Jacob Cowing

Why ex-49ers GM McCloughan is impressed by draft pick Cowing

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The 49ers addressed their wide receiver need twice in the 2024 NFL Draft, selecting Florida star Ricky Pearsall at No. 31 in the first round and Arizona standout Jacob Cowing with the No. 135 pick in the fourth round.

While much of the attention, rightfully so, is on Pearsall and what he brings to the 49ers, former San Francisco general manager Scot McCloughan spoke to The Athletic's Matt Barrows about why he likes Cowing so much.

"Damn good football player," McCloughan told Barrows. "He's quick, fast. He's instinctive, he's competitive. He scored a lot of touchdowns, too, and can get down the field and go. He's cool. He's really, really cool."

As NBC Sports Bay Area's Matt Maiocco wrote shortly after the 49ers drafted Cowing, the 5-foot-8, 168-pound receiver has a chance to become San Francisco's primary return man and could be used in multi-receiver formations in Kyle Shanahan's offense.

The slender Cowing ran a 4.38 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine, showing off his incredible speed.

The 49ers will get their first look at Cowing's speed when he reports to Santa Clara on Thursday, May 9 for rookie minicamp, with the first practice scheduled for the following day.

McCloughan expects Cowing to turn heads when he steps on the practice field in the coming weeks.

"He'll tear up rookie minicamp, seven-on-seven, all that stuff," McCloughan told Barrows. "You'll be like, 'Wow!' you wait and see. He'll blow your mind. He's fast and quick. He's like a little bolt of lightning — gone!"

If McCloughan is right about Cowing, the 49ers will be very happy with the pick.

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