3 players 49ers could trade before 2020 season begins

Tevin Coleman #26 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tevin Coleman #26 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /
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Dante Pettis, 49ers
Dante Pettis #18 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

No. 1: 49ers Wide Receiver Dante Pettis

As Matt Breida found out, it’s very hard to successfully emerge from Kyle Shanahan’s proverbial “doghouse.”

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Breida’s reasons for being there aren’t totally clear, and some could argue he was merely the victim of bad luck. For third-year wide receiver Dante Pettis, however, there’s no argument he’s fallen out of Shanahan’s graces. From a potential WR1 candidate on the roster late in 2018 all the way to being inactive for Super Bowl LIV, Pettis’ fall has been one of the uglier storylines in what’s otherwise been a storybook turnaround for the franchise.

Pettis’ immediate future wasn’t aided by the 49ers selecting wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Jauan Jennings in the NFL Draft, either, which will put more competition on the former Washington standout to secure one of only a handful of roles behind second-year pro Deebo Samuel.

Essentially, Pettis will have to have the offseason campaign of his life to make the cut.

The likelier scenario is Pettis benefiting from a change of scenery. At 24 years old and a former second-round draft pick, Pettis still falls into the “potential” category and could still command a good deal of interest from one of the multitudes of receiver-needy teams out there. Granted, the Niners would probably take a loss on their investment, commanding no better than a day-three draft pick in return. But moving him via trade would clear up over $1 million in cap space the next two seasons while also freeing up a depth spot for one of the other candidates at the position whom Shanahan has eyes on.

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Most importantly, the Niners wouldn’t be taking a total loss here.