49ers regret passing on WR Baldwin


49ers regret passing on WR Baldwin

SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers have not made many mistakes on or off the field during this calendar year. But coach Jim Harbaugh 'fessed up to a blunder that was made in late-April."We should've drafted Doug," Harbaugh said this week, in reference to Seattle Seahawks rookie wide receiver Doug Baldwin, who played for Harbaugh at Stanford."He's done a great job," Harbaugh said. "(I'm) proud of him."Receiver Ronald Johnson, a sixth-round pick from USC, is the lone 49ers pick whom the club cut and did not retain on the practice squad. The 49ers went with undrafted rookie Joe Hastings of Washburn on the practice squad, instead.
But the 49ers aren't the only team that missed on Baldwin, who was not among the 28 wide receivers drafted. Baldwin said this week that Harbaugh called him during the draft to inform him that the 49ers would not be able to select him. But Harbaugh told him that he was on their radar as an undrafted free agent.RELATED: Doug Baldwin 2011 game logs
However, Baldwin says the Seahawks were the first team to call him after the lockout. The Seahawks showed the most interest in him, and he decided it was his best fit.Baldwin leads the Seahawks with 46 catches for 731 yards. He is looking to become the first undrafted rookie to lead his team in both receptions and receiving yards since Bill Groman of the Houston Oilers in the AFL in 1960."I don't think we would've thought he'd be our leading receiver, but we were excited about getting him after the draft," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. "We had to fight a lot of teams that wanted him. He's been a really exiting player, not just catching ball but contributing on special teams, too."Baldwin caught a 55-yard touchdown pass against the 49ers in his NFL debut. In Week 14 against the St. Louis Rams, he became the first player to score a touchdown and block a punt in the same game since 2000 and was named NFC special teams player of the week.There might be some surprise that Baldwin is faring so well as a rookie, but Baldwin said he is not shocked that his old coach has been able to turn things around in San Francisco."I knew he'd come in with the same mentality," Baldwin said. "He has a lot of talent there in San Francisco. I'm not surprised because of the way he coaches and gets people to rally around him and buy into the program."I knew they would be successful. But I didn't think they'd be this far along in the process this early."

49ers scheduled to meet with Garrett, the likely No. 1 overall pick

49ers scheduled to meet with Garrett, the likely No. 1 overall pick

The 49ers have a visit scheduled with the presumptive top pick in the upcoming draft.

The 49ers, owners of the No. 2 overall selection, will visit with Texas A&M pass-rusher Myles Garrett, he told reporters Thursday at this pro day, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

General manager John Lynch attended Garrett's pro day workout in College Station, Texas.

"I thought it was impressive," Lynch told Wilson in a video posted on social media. "Here’s this kid who really doesn’t need to show everyone much more, but yet he shows up and runs a 40. I think it just speaks to the kind of kid he is. It was impressive. It’s well-documented – I’m not saying anything ground-breaking – he’s a special athlete.

"He checks all the boxes. That’s why people are talking about him in the way they are."

Garrett said he has upcoming visits with the 49ers and Chicago Bears.

Each NFL team is allowed to bring in 30 draft-eligible prospects from outside their area. The 49ers have their list of 30 prospects already finalized, Lynch said.

In addition, teams can visit with an unlimited number of local prospects. The 49ers’ local pro day -- featuring athletes from Stanford, Cal, San Jose State and prospects from the Bay Area who played college football elsewhere – is scheduled for April 12 in Santa Clara.

The Cleveland Browns hold the No. 1 overall pick, and coach Hue Jackson ruled out the possibility of the team trading that selection for a quarterback. Garrett is considered the overwhelming favorite to be chosen with the No. 1 overall selection.

"We're getting closer to it but the draft is the 27th (of April),'' Jackson said at the NFL owners meetings. "I think it's a little soon to really say it's this guy or that guy.”

Garrett (6 foot 4, 272 pounds) recorded 31 sacks and 47 tackles for loss during his three-year college career.

Kyle Shanahan: 49ers wide receiver Pierre Garcon plays angry

Kyle Shanahan: 49ers wide receiver Pierre Garcon plays angry

Among the players the 49ers first targeted for their rebuilding project is a wide receiver who has nine years of NFL experience and turns 31 early in training camp.

Coach Kyle Shanahan pinpointed Pierre Garçon to be his top addition at wide receiver. Garçon is coming off the second 1,000-yard season of his career. His career-best output came was his 113-catch, 1,346-yard season in 2014 with Shanahan as Washington's offensive coordinator.

“I’ve always loved Pierre just because of how angry he plays,” Shanahan said at the NFL owners meetings in Phoenix. “He gives you his all. He plays extremely aggressive. The best leaders are the guys who lead by example. Pierre’s not going to say much, but you know he’s going to go out there and fight every single play no matter what the situation is, whether it’s run or pass. That elevates everyone around him.”

Within the first two days of free agency, the 49ers signed Garçon, Marquise Goodwin and Aldrick Robinson. The 49ers had earlier signed slot receiver Jeremy Kerley to an extension, while not pursuing Quinton Patton, who signed a one-year deal with the New York Jets.

“You go into free agency and you study all the free agents who are available and then you stack them and see who can help you team the most,” Shanahan said. “Pierre was at the top of that list. Also knowing him made me feel better about that because you know exactly what you’re getting.

“But it all starts with the tape. It was very encouraging to turn on the tape and watch the level Pierre is still playing at. When you see that on tape and you also know the type the guy. I was very excited to get him.”