5 players 49ers must aggressively shop at 2021 trade deadline
By Peter Panacy
The 2021 NFL trade deadline is fast approaching, and the 49ers would be wise to explore trading away these five players for whatever possible.
At 2-4, the San Francisco 49ers are notably closer towards trying to be sellers at the 2021 NFL trade deadline just days away.
True, the Niners could finally find a hot streak and get back into contention. But based on the way head coach Kyle Shanahan has seen his team play over what’s turned into an ugly four-game losing streak, it’s hard to predict San Francisco suddenly putting itself into serious playoff contention.
A point where being buyers would make some sense.
So, it would make a lot of logical sense for general manager John Lynch to try trading away assets in order to stockpile NFL Draft capital for 2022 and beyond, even if that could proverbially be viewed as the 49ers “waving the white flag” on the season.
Note, the NFL trade deadline doesn’t always feature the blockbuster-type deals like MLB, the NHL or even the NBA. And it’s important to note that teams rarely give up valued assets for another team’s “garbage.”
No squad is going to trade for Niners cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, FYI.
However, Lynch and Co. should try seeing if they can get something, anything for these five players before the deadline.
No. 5: 49ers Defensive Tackle Zach Kerr
Eating our words just a little bit here, because it’s hard fathoming any team wanting to give up trade assets to get a player, nose tackle Zach Kerr in this case, when there are comparable free agents out there on the market who can be had without having to give up anything but a veteran’s minimum contract.
And, typically speaking, run-stuffing 1-technique defenders aren’t too hard to find.
Kerr, however, might be a slightly different story. A player who was already on the bubble during training camp, if for no other reason than San Francisco already had two others, D.J. Jones and Kevin Givens, was going to land on another 53-man roster elsewhere if the 49ers cut him. And for a short, squatty nose tackle, Kerr actually moves quite well and has an underappreciated interior pass rush.
Still, Kerr remains buried on the Niners depth chart and has been active for just three games this season. With San Francisco working fellow defensive tackle Maurice Hurst back into the rotation after his lengthy injury absences, Kerr’s long-term fit with the team simply isn’t there.
The 49ers wouldn’t get much of anything in return. But it would be worth a try nonetheless.