Published: Thu, March 15, 2018
Markets | By Rosalie Gross

49ers make Jerick McKinnon the 4th-highest paid running back in NFL

49ers make Jerick McKinnon the 4th-highest paid running back in NFL

McKinnon's versatility and ability to catch the ball out of the backfield make him a nice fit with San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan's offensive philosophy.

These moves have addressed numerous team's most glaring needs although San Francisco still could be in the market for another cornerback, a pass rusher, help at linebacker and a big receiving target. He began his career as a left guard before moving to center in 2015. He allowed just four sacks in his four seasons with the Giants and earned top-five pass blocking grades from Pro Football Focus over his past two campaigns.

Drafted in the 3rd-round of the 2014 draft, the Georgia Southern grad impressed as rookie. Early on Wednesday, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that the 49ers will sign the 25-year-old RB - formerly of the Minnesota Vikings - to a four-year deal worth up to $30 million. From Week 5 on, McKinnon averaged 3.9 yards per rush, gaining 544 yards on 140 carries while catching 43 passes for 381 yards.

More news: Nicolas Cage Voices Superman in New 'Teen Titans' Movie

McKinnon excels in the passing game, where Hyde struggled despite leading the team in receptions last season. He also might not have achieved those numbers if not for an injury to Dalvin Cook. But the 49ers will platoon at the position - and McKinnon is almost the same size as Atlanta's Devonta Freeman, who logged 2,135 yards rushing and 22 touchdowns in two seasons with Kyle Shanahan as his offensive coordinator.

It appears as though McKinnon may have found that bigger role he was talking about a couple of months back.

The need for McKinnon arose for the 49ers with fellow running back Carlos Hyde expected to agree to a three-year deal with the Cleveland Browns.

Like this: