Brandon Aiyuk

Why Juice believes Aiyuk will top breakout season in 2023

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Brandon Aiyuk is one of multiple 49ers offensive weapons who could be in store for a big 2023 NFL season.

Selected by San Francisco in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, Aiyuk had a breakout campaign in 2022, catching 78 passes for 1,015 receiving yards and eight touchdowns in 17 games last season.

Aiyuk's teammate, 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk, appeared on the latest episode of "The Haberman and Middlekauff Podcast," where he discussed what he has seen from Aiyuk this offseason and why he believes the 25-year-old will improve upon his breakout season.

"At the end of OTAs, he's ready to take off and you can see it," Juszczyk said. "There are people when we're at practice, they just stand out and he's 100 percent been that guy for a little bit now, but especially in OTAs. You talk about Christian [McCaffrey] practicing hard, Aiyuk is in that exact same category.

"When he is out there, he is an ass-kicker. He wants all the smoke, he's going to talk all the trash to all the defensive backs and he's going to back it up. He looked like he was moving at a different speed than everyone else on the field, so I think he's in store for an even bigger season this year."

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Aiyuk led the 49ers in just about every receiving category in 2022, leapfrogging veteran teammate Deebo Samuel, who broke out for 1,405 receiving yards one season prior. Samuel described his underwhelming 2022 season as "awful" and anticipates a better 2023 campaign.

However, with Aiyuk's ascension to the top of the depth chart, the 49ers might have some competition for WR1.

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