The NFL trade deadline is quickly approaching and we can expect one of the busiest trade deadlines in recent memory this year.
The San Francisco 49ers own the most picks in the 2014 NFL Draft and are always trying to improve their team so they do not have to travel to New Orleans or Seattle in January, so it’s fair to assume the 49ers could be busy before tomorrow’s 1 p.m. PST deadline.
Here are the top players that could be the apple of 49ers general manager Trent Baalke’s eye:
Josh Gordon – Gordon had one of the best games of his career against the best defense in the NFL on Sunday which probably makes his trade value the highest it has ever been. Clearly the Cleveland Browns’ best player, the price tag is at least a 2nd round pick in the upcoming draft. And wouldn’t you know, with the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory over the Browns the Alex Smith trade compensation bumped up from a 3rd round pick to a 2nd round pick. With two 2nd rounders, the 49ers would be wise to get a top-10 receiver. The only caveat: Gordon has off the field issues and is one failed drug test from being banned by the league for a year.
Kenny Britt – Britt can be had for a moldy ham sandwich, which means some receiver-needy team could be willing to offer a conditional 7th round pick for the receiver. Britt has off the field issues, injury concerns and catching problems. The 49ers are on the verge of getting Mario Manningham and Michael Crabtree back, trading for Britt would be unwise.
Hakeem Nicks – Speaking of receivers who cannot catch the ball, the New York Giants are open to trading Nicks. The asking price is a 3rd round pick for a receiver who is struggling with injuries, getting separation and holding onto the ball. Rueben Randle and Victor Cruz have outperformed the receiver this year, making Nicks – who’s in a contract year – expendable. The Niners already have a receiver who cannot get separation in Anquan Boldin, they do not need another.
Jared Allen – Allen would immediately become Justin Smith’s new BFF if the 49ers pulled off a trade for the outdoorsman and eccentric pass rusher. Smith and Allen could bond over their affinity for hunting living things and Duck Dynasty , while going after their own prey – the quarterback. Allen is 31 and makes $18M this year. The Vikings are also asking for at least a 3rd round pick, since they would seemingly get a 3rd-round compensatory pick if Allen left via free agency. With the Niners getting a solid effort from Dan Skuta and rookie Corey Lemonier, and with Aldon Smith rumored to be returning after the bye, the Niners do not need an aging pass rusher.