49ers offseason: 3 sneaky needs for San Francisco in 2022

Trey Lance #5 and Trenton Cannon #49 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Trey Lance #5 and Trenton Cannon #49 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /
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Kyle Shanahan, John Lynch, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan (left) and general manager John Lynch (right) Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports /

The 49ers have a playoff-caliber roster entering 2022 with only a handful of needs. Buried deep, though, are even more needs that aren’t being talked about much.

The 2021 San Francisco 49ers overachieved in a number of different ways.

Even before the regular season began, head coach Kyle Shanahan’s squad wasn’t perceived as a legitimate Super Bowl contender. Yet the Niners nevertheless made it to within minutes of advancing past the eventual NFL-champion Los Angeles Rams and probably could have defeated the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI, too.

Maybe. But we’ll never know.

At any rate, San Francisco’s roster is mostly intact heading into 2022. Yes, there are some pressing needs and issues, and one might rank the following as the top items/position groups to address this offseason:

  • Cornerback
  • Safety
  • Offensive line
  • Defensive line

Those are the obvious fixes in sight. Infusing talent at cornerback, while potentially finding a replacement for strong safety Jaquiski Tartt, is arguably atop the wish list as well. Getting the secondary up to par will have to be vital. Yet another pass-rusher to pair with EDGE Nick Bosa is there, too, and it’s never bad to reinforce the offensive line.

While the core of the 49ers roster remains intact, there are still some other less-discussed needs Shanahan and general manager John Lynch should try addressing this offseason.

Whether the Niners address these sneaky under-the-radar needs via free agency or the NFL Draft is anyone’s guess, but we can’t overlook them entirely.

Here are three Lynch, Shanahan and Co. can’t afford to completely neglect.