Samuel put together a solid rookie season, catching 57 passes for 802 yards and three touchdowns in 15 games.
Before he could build on that momentum in 2020, the former South Carolina star suffered a Jones fracture in his left foot while working out with teammates in June. San Francisco placed Samuel on injured reserve ahead of its season opener, which meant he'd miss at least the first three games.
The receiving corps has been a troublesome spot for San Francisco. The problem remains despite the team selecting four wideouts in the third round or earlier (Samuel, Jalen Hurd, Dante Pettis and Brandon Aiyuk) over the past three years.
Injuries have been the biggest reason. Samuel had the aforementioned Jones fracture. Hurd has yet to appear in a game after missing his entire rookie season and then suffering a torn ACL this past offseason. A hamstring injury delayed Aiyuk's NFL debut.
Samuel's return will be a welcomed addition for a San Francisco squad that has been riddled by injuries early on this season. Jimmy Garoppolo (ankle), George Kittle (knee), Nick Bosa (torn ACL) and Solomon Thomas (torn ACL) are among the players who missed Week 3 because of injury.