The list of things the San Francisco 49ers need to address this offseason is pretty standard wherever you look. They need a wide receiver, they need to figure out who is starting at left guard or center, they've got to figure out what's happening with Justin Smith and Frank Gore and they have to figure out which cornerback they're going to be able to bring back.
If you take a look over at NFL.com's offseason forecast, most of these things are here as well. But there are a couple things I thought were particularly interesting -- there's always one or two when the national media is concerned. Obviously, most of us here have a pretty good handle on the 49ers and their needs, more so than someone who covers the whole league. But as to what's interesting ...
They say that re-signing Gore and Iupati both is "paramount" is the 49ers "want to return to their ground-and-pound identity." Of course, they then go on to say that Iupati is "as good as gone," so it sounds like the 49ers are just about doomed in their mind, eh?
The other thing I thought was interesting is that they list cornerback Chris Culliver as one of the players potentially on his way out. But rather than suggest that the 49ers should re-sign Culliver, they say that the 49ers "need to upgrade the most fragile part of their defense, which most likely means Culliver's days at cornerback are numbered."
I thought this was odd, because I felt like the 49ers cornerbacks were actually a strength for much of the season, despite the multitude of injuries. Sure, Jimmie Ward couldn't contain Brandon Marshall (and yet the 49ers kept him on him for some reason) and late in the season there were guys signed off the street out there, but despite that it wasn't even close to the weakest position on the 49ers.
On top of that, I think Culliver has been pretty impressive thus far with the 49ers. He's had his injuries, and could draw interest from other teams which I think could lead to someone like Perrish Cox getting the nod instead but I doubt Culliver goes elsewhere because the 49ers think he's not up to the task of starting.
"One thing is for sure: expect a lot of new faces in San Francisco in 2015," is how the piece closes. Interesting!