USC wide receiver Ronald Johnson has a track record with the 49ers coaching staff, having worked with wide receivers coach John Morton for his entire collegiate career.
The two spent four seasons together at USC, which ultimately gave the 49ers the knowledge and comfort in making Johnson a sixth-round selection in the 2011 NFL Draft.
Familiarity, along with Johnson’s value as a receiver and punt returner, made him an easy choice with the 182nd overall selection.
“We didn’t think he’d last as long as he did,” general manager Trent Baalke noted at his review of the 2011 draft class. “We got good value where we drafted him.”
In Johnson, the 49ers added a 5-foot-11, 199 pound wide receiver who can play in the slot and line up at the team’s “z” position. Johnson also averaged 14.2 yards on 22 punt returns with one touchdown as a senior.
“He’s a guy we can throw into the mix and let him compete with the guys we have now,” Baalke added.
After hearing Morton’s high opinion of Johnson, the 49ers were set on drafting a receiver who they deemed too valuable to pass up.
Thursday on Goal Posts, we’ll cover Baalke’s comments on TCU safety Colin Jones and former UCF defensive end Bruce Miller, who will be converted to fullback with the 49ers.
Tags: Ronald Johnson, Trent Baalke
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