Niners May Have Eyes on Georgia Wide Receiver

Beginning Tuesday, NFL coaches, front-office personnel and scouts will gather in Indianapolis for the NFL combine to get a look at the best prospects from college football.

For the 49ers, that will mean an intense focus on edge rushers such as Nick Bosa of Ohio State and Josh Allen of Kentucky. One of the two elite prospects will be there for the 49ers with the second selection of the first round.

When it comes to wide receivers – another need for San Francisco – gold will have to be found in the later rounds or through free agency.

One player who’s been linked to the 49ers as a possible Day 2 or Day 3 pick is Georgia wide receiver Riley Ridley.

Ridley, the younger brother of Falcons wideout Calvin Ridley, is coming off a junior season for the Bulldogs in which he caught 43 passes for 559 yards and nine touchdowns. At 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds, he’s a rugged receiver with good size for the pro game. draft analysts Daniel Jeremiah and Lance Zierlein believe Ridley might be a good fit for the 49ers offense, and a player who might put up better numbers as a pro than as a collegian.

“The Niners need another big target at wide receiver with size and toughness for Kyle Shanahan’s scheme,” they wrote. “Ridley’s college production was just OK, but there were plenty of mouths to feed in the Georgia offense. Ridley might be a fit for San Francisco as a Day 2 option, provided he shows ball-tracking ability and some route acumen in Indianapolis (at the combine).”

Ridley has strong hands and an ability to fight for the ball with defensive backs, and was dangerous after the catch. After all, he produced nine scores on just 43 receptions.

Ridley figures to go in Rounds 2 or 3, meaning the 49ers can get their edge rusher with their first pick and land a wide receiver such as Ridley later.


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