Getting drafted ninth overall in the 2007 NFL Draft has been both a gift and a curse for Ted Ginn. The gifts have come in the form of money and chances. The curse? Constantly being judged against his draft position.
Ginn is not a good receiver, and he’ll never succeed in that area regardless of how what his father thinks. (In case you didn’t hear, Ted Ginn, Sr. said, “They don’t use him. He has to find a home.”) However, he was the only viable punt returner on the team after Kyle Williams suffered a torn ACL.
Ginn tested the market last year, and even though it appeared as if he might sign a contract with the Detroit Lions he ended up coming back to San Francisco on a one-year deal. If the market for Ginn was tepid last year after he finished with these stats…
- 38 punt returns for 466 yards (12.3 avg) and 1 TD
- 20 kickoff returns for 800 yards (27.6 avg) and 1 TD
- 19 receptions for 220 yards (11.6 avg)
- 8 rushes for 68 yards (8.5 avg)
- No fumbles
What offers can he possibly expect after numbers like these?
- 32 punt returns for 326 yards (10.2 avg) and 0 TD
- 11 kickoff returns for 253 yards (23.0 avg) and 0 TD
- 2 receptions for 1 yard (0.5 avg)
- 1 rush for 7 yards
- 4 fumbles
Not to mention Ginn’s role on the team’s worst play of the year — the way he let Janoris Jenkins pick up that errant pitch near the goal-line and score a touchdown in St. Louis. Sure, that was also the worst play call the 49ers have made since Jim Harbaugh and Greg Roman were hired and Colin Kaepernick never should have flung the ball in Ginn’s direction, but Ginn could’ve done something to either cover up the ball or knock it out of bounds; instead he let Jenkins steamroll him and looked like a contact-fearing ninny in the process.
While Ginn would probably come cheap in 2013, it’s time for the 49ers to look elsewhere for their punt returning needs. I’ve heard from a source that LaMichael James isn’t really keen on returning punts, partly because of the windy conditions at Candlestick. Fine, get someone else. Ginn is fragile, he wasn’t as explosive returning punts in 2012 as he was in the previous two seasons, he lost his job as a kickoff returner and he isn’t a viable wide receiver.
Also, if those comments from Ginn’s father are any indication, he doesn’t want to play in San Francisco anymore. If Trent Baalke can’t replace Ginn, something is wrong.