The 49ers continue to have huge expectations for Dante Pettis as he enters his second NFL season. San Francisco's second-round pick of 2018 came on strong toward the end of his rookie campaign with 20 catches, 359 yards and four touchdowns coming in the final five games of the season. "We loved the way he closed this season," GM John Lynch said. "There's some maturation that I think is naturally going to come in terms of putting some girth on and some strength. I think this offseason is very important for him." Pettis was pretty sure-handed in 2018, only dropping two passes over the course of the whole regular season as he finished the year with 467 receiving yards and five touchdowns. Added strength and body mass will help make him more physical, durable and explosive in 2019 and beyond. More than that, the return of Jimmy Garoppolo should have a major impact as Pettis did his damage down the stretch with backup Nick Mullens under center.
Based on QB play alone, expecting an increase in production is reasonable although the addition of Deebo Samuel and Jalen Hurd (and the presence of heavily-targeted tight end George Kittle) could be limiting factors.
2019 Bottom Line
Even with the wide range of offensive talent (which extends through the running back position) that could cap his production, it's hard to view Pettis as anything but the de facto WR1 in San Francisco, at least until somebody else proves otherwise. Given his current price (as a fantasy WR4), there's upside to be had here if Pettis continues to progress.