How LB Jalen Graham can carve out roster spot with 49ers

The 49ers have an open starting job at linebacker, and they selected two players at the position in this year’s draft. The second of those two, Pudue LB Jalen Graham, was their last pick at No. 255 overall. His path to the roster will likely be paved on special teams.

Graham has all the tools to be a terrific special teams player. He’s 6-2, 220 pounds and has plenty of functional athleticism to be effective in that phase. He’s relentless tracking down ball carriers and doesn’t often get hung up on blocks. Both of those characteristics should help him in kick coverage.

There’s a chance he fights for the open Sam LB spot, but he’ll have a steep hill to climb as one of the final LBs on the roster.

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If he can step in and help a kick coverage unit that’s struggled at times over the last few years though, he’d be an extremely valuable player for San Francisco.


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Story originally appeared on Niners Wire