with the ball.
What is more important for a wide receiver's success? Route running or pass-catching ability?
At the end of the day, it's about getting open and catching the ball. I think all those things go hand-in-hand. It's a lot easier to catch the ball when you're able to get separation, but at the end of the day there's a lot of guys that just have really good hands and they don't necessarily need to get a lot of separation. I think some quarterbacks are comfortable throwing 50/50 balls compared to other guys who want that separation. I think it's different from team to team, from player to player and what their philosophy is. Obviously, I like guys who can separate and get away from people and if you are able to do that, it makes it easier to be able to have the hands to catch the ball.
How important is run blocking for wide receivers in this system?
It's a huge part. A perfect example is the NFC Championship game where we only threw the ball eight times. Our receiver room really buys into it and I think in all of Kyle Shanahan's offenses over the years you always see the wideouts block and it's no different now. It's a big part of what we do and being able to run the football. The explosive plays really come when the receivers are blocking. I tell the guys all the time you never know what's going to happen so don't be the guy that keeps us from getting that explosive play for a touchdown. They've really bought into that and take a lot of pride in it.
Last season, we saw wide receivers get really involved in both the pass and run game. How difficult is it for a defense to defend an offense that has WRs who can be so productive in the run game?
Deebo Samuel especially had a great year last year getting the ball and us finding ways to get him the ball, reverses and all that. I think it adds a whole other element to what the defense has to think about. I think Brandon Aiyuk was one of the better punt returners in college football last year and I think he has the ability to do it as well. There's a lot of other guys that once they get the ball in their hands and get moving, get their bodies running, they are able to cut and do all those different things. It just adds a whole other element that the defense has to worry about.
To read more about Coach Welker, click the bio below.
WON of Us: Patty
Being raised a 49ers fan, Patty Soriano has always been connected with the team and sees how the organization can directly impact the next generation of fans.
I have been a 49ers fan for as long as I can remember. My earliest memory is watching games with my family back in 1976/77 when Jim Plunkett played with the 49ers. I can recall it being a big deal back then because he was local, attended James Lick High school where I would later graduate from and it sort of energized us to see him playing for the Niners. My whole family were 49ers fans and growing up. I remember my uncle would come over every Sunday to watch the game with us.
What do you love about WON?
I love the fact that women fans are being recognized as a key part of the fan base! Other than recognition from the organization, it is also a great way to learn more about the game, meet the players, and interact with other women who love football. We are offered such a variety of events to participate in throughout the year like various health and happy hour style events. My favorite WON event has to be the Health and Wellness Fair! As attendees, we can get massages, acupuncture, and there have even been fitness classes on the field at Levi's® Stadium. For women with daughters that are interested in careers in sports, I think this group can empower them to see all of the different jobs in sports and offers a visual for what opportunities exist for women in professional sports.
Get to know WON member Patty.
Was there one inspirational moment in team history that confirmed your 49ers fandom?
It would definitely be the 1994 season when we went on to beat the San Diego Chargers in the Super Bowl and bring the fifth Lombardi Trophy home! This was also the same year that my daughter Sarina was born so 1994 is very special for me. One of the biggest highlights as a fan was having the opportunity to attend the Super Bowl game in Miami this past February!
What 49ers tradition or superstition do you/your family have?
We don't do too much, but we do record every game and wear our 49ers jerseys/gear for every game no matter where we are, obviously if we are at games, but if we are home or on trips, we always have our Niners gear ready to rep. I've worn many jerseys through the years but with the current squad, I am wearing my Jimmy G jersey.
What impact has the 49ers had on your life?
Luckily I married a hardcore 49ers fan who was a season ticket holder at Candlestick Park and we were able to share so many great memories there together. Also, all of my family and everyone on my husband's side are all 49ers fans! It's just a great way for all of us to be able to come together, see family, it keeps us connected. We have had numerous events, tailgates, and parties surrounding the 49ers over the years. Beyond our lives as fans, the 49ers have given my family additional opportunities as well! My son worked with the 49ers EDU team in their STEAM program and is now a student teacher and my daughter was one of the first women to be selected for the Denise DeBartolo-York women's internship program and turned that into a full-time role as a Video Producer for 49ers Studios.
The 49ers Foundation's direct program 49ers PREP presented by U.S. Bank announced a collaboration with NFL Mexico that will bring its Virtual Flag Football Training Camp presented by Mountain Mike's Pizza to kids across the U.S. and Mexico. Through this partnership, all 49ers PREP flag football content will be available in Spanish.
The 49ers PREP program typically impacts over 130,000 youth in the Bay Area, with many being from Title I schools. With the realities of COVID-19, 49ers PREP recognized the demand for digital content and understands that minority communities have been negatively impacted by this pandemic on all fronts. This led the 49ers PREP team to translate all content from their on-demand, 4-week Virtual Flag Football Training Camp into Spanish and partnered with NFL Mexico to increase their impact throughout the Bay Area and anywhere Spanish speakers are interested to learn about football and the 49ers.
"The 49ers PREP Flag Football Virtual Training Camp is going to represent a very useful tool for the NFL Mexico office when promoting physical activation at home among our Flag Football Program participants," said Jesus Alvarez, NFL Mexico manager of youth football and community relations. "We are excited and proud to collaborate with the 49ers organization on this initiative. We believe boys and girls will really enjoy the program and expect it to have a positive impact on those kids and their families."
"Representing football throughout the Bay Area, we feel a responsibility to make content accessible to youth of all ages, backgrounds, and ethnicities," said Jared Muela, 49ers PREP Director. "We are excited to collaborate with NFL Mexico to provide Spanish content to our PREP participants. This is something we have wanted to do for a long time and I could not think of a better time to launch it than during National Hispanic Heritage Month."
Save the Dates:
All for WON Virtual 5K
You're invited to join the first-ever 49ers All For WON Virtual 5K fun run/walk/roll benefiting the American Cancer Society. Challenge yourself and your Gameday crew to walking, rolling, or running a 5k (3.1 miles) on your own time, anywhere in the world (including on your treadmill at home pre-game). Participate during the event window between October 24 and November 1, log your miles on our online tracker, post your photos to social media using #AllForWON, and receive a limited-edition 49ers All for WON Runner Waist Pack.
As part of the team's Crucial Catch presented by Dignity Health campaign, a portion of your registration will be donated to the American Cancer Society. The NFL, its clubs, players, the NFL Players Association, and the American Cancer Society are committed to the fight against cancer.
To be a part of WON's fight against cancer, register HERE.
Exclusive for WON Gold Members, you have the opportunity to register for the event for just $29 (40% savings). Offer expires at 11:59pm on Thursday, October 1.
This Month in 49ers History
October 16, 1988
Roger Craig romped through the Los Angeles Rams for a career-high 190 rushing yards and three scores in the 49ers 24-21 win at Anaheim Stadium. Craig's dazzling 46-yard run against the Rams was his longest of the season. Craig gained 1,502 yards on the ground and nabbed 76 passes for another 534 yards in 1988.