Brandon Aiyuk

San Francisco 49ers
Wide Receiver #11
San Francisco 49ers
Wide Receiver #11
Photo: Icon Sportswire

Brandon Aiyuk News

More targets sans Deebo?

Aiyuk should be key for the 49ers' passing game with fellow wide receiver Deebo Samuel (groin) ruled out for Sunday's contest in Seattle, Jerry McDonald of the Bay Area News Group reports.

Analysis: In addition to the opportunity for added targets, Aiyuk seems to be on the same page with coach Kyle Shanahan, both agreeing that the wideout has come a long way since he was reduced to a part-time role sharing snaps with Trent Sherfield early in the season. Samuel's absence for Week 13 (and possibly Week 14) leaves Aiyuk and TE George Kittle as the far-and-away top options for QB Jimmy Garoppolo, who has led the team to three straight wins while attempting 26 or fewer passes in each game. Aiyuk has done much better of late even with Samuel and Kittle competing for Garoppolo's attention, averaging 4.6 catches for 67.2 yards and 0.4 TDS on 6.4 targets in Weeks 8-12.

Dec 3, 2021 3:54 PM EST

Leading receiver in win

Aiyuk caught three of six targets for 91 yards in Sunday's 34-28 win over the Vikings.

Analysis: He also gained four rushing yards on one carry. Deebo Samuel (groin) was doing most of his damage out of the backfield, leaving Aiyuk to lead the Niners in receiving yards while setting a new season high in the category. If Samuel's injury proves to be serious, Aiyuk will take on an even bigger role in Week 13 against the Seahawks.

Nov 28, 2021 8:16 PM EST

Automatic on seven targets

Aiyuk caught seven passes for 85 yards and one touchdown on seven targets against Jacksonville on Sunday.

Analysis: Given the last month of improved production, it's hopefully safe to say by now that Aiyuk is free from whatever limitations he had to begin the year. While he can't always count on drawing seven of the team's 22 targets like he did here, and he especially can't count on catching every target that heads his way, Aiyuk's explosiveness speaks for itself on the field and play like what he showed Sunday will keep him involved in the San Francisco game plan. He's still probably third in line behind Deebo Samuel and George Kittle, but a Week 12 matchup against Minnesota is promising on paper.

Nov 21, 2021 1:44 PM EST

Makes three grabs

Aiyuk caught three of four targets for 26 yards in Monday night's 31-10 win over the Rams.

Analysis: Aiyuk didn't approach his production from last week's breakout, but he still showed his exciting after-the-catch ability with a 21-yard gain during the first half. With the Niners leading comfortably for the majority of Monday's contest, resulting in 44 rushing attempts, only tight end George Kittle saw more than five targets. Although San Francisco will strive to be similarly dominant in Week 11 versus Jacksonville, Aiyuk's matchup could enable him to make a bigger impact.

Nov 15, 2021 8:39 PM EST

Breaks out in Week 9 loss

Aiyuk caught six of eight targets for 89 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 31-17 loss to the Cardinals.

Analysis: It was by far the best performance of the year for Aiyuk, as he set season highs in catches, yards and targets while scoring his second TD of 2021 on an 11-yard strike from Jimmy Garoppolo in the third quarter. It's been a tough first half for Aiyuk, who had trouble getting out of Kyle Shanahan's doghouse and reclaiming a prime spot in the offense, but he'll take some well-earned momentum into a Week 10 clash with the Rams.

Nov 7, 2021 10:56 PM EST

Season-high 45 yards

Aiyuk had four receptions (seven targets) for 45 yards in Sunday's 33-22 win over the Bears.

Analysis: Aiyuk turned in his best performance of the season here in Week 8, which is more of a testament of how poorly the former first-round pick has performed this year, as opposed to a sign of things to come. With George Kittle (calf) targeting a Week 9 return, Aiyuk may see his targets reduced even further after setting a new season high of seven against Chicago. Aiyuk showed flashes of fantasy upside in his rookie campaign, so managers shouldn't write him off completely, but we need to see several weeks of useful production before recommending the wideout.

Oct 31, 2021 3:15 PM EST

Nearly invisible in start

Aiyuk started and was on the field for 40 offensive snaps (71 percent), but only finished with one reception (one target) for six yards in Sunday's 30-18 loss to the Colts.

Analysis: The 49ers are in desperate need of a second receiving threat behind Deebo Samuel (100 yards and a touchdown Sunday) while George Kittle (calf) mends on IR, but Aiyuk continues to provide little to no help despite getting significant playing time. The club tried explaining away the second-year wideout's struggles this year with a preseason injury, but he has been off the injury report for the last two games and had the recent bye week to rest up. Aiyuk is simply not getting the job done; and unlike the 49ers, fantasy managers have no incentive to wait around until he does.

