The San Francisco 49ers are lacking a slot wide receiver.
Quite surprisingly, they elected to forgo a receiver in the draft. That is the first time they did not draft once since Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch took over.
It does make sense, however, that they decided not to take a receiver. It is their most invested position in draft capital, so at some point they have to start developing the guys they already have now. Until then, the 49ers will be without a wide receiver that can act there until it is proven someone can step up.
There is one 49ers player who can immediately contribute at slot receiver.
That player is fullback Kyle Juszczyk. Though a fullback by position, anyone that watches the 49ers understands that he is simply an offensive weapon. He can do many things in the offense and at a high level. One of those things is operating from the slot. That is something that Juszczyk did not get to put on display much in 2020.
That should definitely change in 2021 now that the 49ers do not have someone who can immediately contribute there. It also helps that Juszczyk is best friends with offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel, so surely that should have an impact on the increase of usage of getting him the ball. In 2019, Jimmy Garoppolo registered a passer rating of 116.7 when targeting Juszczyk out of the slot, per Pro Football Focus.
The guy can definitely produce from there. Now I am not saying to keep him there or have him be the only player that can be utilized there. Until someone can take that slot receiver role, Shanahan is surely going to platoon that area with a mix of players. Juszczyk should be one of those players as he has proven to excel there and make an impact.