While the 49ers likely won’t be aggressive trying to lure in talent by the NFL trade deadline, these four players could be potential adds if the price is right.
Don’t expect general manager John Lynch and the San Francisco 49ers to be in hot pursuit of a big-name player by the time the 2021 NFL trade deadline rolls around.
No, in all likelihood, the Niners will be “sellers” at the deadline, not just because of the frustrating 2-3 start to the season, but also because Lynch is limited both in salary cap space and NFL Draft capital, absent first-round picks in 2022 and 2023. And with just under $5 million in available cap space right now, per Over the Cap, it’d be tough to lure in anyone with any substantial contract remaining for the rest of the year.
Still, it never hurts to try.
Mind you, the Jacksonville Jaguars shipped off standout cornerback C.J. Henderson to the Carolina Panthers for tight end Dan Arnold and a pick swap between Rounds 3 and 5. And, as the nature of cap space goes, there’s always a bit of wiggle room with restructures and extensions.
So, maybe San Francisco can afford a move or two if the opposite team is willing to strike a deal.
Particularly for these four players.
49ers Trade Target No. 4: OG Andrew Norwell, Jaguars
The Jaguars sending off Henderson could be an indication they’re completely retooling their roster, although sending off a steadfast offensive guard like Andrew Norwell would seem somewhat counterintuitive.
Especially with the intent of protecting rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence.
By the time Jacksonville is good again, though, Norwell will be long past the 30-year-old marker and is playing on the final deal of his current contract anyway. If the Jags want some draft assets to help continue the rebuild, doing so now might be the way to do it.
Even if such a move costs a Round 3 pick and/or some additional players in exchange.
The 49ers would have to figure out how to absorb the remaining portion of his $9 million post-trade salary for this year, and he’s a free agent in 2022. That might be cause for a cost-reducing extension, and the immediate upgrade over right guard Daniel Brunskill would be there.
Same with finding a long-term replacement for current left guard Laken Tomlinson, who’s a free agent next year. And it also guards against rookie guard Aaron Banks, who has been a full inactive each week this season after the Niners used a second-round pick on him.
Even if Banks puts it all together in 2022, San Francisco has to find another option to either replace Tomlinson or upgrade over Brunskill.