The most anticipated return for the San Francisco 49ers arrived on Tuesday, June 7.
Deebo Samuel, who for months either showed his disgruntled state with the franchise involving his contract then demanded a trade on the eve of the 2022 NFL Draft, is no longer a camp no-show — arriving for day one of the 49ers’ mandatory minicamp.
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Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network was first to report that Samuel would be walking into the 49ers’ Santa Clara practice facility — which came before 6 a.m. Pacific Time.
Samuel did indeed pull up to the 49ers’ facility…with a grand entrance.
Samuel’s Walk Fittingly Gets Accompanied by Stadium Anthem
Sure, it’s just a minicamp practice. Yet, Samuel’s reentrance into the 49ers’ facility came with a rock star type of vibe captured by David Lombardi of The Athletic.
Fittingly, one of the most popular rock songs played nationwide at stadiums including Levi’s blared through the speakers as Samuel walked in.
The widely popular stadium theme “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC was overheard blaring in the background. Samuel walked along the sidelines clad in a black 49ers practice shirt and shorts, a white long sleeved polo and a football in his hand — all caught by the 49ers’ insider Lombardi.
Samuel then began getting his legs loose by sprinting on the sidelines as the 1990 Billboard hit played.
Clearly, Samuel’s return came with a rock star kind of feel for the 49ers. Seems fitting that the legendary stadium track went through the speakers on the first day of the wide receiver’s 2022 return.
Was Samuel in a 49ers Helmet?
While Samuel made his reappearance and in 49ers attire, there was one notable equipment missing from the 2021 All-Pro: His helmet.
Every other 49ers player donned helmets except for Samuel, which was caught by The Athletic’s Matt Barrows.
Jack Hammer of the Santa Rosa Press Democrat captured another view of Samuel getting some sideline work in.
Then, the Twitter account for NBC Sports Bay Area filmed an up close and personal look at Samuel doing sprints on the side.
Samuel was held out of team-related drills in his practice return, which was also the return of prized defensive end Nick Bosa.
Like Samuel, Bosa is also up for a contract extension from his rookie deal he signed back in 2019. And in the case of Bosa, the record-setting deal the rival Los Angeles Rams rewarded their interior defensive lineman Aaron Donald on Monday could give the ‘Niners some leverage in putting together a similar deal, mentioned in this Heavy on 49ers story.
Also back in action for the 49ers? All-Pro left tackle Trent Williams.
Columnist Provides More Details on Samuel’s Practice Approach & Contract
Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area dove into further details of what happens next now that Samuel is practicing again with the ‘Niners.
Maiocco reported that Samuel arrived to the facility on Monday before being allowed to warm up on the sidelines the following day. The longtime 49ers reporter, though, isn’t anticipating that Samuel will be with the first team offense for the time being.
“It is not likely Samuel will participate in on-field practices, which are tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday,” Maiocco wrote in his report.
Maiocco then added the current contract details for Samuel, writing “He is scheduled to earn nearly $4 million, which is five or six times below his market value. The wide receiver market exploded this offseason with Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams, A.J. Brown and Stefon Diggs signing lucrative contracts.”
But now, “the next step is for the sides to agree on a new contract that makes it official.”