Deebo changing from 49ers jersey No. 19 for next season

Deebo changing from 49ers jersey No. 19 for next season originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

The 49ers have turned the page on the 2023 NFL season, and so is Deebo Samuel, who will have a new jersey number when the 2024 campaign kicks off.

The All-Pro wide receiver posted on Instagram on Tuesday that he will wear No. 1 beginning next season after five years as No. 19.

The name on the back of his jersey also will be updated to "Samuel Sr." Tyshun Samuel Jr. was born in Dec. 2021.

The number change is a reboot for Samuel, who wore No. 1 at South Carolina, and at the Senior Bowl when he first met Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers' coaching staff.

When Samuel was drafted by the 49ers in 2019, single-digit numbers were not available to non-quarterbacks. Two seasons later, the NFL changed the policy opening up the possibility to wide receivers and defensive backs.

In 2021, Jimmie Ward claimed No. 1 because he had several seasons of experience over Samuel, wearing it until he left in free agency after the 2022 season. The safety, who now is with the Houston Texans, still wears the number with his new team, leaving it open for Samuel to claim.

No one wore No. 1 for the 49ers during the 2023 season.

Samuel played 15 games this past season, catching 60 of his 89 targets for 892 yards and seven touchdowns. The versatile wide receiver also was effective on the ground with 37 carries for 225 yards and five rushing touchdowns.

The “wide-back” might be hoping for a start fresh on a new season as the 49ers look to return to the Super Bowl. Samuel acknowledged CEO and owner Jed York, coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch for their efforts in keeping San Francisco's core group of players in the Bay Area for another run.

“That’s the ultimate goal,” Samuel said after the 49ers' Super Bowl LVIII loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. “Me, personally knowing Kyle, John and Jed, they are going to do their best to get everybody back that we can, and we will just get ready for next season when it comes.”

Until the 49ers reconvene in the Bay Area for the offseason program, Samuel will be dealing with the challenges of getting over the heartbreaking loss to the Chiefs.

“It’s kind of hard to put it behind,” Samuel said. “I just deal with it day by day. This one was real tough. This was a tough one.”

Following the 49ers' Super Bowl loss, Samuel gifted his teammates a special memento from the 2023 season -- signed No. 19 jerseys.

Now those keepsakes are collector's items with Samuel's change to No. 1.

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