49ers To Sign Jerick McKinnon

Oct 8 2017 Detroit MI USA Detroit Lions tight end Darren Fells runs after a catch for a touchdown against Carolina Panthers outside linebacker Shaq Green Thompson during the fourth quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit Raj Mehta-USA TODA

General manager John Lynch said McKinnon and Richburg were both high on the team's priority list in free agency and he was glad to be able to lock both of them up as soon as the new league year started. His athleticism, intelligence and attitude are a ideal fit for our scheme.

The San Francisco 49ers have agreed to a four-year deal with free-agent running back Jerick McKinnon, according to multiple reports. Jerick has proven to be an extremely versatile football player whose speed, elusiveness and tackle-breaking ability make him a very hard matchup for defenses. But we'll get to that. But the 49ers' deal for four years, $30 million was not a price tag Big Blue could afford to offer. McKinnon finished the season with 991 yards from scrimmage and five total touchdowns. He also saw action in two postseason contests and recorded 18 carries for 74 yards and one touchdown as well as 14 receptions for 92 yards.

Richburg (6-4, 300) was originally drafted by the New York Giants in the second round (43 overall) of the 2014 NFL Draft. He played there the past three seasons and is considered one of the top pass-blocking players at the position and has the athleticism to thrive in Shanahan's zone-running scheme.

As the lead back in San Francisco, it's reasonable to expect and uptick from the roughly 12.5 touches per game he's averaged over the last two seasons, but we're unlikely to see him approach the 20-touch range.

He joins QB Jimmy Garoppolo, who the 49ers traded for last season and signed to a megadeal in the offseason, in a revamped 49ers offense.

However, deals brokered by 49ers chief negotiator Paraag Marathe - notorious for his team-friendly contracts - are never as simple as early reports indicate. But he's a solid option out of the backfield that can also help in the passing game.



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