WR Deebo Samuel ‘hold in’ begins as contract talks continue

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49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel will be in the building, but not on the field when his team takes the field Wednesday for their opening training camp practice.

Instead, Samuel will be on a side field going through conditioning during practice as his contract extension talks continue, according to head coach Kyle Shanahan who spoke with reporters Wednesday morning.

This doesn’t come as a huge surprise. General manager John Lynch on Tuesday said the club and Samuel’s camp were in the midst of “substantive talks,” and both he and Shanahan expressed optimism a deal will eventually get done. Lynch did say nothing is imminent on that front though.

Still, Samuel’s participation in conditioning is another good sign as the frost between he and the 49ers continues to thaw. It’s not a huge deal if the veteran receiver misses a couple days of camp. The 49ers practice Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. It would start to be a problem if his hold-in bleeds into the second week of camp. He needs to get into the offense and start building a rapport with first-time starting quarterback Trey Lance.

Samuel’s contract is the second-biggest offseason box for the 49ers to check, only behind figuring out what to do with Jimmy Garoppolo. His holding in instead of holding out is a nice start, but the team has to close a deal and make sure their First-Team All-Pro receiver is on the field practicing as soon as possible.

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