With the San Francisco 49ers making waves with the big splash signing of DE Darnell Dockett, it should be noted that another player was signed by the team today in six-year veteran WR Jerome Simpson.
Originally a second-round draft pick (No. 46) of the 2008 NFL draft, Simpson has since been somewhat of a disappointment since entering the league.
In 2012, Simpson was arrested and sentenced to 15 days in jail for having two and half pounds of pot mailed to his residence. (The street value on that kind of ganja is near $20,000)
In addition, Simpson was arrested in 2013 on suspicion of DWI while later pleading guilty to careless driving and refusal to submit to a sobriety test. Shortly thereafter he was cited for violating a limited license, marijuana possession and open bottle after being pulled over in a traffic stop in Minnesota according to Sacramento Bee’s Matt Barrows.
But aside from Simpson’s troubled off-field behavior, he does have speed. And that’s exactly what 49ers GM Trent Baalke is looking for in 2015.
At 6-2, 199 pounds, Simpson has the quick-twitch muscle fibers to explode off the line with his blazing 4.42 40-yard dash speed. And despite Simpson not playing a single down in 2014 it should be noted that he did have a breakout campaign in 2013 with the Minnesota Vikings–his last season in the NFL.
During that season, Simpson recorded career-highs in receiving yards (726), yards per catch (15.1), and first-downs (35).
A player that can stretch the field from time-to-time while making the acrobatic catch as he high-points the ball makes Simpson a bargain signing with starter potential. But don’t think for a second his spot is guaranteed as other wide-receivers are poised for breakout campaigns such as WR Bruce Ellington and WR Quinton Patton.
With Simpson now in San Francisco he will need to prove his worth as the wide-receiver position will be one of the hottest camp battles to watch.