The San Francisco 49ers are officially into the offseason following a 2018 season that did not meet expectations. The team entered with hopes of contending for a playoff appearance, but stumbled to a 4-12 record after losing quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to a torn ACL in Week 3.
Expectations will climb again in 2019, but before we get into that, it’s time to take a look back at the season that was for the current roster. There will be turnover in the coming months, but I thought we’d start the offseason with a stock report on the roster. We’ll go through each position group and offer stock up or stock down for each player, and then stock up or stock down for the position group as a whole.
Jimmy Garoppolo: Stock down
You tear your ACL in Week 3, your stock is going to go down. His knowledge of the offense will have improved, but he officially becomes a question mark for 2019. He appears to be on pace to throw during the offseason workout program, and should be good to go for the start of the season, but he will be a question mark until we see him back in action.
C.J. Beathard: Stock down
He got his second shot at starting after Garoppolo’s injury, and things went south. He had some solid work in near-upsets of the Chargers and Packers, but he was a turnover machine, whether it be interceptions or strip sacks. He eventually injured his right wrist and was replaced by Nick Mullens for the second half of the season. Mullens put together some impressive performances and very well could bump Beathard off the roster this offseason.
Nick Mullens: Stock up
The 49ers found themselves a diamond in the rough with the 2017 UDFA. He put up one of the best debut performances in NFL history against the Raiders. He struggled at times, with a particularly rough game against the Buccaneers. But he helped lead the 49ers to a two-game win streak that included snapping a ten-game losing streak to the Seahawks. He lacks the arm strength of Jimmy Garoppolo, but his pocket presence and general awareness seems better than Beathard. He would seem to have done enough to earn the backup job, but we’ll see how long the 49ers take to decide between him and Beathard.
Overall position: Stock slightly down
This was a tough one to figure out given the biggest name on the depth chart is stock down. The torn ACL is a huge issue, but on the other hand, they appear to have found a capable backup they could slot in for the next couple years. I was leaning stock slightly up, but it’s hard to do that given Garoppolo’s injury and the expectations surrounding him coming into the season. If Mullens had not emerged this would be way down, but considering the injury to Garoppolo, we could have walked away from 2018 thinking it had been that much worse.