The 49ers don't have much this season, but at least they can boast that their tight end is smarter than your tight end.

Eric Johnson, a seventh-round draft pick from Yale in the 2001 draft, is having a breakout year. His 46 catches by far lead the 49ers and rank tied for fifth in the league, and he's looking to become the first tight end to lead the team in receptions since Ted Kwalick in 1973. A tight end has not led the league in receptions since Todd Christensen hauled in 95 in 1986.

Johnson is probably one of the best players to come out of the Ivy League. Against Harvard in 1999, Johnson caught a then-record 21 passes (16 in the second half), including a four-yard touchdown catch late to give the Elis the win and a share of the Ivy title. His 14 touchdown catches in 2000 is second all-time in conference history, and his 86 overall receptions rank seventh all-time. He broke 11 school receiving records.

Johnson also was called upon to punt at times and spent his offseasons on the Yale golf team.

The 25th Yalie to start an NFL game over the past 79 years, Johnson attributes his flexibility to a unusual source: yoga.

JOHNSON