Rumph to work against best
August 24 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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First round draft pick Mike Rumph has been tested all summer by one of the leagues premier receivers. Terrell Owens has been going full speed on Rumph to help the young defensive back pick up on the speed of football at the pro level. When the 49ers face the Raiders on Saturday, Rumph will face the master himself.
Jerry Rice, the best receiver to ever play the game of football crossed over the Bay last season to join the Oakland Raiders. It was Rice that helped Owens grow into the receiver he currently is. It was also Rice who helped starting cornerbacks Jason Webster and Ahmed Plummer grow into the players they are. And it will be Rice teaching Rumph a few lessons this Saturday.
When the 49ers receivers watch film to learn how to improve, receivers coach George Stewart pulls out film of Rice. When defensive backs study the games best receivers, they turn to footage of Jerry Rice. Mike Rumph has a good outing against the Cheifs and Broncos, knocking receivers out of bounds thereby taking them out of the play, but when he meets Jerry Rice this weekend itís doubtful heíll be able to repeat his performances.
Rumph will have to take Saturdayís game as a learning experience. It will no doubt be a tough one for him as he faces the master in Jerry Rice and another future hall of famer in Tim Brown. Itís important that Rumph not get discouraged by the outing and learn from it, because more than likely he will be burned a few times. That of course is expected when you face the master though. Rice has made a living by making defensive backs look foolish, it would take an all star performance from Rumph to change that.