On Friday evening, Ben Allbright, who is plugged into the Denver Broncos and has been for years now, tweeted that the 49ers and the Cardinals could be interested in restricted free agent running back Philip Lindsay. It would depend on what tender Denver places on Linsday, but he has two 1,000 yard rushing seasons and is one of the fastest running backs in the league. His style of play would fit the 49ers' wide-zone scheme.
Cam Robinson 6-6, 320 lbs., 25 years old, Exp. 4 years
Robinson has been the starting left tackle for the Jacksonville Jaguars since being drafted out of Florida State in the 2nd round (34th overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft. Like Moton, he is a candidate for the franchise tag, and with the Jaguars having the most cap space in the league ($74 million), they could easily afford to tag him. They could also be a team that throws out an obscene amount of money to bring in Trent Williams.
Robinson is not an elite left tackle, but he has been a solid contributor for the Jaguars. He suffered an ACL tear in the second game of the 2018 season and has earned PFF pass-blocking grades in the sixties in the three seasons he’s been healthy. In those three seasons, Robinson has allowed 137 pressures, resulting in 16 sacks, 25 quarterback hits, and 96 hurries. If Robinson doesn’t get tagged by the Jaguars, he could be a candidate for a one-year “prove it” deal to establish higher value and enter the 2022 offseason looking to cash in when the cap is expected to rebound.
LC: “I think John Lynch better look over his shoulder. Look — I’m not there anymore, I don’t talk to Lynch, although I knew him as a young man and really liked him and admired him. I don’t feel that he is on solid ground there. He only got a two-year extension when Kyle Shanahan got a three-year extension, plus the 49ers never announced Lynch’s extension. You give an extension to your general manager and don’t have a press release? There are cracks in that foundation. Having said that, I am not Lynch’s agent, so I need to ask a further question: Is Adam Peters good at his job?”
Pro Football Focus’ Top First Round Wide Receivers
San Francisco’s 25th-overall pick from the 2020 draft just landed on a list from Pro Football Focus among prestigious talent. The analytics site release the top four highest-graded first-round rookie wide receivers drafted since 2014, with Brandon Aiyuk closing out the group. During his rookie season, Aiyuk recorded 748 receiving yards on 60 receptions for five touchdowns. Adding to his total, the receiver also racked up 77 rushing yards on six attempts and two touchdowns on the ground. Check out PFF’s list below.
Odell Beckham Jr. - 90.8
Justin Jefferson - 90.4
Mike Evans - 84.6
Brandon Aiyuk - 80.1
Of course, 49ers salary cap guru Paraag Marathe will be able to push back big time cap hits to later years when the NFL revenue increases post-COVID. But that’s still roughly $30 million or so set to count against San Francisco’s cap in 2021 should the team re-sign the players mentioned above.
What does this all mean? While the 49ers should have some money to spend in free agency, most of their work to create depth with 40-plus impending free agents will have to be done through the 2021 NFL Draft.
That’s where this article comes into play. As of right now, the 49ers have 10 draft picks. That doesn’t take into account a possible trade for a quarterback.
Reuter has the 49ers bolstering their pass rush with former Miami defensive end Gregory Rousseau at No. 12 overall.
“The 49ers’ defensive line was decimated by injury in 2020 and will be hit hard again in free agency,” wrote Reuter. “Picking the long and strong Rousseau would allow Arik Armstead to move back inside, where he can be more disruptive.”
Rousseau (6-7, 265) recorded 54 tackles, 19.5 tackles for a loss, 15.5 sacks, a pass defensed, and two forced fumbles through 13 games in 2019. He opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns.
Reuter doesn’t add comments to his projected selections beyond Round 1, but the strategy appears to address the concerns mentioned at the start of this article. The analyst has San Francisco drafting former Georgia cornerback Tyson Campbell (6-2, 185) at No. 43 overall in the second round, and then former San Diego State cornerback Darren Hall (6-0, 190) in the fourth round, a player the team met with at the Senior Bowl.