49ers’ Deebo Samuel Makes Revealing Admission That Impacted His Draft Stock

Deebo Samuel

Getty Deebo Samuel runs after the catch on September 16, 2017 while with South Carolina.

As dynamic and dominant Deebo Samuel has been so far in his career with the San Francisco 49ers, it becomes easy to forget he wasn’t even selected in the first round.

However, Samuel revealed a telling admission in reflecting back to his 2019 NFL draft process.

In his appearance on Cold as Balls from the LOL Network on Tuesday, April 25 with actor and comedian Kevin Hart, Samuel remembered one moment that shifted the course of his draft status.

“Crazy story: The Senior Bowl, I’m going back and forth with my agent about whether if we’re going or not. Because, in my five years at South Carolina, I had played like in 27 games due to injuries. So I’m like ‘You know what bro? I ain’t going,'” Samuel first told Hart.

Samuel had battled a bad hamstring and then a leg fibula fracture while in Columbus, South Carolina.

“Let’s just try to prepare for the combine and try to prevent everything from being hurt,” Samuel told his agent in reflecting back at that story with Hart.

However, there was a change of heart that Samuel revealed to Hart.

“Something hit me two days before the Senior Bowl. And I called my agent and said, ‘Yo, we about to go tear this senior bowl up,'” Samuel said. “Then went out there and put on a show.”

Samuel went on to earn Practice Player of the Week on offense while delivering a stock boosting moment for his pre-NFL career.

Perhaps Samuel would’ve gone much lower than No. 36 had it not been for his gutsy last minute call to strap up the pads in Mobile, Alabama with NFL scouts watching.

Teams That Passed on Deebo Samuel are Led by Super Bowl-Winning Coaches

Again, Samuel fell to the second round amid injury concerns and witnessed 35 selections before he heard his name called.

However, with an All-Pro appearance and becoming one of the focal points of both the 49ers’ air and ground attack, his production has began to make two Super Bowl-winning franchises look foolish in passing on him. The two teams that passed over Samuel were:

Ravens: Head coach John Harbaugh, the Super Bowl 47 winning coach, decided on Marquise “Hollywood” Brown as his first draft selection and become the new weapon for their young quarterback Lamar Jackson. The Oklahoma Sooner showed some early promise in Charm City with improving his receptions and yardage total each season — including hitting 91 catches for 1,008 yards in 2021. However, Brown was a draft trade one year ago and his production dipped to 67 catches, 709 yards and three touchdowns with the Arizona Cardinals.

Patriots: Rare that Bill Belichick makes a draft day blunder. After all, he brought in Tom Brady, Vince Wilfork, Logan Mankins and Rob Gronkowski through the month of April. But he made a glaring mistake taking N’Keal Harry over Samuel. The towering Harry never hit past 33 catches or topped 310 receiving yards in each season with the Pats. Harry has also managed 12 total receptions twice in a season. The Arizona State Sun Devil remains unsigned.

Could There be Help for Deebo Samuel in the Draft’s Final Days?

Now, Samuel is gaining new teammates on the 49ers starting on Friday, April 28. But will one of them join him in the wide receiver room?

Talks are heating up involving nearby prospect Elijah Higgins out of Stanford. NFL insider Aaron Wilson of NBC 2 Houston reported the franchise has been in “heavy” talks with the towering 6-foot-3, 235-pounder. Higgins was lined up as an oversized wide receiver, including lining up at the slot on occasion in Palo Alto. However, Higgins is considered a potential future tight end given his impressive frame.

Meanwhile, Matt Miller of ESPN has the 49ers staying with the theme of towering height — but taking Andrei Iosivas out of Princeton at No. 173. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound Ivy League star has blossomed into a potential late-rounder with his combination of height, 4.43 speed in the 40-yard dash and coming equipped with leaping ability.

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