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Should the 49ers keep, cut, or trade Marquise Goodwin?

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Goodwin wants to know. Put your GM hat on. What would would you do?

Arizona Cardinals v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images

On Sunday afternoon, San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Marquise Goodwin showed some self-awareness. He posted on his Instagram, saying, “many say I’ll get traded, many say I’ll stay. Only ownership knows for sure. Would you like to see me stay? For the ones that hate me, where do you think I’ll potentially go?” The players hear the rumors that are going on about them, no matter what they say. Whether it’s searching their names, or someone tagging them, the news gets back to these players. Some players will dunk on idiot writers, while others choose the more gracious way as Goodwin did.

The options

Goodwin was discussed as a trade candidate in early March, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. At the NFL combine, Niners head coach Kyle Shanahan said the veteran is too valuable to cut, and the team will explore trading Goodwin. If you can get a draft pick for a player you plan on cutting; you do it. It doesn’t matter if the draft pick is a sixth-round pick, that’s still a positive outcome for the 49ers. If Goodwin is cut before June 1, the 49ers will save $3.6 million against the cap while eating $1.2 million in dead money. Those numbers are the same if Goodwin is traded.

The other option is keeping Goodwin. Last summer at OTAs, Shanahan predicted how this season would go for Marquise. I’m paraphrasing here, but he said Goodwin usually starts well, then gets banged up, and the team can’t count on him moving forward. It was odd at the time, but that was Kyle doing what Kyle always does: telling it how it is. I appreciate that. He was a fan of Goodwin at the time, and I’m sure he still is. If the 49ers keep Goodwin in 2020, his cap number is $4.9 million. Even if Emmanuel Sanders walks in free agency, Goodwin is likely the 49ers fourth wide receiver at best in 2020. You can’t pay a player that won’t get more than five targets a game almost five million in a season.

What I’d do

In 2017, Goodwin had 23 targets over 20 yards and 41 targets between 10-20 yards. That is how you use Goodwin, and we saw him be productive. In 2019, everything changed. Goodwin became more of an underneath threat. He only had four targets over 20 yards and ten targets between 10-20 yards. If I’m John Lynch, I’m selling other teams on Goodwin’s usage and how he still has value. There’s no doubt Goodwin can still run. Because he’s still one of the faster players in the NFL, there will be a market.

Finding what that market is will fall on Lynch. I’d lead with a fourth-round pick in negotiations, and end up settling on a fifth or sixth-rounder. Again, any pick you can get back is a good thing for San Francisco. There is a good chunk of teams in the league that need help at receiver. You’re not going to trade Goodwin in the division so that you can rule out the Cardinals. I’m not doing deals with the Patriots or Ravens, so let’s scratch them off the list. I’d target a receiver-needy team that wasn’t good in 2019. That’s not to put Goodwin in a bad position. He’ll find a way on the field with his speed either way. That’s to benefit me in the draft. A team like the Bengals or Jets will be picking at the top of each round. They both have young cores that could use a veteran like Goodwin, and there’s more value in a sixth-round pick if it’s at the top.

What would you do with Goodwin?

Poll

What would you do with Goodwin if you were the 49ers?

This poll is closed

  • 9%
    Keep him
    (93 votes)
  • 84%
    Trade him for a Day 3 pick
    (850 votes)
  • 6%
    Cut him
    (65 votes)
1008 votes total Vote Now