Both of those players will be back fully healthy in 2019, which is excellent news. And their head coach, Kyle Shanahan, is one of the best offensive minds in the NFL right now. Tack all that on with the record-breaking emergence of tight end George Kittle, and the Niners are only a handful of offensive pieces away from being prolific.
San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco’s problems, however, reside on the defensive side of the ball.
The 49ers lack a pass rush and need help within the secondary. Good thing they’re tabbed to draft at No. 2 overall in a deep defensive class.
Yet the biggest reason why the Niners rank so high, despite the low record, is the fact they’re not totally far away from being a true playoff contender. They have a good head coach, a young franchise-caliber quarterback and a good deal of cap space.
If that doesn’t convince you, just ask a player many thing San Francisco will target in the NFL Draft, arguably the top prospect in this year’s class, Ohio State EDGE Nick Bosa.
“I would be lucky to get picked by them,” Bosa said on San Francisco’s KNBR 680 (h/t David Fucillo of Niners Nation). “I mean, the roster for a team that’s picking number two is a really stacked roster. They had the injury at quarterback that obviously allowed them to get this high in the draft. So I think it would be cool, definitely, to go play for a team that is closer than most people think to being a contender.”
That’s good enough to rise to 22nd in our NFL power rankings.