Why 49ers Should Not Overlook Jaelen Strong


The San Francisco 49ers have a tremendous shot at finding a perfect complement to Anquan Boldin in the NFL Draft, but it is unsure how long this prospect will remain on the board.

This 6’2″, 217-pound collegiate stud has the size and speed, ran a 4.44 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, to add quite the weapon to Colin Kaepernick‘s arsenal. In 26 career games at Arizona State University, this wide receiver from Philadelphia caught 157 passes for 2,287 yards and 17 touchdowns.

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If you haven’t figured out who it is yet, his name is Jaelen Strong and yes, that is a pun on how strong his hands are. Strong has drawn comparisons to Kenny Britt, Dwayne Bowe, Marques Colston, and even Boldin himself.

Strong has a fantastic knack of making over-the-shoulder grabs along the sideline. He can elevate over any defender with ease thanks to his 42-inch vertical leap. He also has great route-running capabilities, and is great at re-adjusting himself to where the ball is to put himself in the best possible position to make big plays.

San Francisco has thrown their name in the hat as teams that are interested in the Biletnikoff Award semifinalist, but they do not stand alone. The Minnesota Vikings, Houston Texans, Kansas City Chiefs, Miami Dolphins, Cleveland Browns, Baltimore Ravens, New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks, and the Oakland Raiders have also expressed interest in Strong.

Some 49ers.com writers do not believe that the 49ers will take Strong, but when are the “experts” ever right?

Here is a quote from WalterFootball.com in regard to the Strong-49ers connection:

"The 49ers could use more young receiving talent given the age of Anquan Boldin and the hazy future of Michael Crabtree in San Francisco. Similarly, the Texans need a future No. 1 receiver to replace Andre Johnson."

Obviously this was written while Michael Crabtree was still with the 49ers, but now with Crabtree leaving for the Oakland Raiders, and Stevie Johnson going to the San Diego Chargers, the 49ers receiving corps has taken a major blow.

The 49ers front office thankfully went out and signed former Raven Torrey Smith and brought along Jerome Simpson, but neither are true long-term solutions for Kaepernick and the offense. Strong could very well be a major piece to help the 49ers climb out of the hole that is their offensive woes.

Strong grew up a 49ers fan, and what better way to improve your offense than by taking an NFL-ready wide receiver who has been a life-long fan of your team? Your move, Jed York.

Next: Will 49ers Strike Gold in Draft?