Oct 25, 2021 1:28 PM EST

Quiet in Week 5

Aiyuk caught two of four targets for 32 yards against Arizona on Sunday.

Analysis: Aiyuk's four targets was a decent level of activity in a game where the 49ers attempted only 28 targeted passes, but it required George Kittle (calf) to sit out for Aiyuk to draw that usage. Deebo Samuel saw nine targets, and Aiyuk's four were tied by fullback Kyle Juszczyk. Aiyuk's strong rookie season and collegiate career give reason to believe in his talent, but for whatever reason the 49ers just haven't made him a central part of their offense through five games. Perhaps that will change after the bye -- San Francisco's 2-3 record is arguably reason for coach Kyle Shanahan to reconsider the current arrangement.

Oct 10, 2021 5:33 PM EST

Invisible again in Week 4

Aiyuk caught one of three targets for a 15-yard reception against Seattle on Sunday.

Analysis: Aiyuk's playing time picked up in recent weeks and he showed some flickers of production heading into Sunday, making this dud box score that much more disappointing. Deebo Samuel caught eight of 12 targets in the game and even Mohamed Sanu caught four of five targets, so the circumstances don't really explain Aiyuk's disappearance despite Jimmy Garoppolo (calf) leaving the game at halftime. Perhaps the 49ers will need to use Aiyuk more in Week 5, when they go on the road to face the division bully Arizona Cardinals.

Oct 3, 2021 5:12 PM EST

Scores on SNF

Aiyuk caught four of six targets for 37 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 30-28 loss to the Packers.

Analysis: Aiyuk finally posted a respectable stat line after ghosting fantasy managers for the first two games of the season (one reception for six yards over that span). Head coach Kyle Shanahan insisted that his wide receiver was being brought along slowly due to a preseason leg injury and not because he was in the dog house, despite the wideout never being listed on the injury report for the first three games of the season. Whatever the case may have been, this was the first game in which Aiyuk was truly treated as a starting receiver. It would still be tough to trust the 23-year-old next week against the Seahawks, but another positive outing could restore the fantasy value he squandered to begin the year.

Sep 26, 2021 11:40 PM EST

Starts, but does little

Aiyuk had one reception (two targets) for six yards in Sunday's 17-11 win over the Eagles.

Analysis: Aiyuk returned to starting opposite Deebo Samuel after falling to fourth on the depth chart in Week 1. The 2020 first-round pick logged 54 percent of offensive snaps after being limited to just 30 percent last game. Despite the increase in playing time, Aiyuk didn't get much attention offensively. Head coach Kyle Shanahan claimed that Aiyuk's role reduction was due to a lingering hamstring injury, but the wideout has been a full participant in practices for two weeks now. It is unclear when Aiyuk will exit the "doghouse" and return to a prominent role on San Francisco's offense, but fantasy managers should definitely wait to deploy him until we see some evidence that he is truly back.

Sep 20, 2021 2:45 PM EST

Needs more practice reps?

Coach Kyle Shanahan said Aiyuk should see more playing time moving forward, as long as he stays healthy and regularly participates in practice, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Shanahan has repeatedly mentioned the missed practice time when asked about Aiyuk splitting snaps with Trent Sherfield in Sunday's 41-33 win over the Lions. Most recently, Aiyuk was out for a couple weeks with a hamstring injury before returning to practice last week as a full participant Wednesday through Friday. It isn't clear if Sunday's part-time role was planned all along or not, but Aiyuk barely played in the first half (30 percent of snaps) before stepping up to 60 percent snap share after halftime. While it sounds like he'll play Week 2 at Philadelphia, it isn't clear iyuk will reclaim a full-time role. Coach Kyle Shanahan does seem fond of Sherfield, noting that Aiyuk needs to be "a lot better than the guy behind him" if he wants to return to an every-down role. Most fantasy managers took it for granted that Aiyuk was far ahead of Sherfield, but Shanahan said it wasn't a tough decision to give the latter more playing time, per Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle. In the meantime, WR Deebo Samuel and TE George Kittle will be the safest bets to see steady targets Sunday in Philadelphia.

