- A trade. ***ONLY ONE*** This must include the player/pick(s) (obviously) as well as the compensation you would have to give up acquiring him/the pick(s).
- Two free agents (contracts are irrelevant since we have a wizard in Paraag Marathe) but it must only be two free agents. For the purposes of this exercise, we will assume that anyone who is a free agent at the time of authoring the article is fair game.
- Two draft picks. The picks can obviously be anyone but within the realm of possibility (so no Nick Bosa and Josh Allen – the team are extremely unlikely to be able to land two consensus top 10 players with no character concerns)
Trade: AJ Bouye
The Jaguars are going to have to pay Nick Foles (assuming they go after him) — and after he won a Super Bowl with Philly and a playoff win against the Bears, that won’t be cheap. Then over the next two seasons, they will have to pay a few big players. Jalen Ramsey will be very expensive to keep and becomes a free agent in 2021 — assuming they pick up his 5th year, even then they are going to want to start working on those numbers before then. Also, Yannick Ngakoue and Myles Jack will be a free agents in 2020. With Blake Bortles on his way out, AJ Bouye will be responsible for the second-most cap space on the active roster. Assuming they will want to hold on to Ramsey, Jack, and Ngakue long term, they need to make some space soon. This all means the Jaguars may be looking to let go of some of Bouye’s large contract. As a team with a lot of cap space and a secondary in need of a little help, San Francisco could be the ideal destination. I wanted Bouye back when the Jaguars first signed him, and two years later I think he would still be a valuable addition to the team. You could tell the Jaguars planned for a situation like this when signing Bouye because there is a potential out in his contract before the 2019 season. Instead of cutting, maybe they can get something out of him from San Francisco in return for sending a high-caliber CB contracted for 2 more seasons.
*Since writing this the Jaguars have cleared up roughly $23 million in cap space after cutting a handful of players. This furthers my point that they want some cap space cleared, but it either means they have cleared what they wanted or they are still making more room. Before those moves they were estimated to have very little cap space. However, the fact still remains they have a lot of holes on offense to be filled and a lot of defensive contracts expiring in the near future. Paying a CB2 that much money can’t be their favorite thing. Just because they cut all those players doesn’t quite take them out of “cap trouble” following the expected Nick Foles signing, considering they have now created more holes to be filled.
Backup Plan: Dee Ford
Yes, the Chiefs did tag Ford. However, they tagged him in hope to be able to trade him. Rumors say they want a 2nd-round pick and I think that would be worth it for the impact he could have. Not the best scheme fit, but Ford brings an edge pressure the Niners so desperately need.
Draft: Nick Bosa
I’m sure you’ve seen this one enough, but this is the right answer. Nick Bosa is not only the best player in the 2019 draft, he is the best player to take SF’s roster to the next level. Assuming, the Kyler Murray-to-Arizona rumors are true, the Niners will be handed Nick Bosa on a silver platter. I don’t think there is much else to say at this point, if you’re not on the Bosa train I think you should check his film again.
Backup Plan: Quinnen Williams
If Nick Bosa is gone and no one is willing to trade with SF, it’s time to run with the second-best player in the draft, Quinnen Williams. I still think drafting BPA is the way to go especially at second-overall. Williams paired with Deforest Buckner would be lethal. Good luck blocking both those guys and if you can, edge presence will come easier whoever you have there.
Draft: Deebo Samuel
I have some personal favorite receivers in the draft other than Deebo but most of them will be gone by our second round pick. Kyle Shanahan has seemed to be a fan of Samuel after working with him in the senior bowl. Our very own, Eric Crocker said Deebo looks like a younger Pierre Garçon coming out. Kyle Shanahan is on record saying he wants a younger Garçon. Shanahan loves a receiver who can create some space and Deebo’s high-quality route-running allows him to create space fast. At 5’11’’ 214LBS, he would be one of the taller receivers. Kyle Shanahan loves a guy with quick feet, and Deebo is about as shifty as anyone else in this draft class. He will fit in quite nicely with Dante Pettis.
Backup Plan: Riley Ridley
I can’t lie — the reason I’m so high on this player is mainly due to our very own Eric Crocker singing his praises. After hearing all that, I had to check him out — and he is a great player. Ridley seems like a very balanced player that has a lot of skills under his belt. He has received comparisons to Michael Thomas, and that should be enough to make you give him a thorough look. After a combine performance that made some people question him, I’m sure he is to fall in some analyst’s boards, but the game film shows what he lacks in full-blown speed he makes up for with natural hands and the ability to go up and get the ball. He could be a great red-zone threat for a team whose best red-zone threat for the past few years has been their kicker.
Free Agency: CJ Mosley:
I think this would be a huge addition to the Niners’ defense. Not only is their LB core pretty thin, but it brings another leader to the team. Fred Warner has played in the middle so far, but if Mosley comes in he’ll likely take that spot. Going to the outside is nothing new for Warner, as he saw it at BYU. Mosley is only 26 years old and he has already proven to be a great player. Not only does this fill a need for the upcoming year but he is a player SF could keep around long-term. Mosely led the 10-6 Ravens in tackles and has done so 3 of the 5 seasons since being drafted. He has also been top-10 in the NFL in tackles in 2 of his 5 seasons. As a team that struggled to tackle, that would be a phenomenal addition to the Niners’ defense.
Free Agency: Landon Collins
The safety position is very deep in free agency this year. Everyone has the guy they want. Earl Thomas, Landon Collins, Eric Weddle (just signed to the Rams), Tyrann Mathieu, Adrian Amos, Lamarcus Joyner, Tashaun Gipson all headline the list of great safeties available. I think the Niners have talent at the safety position, but that talent is raw and needs some guidance. I’m not giving up on Adrian Colbert quite yet, he had a rough year dealing with a lot of injury and he definitely had a sophomore slump. However, I think he still has a lot to give the team. Marcell Harris also showed some promise in the second half of the season. With a Pro-Bowler like Landon Collins on the roster, he can share a lot of experience with these young guys. Collins is only 25 and has been a repeat Pro-Bowler but he also has a lot more to grow himself and plenty of time to do it. Earl Thomas is an incredible player but he will be 30 years old by the time the season starts and he is also coming off a major leg injury. Thomas would be a great add to the team but I think Collins is a safer bet and also a player the Niners can keep around for a long time.
Williams at 6’4”, would bring some much needed height to this receiving core. I see a lot of Tyrell Williams slander on twitter from 49ers fans, but we need to realize Tyrell is not the guy you bring in to be your #1 guy. He is a guy with a few more years left in him in the NFL, so he is definitely ready to start proving himself. Williams has already noted that he thinks he has more to offer than he was able to prove in his time with the Chargers. I think he will be a valuable addition and has the potential to have more of an impact than his contract is going to warrant.
Houston is expected to be a cap casualty for the Chiefs, seeing as they don’t find a trade partner soon. Houston won’t be one of those “bargain bin” guys but the Niners have the money, might as well spend it! Justin Houston is still getting to the right quarterback and doing it well. Not only does he bring a pass-rush presence, but he also could be a great mentor for a potential younger guy to be brought in to work the edge too.