Even Saturday wasn’t a slow day for the 49ers as the team added linebacker Nate Gerry and re re-signed WR Mohamed Sanu. What will Sunday bring?
Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch have each endorsed Jimmy Garoppolo as the planned 2021 starter, and the 49ers are sending out signals they do not expect to trade their incumbent passer. But the team parted with tremendous future draft capital to climb nine spots to No. 3 overall. The 49ers should be widely expected to draft a quarterback in the first round for the first time since they chose Alex Smith first overall in 2005. Which one will they select?
Only two drafts — 1971 and 1999 — have begun with three consecutive teams taking quarterbacks. With the Falcons connected to choosing a Matt Ryan heir apparent, this draft could be the first to start with four straight QBs. Should Lawrence and Wilson head to the Jaguars and Jets, the 49ers will have their pick of seemingly Justin Fields, Trey Lance or Mac Jones. With a Garoppolo trade seemingly now in play, one of these three could have the keys to the San Francisco’s offense as soon as this coming season.
The 49ers pulled off a major trade with the Dolphins on Friday, moving up nine slots to presumably land their quarterback of the future. We’re not sure which quarterback they love enough to give up two future first-round picks and a third-rounder, but for now, I’ll run with Lance. His athleticism and arm strength could be an excellent fit in Kyle Shanahan’s offense.
If the 49ers select anyone but a quarterback, it’ll be considered a failed pick. Wilson has been a draft crush for many Niners fans. And with this franchise alternating trade, the fairytale ending could be in sight.
In 2020, the potential third overall selection threw for 3,692 yards, 33 touchdowns, three interceptions, and completed 73 percent of his passes.
He also rushed for 254 yards and 10 scores.
Niner Faithful obviously wants a quarterback who can stay healthy. Wilson’s last known injury was back in 2019 when he was dealing with shoulder surgery. A far cry from Garoppolo, who’s only had one healthy season since arriving halfway through 2017.
Shanahan also would like to have a mobile presence in the pocket. It would positively change how creative he can be.
By giving up the future first-round picks, the 49ers are saying they don’t think they’ll need the picks to replace any key starters in the next few years, the way they replaced DeForest Buckner with Javon Kinlaw and Emmanuel Sanders with Brandon Aiyuk in last year’s first round. Lynch and Shanahan are betting that their roster is pretty much set for now and for years. That’s a pretty bold conclusion, but they’ve drafted well enough the last few years and they’ve re-signed everybody they needed to this month.
Loser: Jimmy Garoppolo
As we mentioned, it appears the 49ers are all-in on selecting a quarterback at No. 3 overall. That obviously is not good news for San Francisco’s current quarterback, Garoppolo. A ”49ers source” told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Friday, “Jimmy is here to stay. He’s our guy this year.” I know I’m not alone in saying that I don’t believe that statement.
While general manager John Lynch has said that he has no doubt Garoppolo will be with the 49ers in 2021, we have heard plenty of general managers say the same thing only to trade away their starter a month later. Could the 49ers draft someone like Justin Fields out of Ohio State or Trey Lance out of North Dakota State and have them sit under Garoppolo? Sure, that’s possible. Even in that hypothetical, however, the pressure on Garoppolo would reach unprecedented levels. But hey, maybe Friday could actually mean something good for Garoppolo. Is it possible he could be playing football in New England in 2021?
Goodwin Returns With Win At Florida International Pro Addition
Goodwin, who is competing for the first time since 2016, only had two legal jumps on the day, but they were enough to secure the victory.
After fouling on his opening two attempts, the American Olympian held it together to cut the sand at 8.07m (26′ 5¾”) in the third round of the competition.
The 30-year-old then stretched on his next two tries before stretching out to the day’s longest mark.
Saturday’s Florida International Pro Addition meeting was the first for Goodwin since his impressive 2016 season when he jumped a personal best of 8.45m at an event in Baie-Mahault, Guadeloupe. His campaign, however, ended in disappointment after he failed to make back-to-back Team USA Olympic teams, following his appearance at the 2012 Games in London.
But there has been a shift in the tide. Jones’ greatest trait might be that he’s very reliable. Is his arm talent special? No. Is he a great athlete? Not really, even if he tested better than expected.
What Jones does best is distribute. He gets the ball to his horses and lets them run. It might read as an older formula at the position, but it’s what Shanahan wants. He wants a QB who can make full-field progressions, throw cleanly with a quick release and deliver the ball with touch and placement.
Check, check, check, check — Jones passes those tests. Again, trading two future firsts and more to land Jones feels like selling your house to buy a brand new Prius. It’s not what we would do, but ruling out Jones here feels way too premature.