The San Francisco 49ers are entertaining high hopes this season, with prognosticators as well as their own locker room effectively shooting for the moon.
Offseason acquisition Jerick McKinnon said “the whole team” has talked about the Super Bowl in a recent conversation with NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco.
“The Super Bowl. That’s what the eyes are on,” the 5-foot-9 McKinnon said. “That’s the prize. That’s the ultimate goal.”
While it’s not a shock that optimism tends to be at an all-time high for any team in the offseason, McKinnon said it’s a feeling that has permeated throughout the locker room.
“The whole team has talked about it,” McKinnon said. “We had a thing with the Navy SEALS. They were asking us, ‘What’s the goal?’ It was equally collaborated on: ‘Win the Super Bowl.'”
McKinnon, who has 14 career starts, spent four seasons with the Minnesota Vikings playing behind Adrian Peterson — and then Dalvin Cook and Latavius Murray.
The 26-year-old McKinnon recorded 1,918 yards rushing with seven touchdowns while adding 142 receptions for 984 yards and five scores in 58 games with the Vikings.
The need for McKinnon arose for the 49ers with fellow running back Carlos Hyde signing a three-year deal with the Cleveland Browns. Hyde, who played collegiately at Ohio State, rushed 240 times for 938 yards and eight touchdowns last season and also reeled in a career-high 59 receptions for 350 yards.