Deebo Samuel

Shanahan shares what makes Deebo ‘different' from other receivers

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Deebo Samuel came out to play in the 49ers' Week 13 win over the Philadelphia Eagles, showcasing why he's one of the most dynamic wide receivers in the NFL with a three-touchdown performance.

His coach, Kyle Shanahan, recently explained what makes Samuel so effective with the ball in his hands on the latest episode of "49ers Game Plan," when Greg Papa asked him to break down one of the "wide back's" improbable touchdowns against the Eagles.

Per Next Gen Stats, Samuel had just a 0.1-percent chance of scoring on the play.

"That's what makes Deebo different," Shanahan told Papa. "First of all, to have a linebacker hit you like that and to bounce off him like he does everybody, I mean, it's just different to have the base that Deebo has, the hips, the width of his body, it's not built like a normal receiver.

"And that's what his advantage is in situations like that, but people like that can't go zero to 100 as fast as he does. The way Deebo does it, when he gets that and has a direct line where he can go across the court, as we'll say, it's rarely not to the house."

Samuel's physicality and ability to absorb hits have him near the top of the YAC leaderboards year in and year out, and if he has a lane to the end zone -- clear or not -- he's going to take it.

"That's why I'll joke in training camp. I'll always pause it and be like, 'This is my goal in life, is to get Deebo right here in this situation,' " Shanahan continued. "And I say it sarcastically, but also it's kind of true because if we do get him in those situations, he's just different."

All Samuel needs is a chance, and sometimes, the offensive line makes his work much easier up front. A wall of blockers made way for Samuel's third touchdown of the game and allowed him to showcase that deceptive speed Shanahan spoke of.

To the offensive-minded 49ers coach, it was a thing of beauty.

"It was perfect, because I didn't feel like it was bad defense, either," Shanahan told Papa. "I mean, they were still right there, but the wave of the line win and the way Brock [Purdy] threw the ball and Deebo could attack it anywhere right on the wave ...

"When Deebo's in that situation, what I said earlier, it's kind of the goal in life because that's the right dude who you want there. Because it's not going to be an explosive -- it's going to be a touchdown."

San Francisco has a bevy of offensive weapons at its disposal, from running back Christian McCaffrey to tight end George Kittle to wideout Brandon Aiyuk -- the list goes on. But Samuel definitely is different, and the 49ers are at their best when their versatile receiver is on the field.

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