Sep 15, 2021 1:11 PM EST

Fall in depth chart injury-related

Aiyuk (hamstring) -- who did not receive a target in Sunday's win over the Lions -- fell down the depth chart due to injury and not performance, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Aiyuk was a ghost in the box score in a game during which the 49ers put up 41 points. The dynamic wideout had been nursing a hamstring injury this preseason, and while he wasn't listed on the pregame injury report, head coach Kyle Shanahan's explanation solves the mystery of why the 2020 first-round pick was not used. The rest of San Francisco's receiving corps excelled in their individual roles Sunday, but we have to assume that a talent like Aiyuk will reclaim his co-starting role alongside Deebo Samuel when he is fully healthy. For now, consider the wideout questionable heading into a Week 2 matchup against the Eagles until more information is given following practices this week.

Sep 12, 2021 2:57 PM EST

Makes full showing Wednesday

Aiyuk (hamstring) practiced fully Wednesday, Keiana Martin of the 49ers' official site reports.

Analysis: Aiyuk was limited to just one appearance during exhibition season, gathering in one of three passes for three yards Aug. 22 versus the Chargers. Thereafter, a hamstring injury has been bothering him, but it's apparently dissipated enough for him to partake in all drills in the first practice of Week 1. Aiyuk will pair with Deebo Samuel to serve as the top two wide receivers in San Francisco's offense in the coming campaign.

Sep 8, 2021 3:45 PM EST

Running routes Monday

Aiyuk (hamstring) ran routes and caught passes during the part of Monday's practice open to the media, Nick Wagoner of reports.

Analysis: Aiyuk didn't suit up for the 49ers' exhibition finale due to a minor hamstring issue. Prior to that, he made just one appearance in the preseason, hauling in one of three targets for three yards Aug. 22 against the Chargers. Last Thursday, Aiyuk was spotted running sprints on a side field, and he now has progressed enough to be a participant in practice. The 49ers will post their first Week 1 injury report Wednesday, at which point his status in advance of the opener will become more clear.

Sep 6, 2021 11:36 AM EST

Looking good on side field

Aiyuk (hamstring) looked unencumbered while running sprints on a side field Thursday, and he's on track to be a full-go Week 1 at Detroit, Michael-Shawn Dugar of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Aiyuk has been out for about a week now, after catching one pass for three yards in San Francisco's second preseason game (his only appearance this August). A return to practice should be coming at some point within the next week, as the 49ers maintain that Aiyuk's hamstring injury is minor.

Sep 2, 2021 12:04 PM EST

No activity Wednesday

Aiyuk (hamstring) didn't take part of the part of Wednesday's practice open to the media, Nick Wagoner of reports.

Analysis: Aiyuk made just one appearance during exhibition season, gathering in one of three targets for three yards in preseason Week 2 against the Chargers. Since then, he picked up a minor hamstring injury that kept him out of the 49ers' finale and recent practices. There doesn't seem to be too much worry about his ability to be ready for Week 1 at Detroit. but his status nonetheless will be monitored over the next week and a half.

Sep 1, 2021 3:43 PM EST

Minor hamstring injury

Aiyuk is dealing with what's being described as a slight hamstring issue, Nick Wagoner of reports.

Analysis: As a result, Aiyuk won't play in Sunday's preseason finale versus the Raiders. However, the 49ers' starting wideout is expected to be fine by next week, according to coach Kyle Shanahan. Assuming that's the case, Aiyuk's Week 1 status is not in any jeopardy.

Aug 27, 2021 1:52 PM EST

Secures catch in preseason debut

Aiyuk caught one of three targets for three yards in Sunday's 15-10 preseason win over the Chargers.

Analysis: Aiyuk made his 2021 preseason debut after sitting out last week's contest with most of the other starters. Both of his missed targets were the result of inaccurate passes from both of his quarterbacks. The 49ers' first-round pick from a year ago hasn't had a ton of on-field experience with either Jimmy Garoppolo or rookie Trey Lance, so any experience they accrue together this preseason will be beneficial. Expect Aiyuk and the rest of the starters to get a little more run in next Sunday's "dress rehearsal" against the Raiders.

Aug 22, 2021 8:25 PM EST

Returns healthy for camp

Aiyuk (groin) made a number of catches Wednesday during the first practice of training camp, Chris Biderman of The Sacramento Bee reports.

Analysis: He's apparently recovered from the minor groin injury that held him out of OTAs, with Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle also noting that Aiyuk had a great practice Wednesday. The second-year pro is locked in as a starter and foundational piece in San Francisco, competing for targets with WR Deebo Samuel and TE George Kittle in an offense that should have a tight distribution. Coach Kyle Shanahan has made multiple comments in support of QB Jimmy Garoppolo, but it's nonetheless possible Aiyuk ends up catching passes from rookie Trey Lance at some point this year.

Jul 28, 2021 12:48 PM EST

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