The San Francisco 49ers wrapped up the 2017 season and have begun their work to prepare for 2018 free agency and the draft. We’ll be breaking down plenty of what that means, but in the meantime, we wanted to take a look back at the season that was for the 49ers. Jimmy Garoppolo capture our imagination, but the 49ers rebuilding process was extensive last year. We are going to take a look at every notable addition and provide a forum for grading how that signing, trade, or draft pick worked out.
Jeremy Zuttah, Center
How acquired: Trade: Swapped 6th-round picks with the Baltimore Ravens
I think I know how this one is going to go. The 49ers traded for Jeremy Zuttah, an accomplished center nearing the end of his career but one who certainly had more to offer than someone like Daniel Kilgore. He was 31 when the 49ers sent a sixth-round pick in exchange for him from the Baltimore Ravens.
On top of that, he was coming off a Pro Bowl season in 2016. He was supposed to be an immediate upgrade at center, but for some reason, he simply wasn’t fitting in to Kyle Shanahan’s scheme. He was eventually losing second-string snaps to Tim Barnes, and was released before the regular season.
The center position was still pretty bad for much of the season, and with Kilgore having a couple good games and some bad ones. Zuttah went on to re-sign with the Ravens, who released him less than a month later. He seems to have hit the aging veteran wall extremely quickly. He remains unsigned.
With the benefit of hindsight, the trade was obviously a bad one. But when it was made, the 49ers were trading for a capable center who was thought to be an immediate upgrade for what projected to be a shaky offensive line. We’ll never know how much the 49ers knew about Zuttah’s decline or whatever it was that led to him being released.
I have a feeling I know where this one is going to go, though.
How do you grade the Jeremy Zuttah trade?
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