Why SS Jaquiski Tartt Will Likely Play Gunner Role In 2015


When the San Francisco 49ers drafted SS Jaquiski Tartt in the second-round (No. 46) of the 2015 NFL Draft, many Forever Faithful were scratching their heads. A small school kid from Samford who was projected to go in the third or fourth-round, it was the 49ers who took a gamble on him early on. Now the question remains, how will he fit into the safety rotation?

The team is already set on the backend with FS Eric Reid and SS Antoine Bethea so where does that leave Tartt? I believe special teams is his best bet in 2015.

If you remember last year the team cut ties with many of the team’s special-teams gunners including FS C.J. Spillman and CB Darryl Morris. And with S Bubba Ventrone now coaching the New England Patriots and WR Kassim Osgood likely not returning, makes Tartt a primary candidate to now relish that role.

Sure the team has S L.J. McCray but he did not standout as the team had hoped leaving them to select Tartt. A hard-hitter with no remorse for his body, Tartt can certainly lay the wood when given the opportunity. At 6-1, 221, I would be shocked if Tartt didn’t start the 2015 season as the primary gunner on special-teams.

Not only can Tartt hit but he has the football instincts to take the appropriate angles to track down ball carriers. Something you rarely see for an aggressive tackler as they often over-pursue, Tartt is a different breed as he knows how and when to cut down a runner.

With the 49ers looking to turn the page with a new head coach in Jim Tomsula, it will be interesting to see what roles the rookies will play as many positions are already set with seasoned veterans.

Ryan is the Founder/CEO of NinerFans.com, 49ers Beat Writer, Live Game Day Correspondent for Bleacher Report and member of Pro Football Writers of America. Born and raised in San Jose, he also graduated from San Diego State University. His work has been featured on NFL Network, 95.7 The Game, National Football Post, Sports Illustrated, FanSided Network, ESPN Radio, CBS Sports 810, and NBC Bay Area News. For more information, please contact him via email at ryan@NinerFans.com or call him at (408) 622-0996.