No. 2: SF 49ers don’t want to part with NFL Draft capital
John Lynch has never shied away from trading off NFL Draft assets to acquire established veteran talent. In 2019, he traded a second-round pick to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for EDGE Dee Ford. At the deadline a year ago, wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders was the pickup from the Denver Broncos for a Round 2 selection. Last April, Lynch acquired left tackle Trent Williams from Washington at the cost of two mid-round picks, one this year and a third rounder in 2021.
Perhaps San Francisco puts a brief halt on that approach.
Currently, here are the draft assets the Niners have:
- Round 1 (own)
- Round 2 (own)
- Round 4 (own)
- Round 5 (own)
- Round 6 (own)
- Round 7 (from NY Jets)
- Round 7 (own)
Nearly a full array, although the lack of a Round 3 pick could carry weight. There’s also the likelihood of a fifth-round compensatory pick to be added for the free-agent loss of Sanders last spring, although those picks will be announced in early 2021. But while Lynch and Kyle Shanahan always stress the desire to improve the team, the head coach’s recent comments about trade possibilities were telling.
“Action doesn’t always happen,” Shanahan told reporters last week. “We’re not in the mood to just giving up a bunch of our draft picks either. We had to do that last year to make a number of key moves that I think helped us, but we also don’t want another draft to where we don’t have too many picks.”
Sure, there’s the argument an experienced NFL player is more valuable to a team than an unproven rookie. While mostly true, the next reason describes why San Francisco probably won’t be active buyers at the deadline.