Over at MM's blog, he was discussing the chances of a deal sending disgruntled Miami Dolphin Jason Taylor to the 49ers. Based on Maiocco's estimations it does not seem likely, and I would certainly have to concur. Taylor is an aging veteran who has never won a Super Bowl and thus would probably want to go to a winner. That removes the 49ers from any short list, just based on that. However, let's take a look at Taylor anyways, just to see how he would fit in, what he would bring to the table, and really whether we want him if you factor in the short and long term ramifications.
Taylor could certainly bring a pass rush threat to the 49ers that has been missing for the last few years. While Taylor is most known for his production on the defensive line, he has been bumped out to outside linebacker when the Dolphins mix in 3-4 formations. If Taylor were to become a 49er, I would imagine he would take the place of Tully Banta-Cain in the 3-4 and split time between OLB and DE when the 4-3 was in play. TBC always seemed to perform better in New England when he was coming off the bench and since the 49ers didn't add an OLB in this draft, he'll remain as a starter for the foreseeable future. Scouts Inc. had the following to say about Taylor in their scouting report:
He generates deceptive strength with burst, pad level and hand jolt to get blockers off balance. Taylor uses his hands very well to gain leverage or disengage effectively. He can make moves and counters as a pass rusher and continue to gain ground . . . He has great speed, quickness and burst to chase plays down from the backside or close to the quarterback. He is slender and narrow hipped but he understands leverage, pad level and hand use to hold the point versus the run . . .He is extremely instinctive and anticipates well as plays unfold. He can drop in coverage and is effective as a short zone defender . . . Taylor has sustained his athleticism (speed, quickness, flexibility and agility) and it doesn't appear that he has lost much this late in his career.
Rumor has it the Dolphins turned down an offer involving a 4th round pick from an unnamed team. I remember hearing rumors saying they wanted a first rounder for Taylor, but I personally don't see that as a reasonable request. Taylor is obviously still a very solid and capable player. The problem is that he turns 34 the first week of the season and while he has maintained his play up till now, when the wheels do finally come off, it could get really ugly really quickly. Taylor is signed through 2009, so you're certainly not in danger of a one and done issue. For a team like the 49ers, if things worked out elsewhere on the team, 2009 could conceivably be the time they're making a true playoff push and have returned to being a contender. Or, if things haven't worked out, you've got a solid pass rusher on a mediocre team.
Well, first off, as I said at the beginning, I don't see this happening. I highly doubt Jason Taylor would want to come to a team coming off a 5-11 season. He would not appear to have any connections to the Bay Area that might make a deal more likely. The rumors that fly around have mentioned the Chargers and the Ravens as potential destinations. The Ravens are coming off a 5-11 year as well, so I'm not sure what connection would lead him to Baltimore. Either way, while I certainly would enjoy having a player of Jason Taylor's caliber in San Francisco, I definitely would not want to give up too much. If it takes more than a 4th round pick to land Taylor, I just don't know if it's worth it long term.