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Q&A with Niners Nation on Bryce Treggs signing as an UDFA

What are Niners fans thinking about UDFA WR Bryce Treggs?

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Let's be honest—some Cal fans find it tough to support the local San Francisco 49ers. They wear red. There's that alleged anti-Cal conspiracy. They passed on Aaron Rodgers. They became the Fightin' Harbaughs. But it's gonna be pretty hard not to root for them as long as they have one of the original #CalGang leaders on their roster—Bryce Treggs.

After signing Treggs as an undrafted free agent, we spoke with David Fucillo of Niners Nation about the four-year fan favorite.

1. How does the depth chart look at receiver? Is there a dire need to upgrade at that position or is your team pretty stacked?

David Fucillo (DF): The 49ers have a lot of question marks at wide receiver. The team did not re-sign Anquan Boldin, who has been their leading receiver the last few years. Torrey Smith is the most notable veteran on the team. After that, there are interesting players, but a lot of inexperience competing for the role. The issue for Treggs is that the 49ers have invested a decent amount of assets in these various players. Here are a few of them:

  • DeAndre Smelter: Drafted in the fourth round, but only slipped because of an ACL injury near the end of his last season at Georgia Tech. If he is fully recovered (as most believe right now), he has a good chance of competing for a starting role.
  • Eric Rogers: He led the CFL in most receiving categories last year and the 49ers gave him a decent amount of guaranteed money.
  • Quinton Patton/Bruce Ellington: The 49ers spent fourth-round picks on these two in 2013 and 2014. Ellington is the leading option as a returner, while Patton is getting first team WR reps. I think Ellington is more likely to make an impact than Patton, but they are among the most "experienced" of the 49ers receivers.

The 49ers have a handful of other guys competing for roles. Jerome Simpson is the most notable veteran and then they have several undrafted free agents they signed last year.

2. What kind of skill set do your coaches look for at wide receiver?

DF: The 49ers are implementing a new offense under new head coach Chip Kelly. In assessing what he did with the Eagles, it seems like size is something high on the wish list for receivers. Treggs measured in at 5'11, 190 at his Pro Day—that's certainly not big by NFL standards, but it's still decent weight for the size. Kelly wants strong blockers as the run game is very important—especially on the outside. And route-running is critical to Kelly, which means the ability to get physical as needed and get out of jams will be something to track.

3. What role does the receiver play in the Niners' scheme?

DF: The 49ers will obviously be plenty busy. I'm actually still getting a handle on what exactly Chip Kelly will be up to with the 49ers offense. He's not replicating everything from Oregon, but it's my understanding there's enough of it that Cal fans probably have a decent idea. It's been a few years, but I can't imagine they've forgotten about Chip Kelly! It sounds like there is some adjustability as the receivers run their routes. The big issue though is going to be who is actually throwing the receivers the ball. The 49ers could end up focusing more on their rushing attack to make up for potential deficiencies in the passing game. It's hard for us to really assess what is going on until the team actually gets into preseason and regular season games. One of my writers put together a Chip Kelly offensive resource page, and you're welcome to check out the passing game articles in the top section.

4. Have the fans had much of a response to signing Treggs or is he not even on most fans' radars? Does it help that he's a local product from Cal?

DF: Cal fans are definitely excited about him, so there's that subset of the fanbase. However, it's interesting to note that the 49ers' success in the 80s and 90s has led to a fairly geographically diverse fanbase. That means that while there are vocal Cal fans, they are not a huge subset of the fanbase. Well, I can't really speak for the entire fanbase, but that's what it seems like when we have discussions about college football.

5. What is your evaluation of Treggs?

DF: Honestly, it's mostly based on scouting reports I have read. It sounds like he would be suited for a slot receiver role in most offenses. The 49ers might go with someone a bit bigger in that role. He's getting work as a punt returner, but from what I see, he has not handled that role with Cal regularly since 2013. My guess is that he is competing with some of the 49ers' 2015 UDFAs for a spot on the practice squad.

6. Is there any early indication or do you have a guess if Treggs has a chance at making the Niners roster?

DF: My knowledge of Treggs is fairly limited, so you'll have to take this with the proverbial grain of salt, but I think they're fairly limited. I don't think he has zero chance, as the 49ers kept a UDFA wide receiver on their roster last year, but the numbers just don't seem to be in his favor with this current roster. Even with plenty of passing in the Chip Kelly offense, I think there are too many receivers ahead of him. I do think he's got a solid shot at a practice-squad spot.


Thanks to David for all the answers! Follow them on Twitter (@DavidFucillo and @NinersNation) and don't forget to root for Trigga.