They looked poised to make another run at it in 2020, but the injury bug hit them really hard; they had no chance at contention without Nick bosa, Raheem Mostert, and Jimmy Garaoppolo.
Fortunately, for San Francisco, there is still hope.
They have a young talented roster and one of the brightest minds in football at the helm.
A few impactful off-season moves could make all the difference.
Also, getting Nick Bosa and your starting quarterback back from injury can’t hurt.
Here are 3 offseason moves the 49ers should make in 2021.
1. Trade for Deshaun Watson
If Deshaun Watson is made available, San Francisco should do anything they can to trade for Watson.
A franchise quarterback of his talent and age is priceless,
I would give up three first-rounders and two second-rounders for him without blinking an eye.
The Niners have one of the most complete rosters in the NFL and they have been drafting really well in later rounds.
Their time to win is now, and adding Watson would make them NFC favorites instantaneously.
Kyle Shanahan and Deshaun Watson on the same team will be one of the best head coach-quarterback duos in the league; they will be right up there with Rodgers and Lafleur and Mahomes and Reid.
Out of those three duos, San Francisco will easily have the best defense even without Saleh.
The return of Nick Bosa will be majorly impactful for them.
The next time someone as valuable as Watson becomes available probably won’t be during this decade.
The 49ers must take advantage of that opportunity.
Highest passer rating under pressure:
1. Justin Herbert – 99.4
2. Matthew Stafford – 91.8
3. Russell Wilson – 88.2
4. Deshaun Watson – 87.7 pic.twitter.com/A8fDn652rs
— PFF (@PFF) February 1, 2021
2. Sign Fred Warner to a long-term deal
Fred Warner is the heart and soul of San Francisco’s defense, especially with Robert Saleh leaving for his new head coaching job.
Both Saleh and Kyle Shanahan rave about Warner’s football IQ and leadership skills.
Those traits are rare to find in a player as young as Fred Warner; he does not turn 25 years-old until November.
His coverage ability as a linebacker is unparalleled; he can cover tight ends and running backs one on one as well as anyone else, and his zone coverage is a defensive coordinator’s dream.
Signing him this year is crucial because he will only grow more expensive the closer he gets to the expiration of his rookie contract.
He is one of the league’s best so he will be expensive and a long-term commitment but his blend of physical and mental traits are invaluable.
Now that Saleh is gone, Warner’s mind becomes even more valuable, and that will show next season, which would also drive his price up.
3. Re-sign Trent Williams
Trent Williams is one of the most underrated players in the league.
He is rarely mentioned when people talk about elite offensive linemen, but he may be the most well-rounded tackle in the entire league.
He is the best and most explosive run-blocker in the last five years, and is a premier pass protector even at age 32; he only gave up 19 pressures in 14 starts this past season.
This Trent Williams block is honestly one of the most impressive things I've seen on a football field. How the hell can a left tackle move that quickly? https://t.co/LJFr10iXPu
— Zack Cox (@ZackCoxNESN) September 14, 2020
He will be an expensive piece, but him sealing the edge for Mostert will be a nightmare for opposing defensive coordinators.