The 2018 offseason is coming to a close and the San Francisco 49ers will finally report to training camp on Wednesday. Before training camp, the 49ers were very active in the offseason, be it free agency, getting extensions done for their existing players, and putting together their rookie class of draft picks and undrafted free agents.
There’s a few highlights; the extension of Jimmy Garoppolo comes to mind, but there’s also the extension of Marquise Goodwin and the signing of Richard Sherman. ESPN recently listed the most important move of the offseason for each team and listed the Garoppolo extension as the move for the 49ers:
The Niners made some other big moves this offseason, but nothing mattered more than nailing down their franchise quarterback for the long haul. Not only did the 49ers hand Garoppolo a five-year, $137.5 million contract, but they did it in February, assuring that there was no need to play the franchise tag game and providing themselves with defined costs at the game’s most important position. That cost certainty allowed San Francisco to add the likes of cornerback Richard Sherman, running back Jerick McKinnon and center Weston Richburg in free agency while still maintaining plenty of cap flexibility for future offseason roster moves.
It’s hard to argue against the Garoppolo extension as the most important move. While I suggested the 49ers needed to extend Goodwin sooner rather than later, and saw the Richard Sherman signing as clearing up a spot in the draft to go for another position, they don’t come close to getting Garoppolo signed. When you see a franchise quarterback that you think can work in your system, you go get them, no questions asked. While the contract was a bit much to some’s liking, I think it was a good deal as well and it was only going to get worse as time went on.
As much as I like the Sherman move, we still don’t know how his rehab is progressing and how he’ll look come September. It’s a great signing if all works out, but keep in mind, that signing might not have happened if the 49ers didn’t get Garoppolo locked down. Sherman has said just as much.
Beyond Sherman, getting Goodwin extended was a crucial move, both financial and production reasons. Goodwin had a great 2017 season and was going to be hitting a contract year. If he produced anything like 2017, that deal the 49ers gave him could have cost more money
Looking back on the 2018 offseason, what do you think was the most important move the 49ers made, other than extending Jimmy Garoppolo?