3 reasons why SF 49ers must be ‘sellers’ at 2020 NFL trade deadline

San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports /
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John Lynch, Kyle Shanahan, SF 49ers
San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch (left) with head coach Kyle Shanahan. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports /

While the SF 49ers are still in contention for the playoffs, there’s enough to suggest the Niners should be “sellers” at the NFL trade deadline.

The SF 49ers put themselves back into the playoff discussion by pulling off a 24-16 upset win over the Los Angeles Rams in Week 6, getting the Niners back to the .500 mark and righting what had been a two-game losing streak beforehand.

After what had been a bleak outlook at San Francisco’s prospects for getting back to the Super Bowl this season, suddenly it seems as if those chances took a sudden turn for the better, right?

Well, perhaps not.

Last year, given the SF 49ers’ red-hot 8-0 start, it made sense for general manager John Lynch and Co. to be active “buyers” leading up to the 2019 NFL trade deadline. And they were, nabbing veteran wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders from the Denver Broncos in a move that completely revitalized the Niners receiving corps and helped prompt their Super Bowl run.

This year, however, things might not be so simple. The record alone is a cause for concern. San Francisco finds itself at 3-3, which is surely better than 2-4, yet Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan remain in last place in an extremely tough NFC West. While the addition of an extra playoff berth per conference this season helps open up chances, they’re still not great.

According to Football Outsiders, the SF 49ers’ probability for making the postseason is just 31.4 percent even after the Week 6 win over Los Angeles.

Just under one chance in three.

That’s one reason why it might be wise for Lynch, Shanahan and the Niners to “punt” on their revenge tour, instead gearing up for 2021 by being sellers at this year’s NFL trade deadline.

Here are three other reasons.