NFL trade deadline: 5 dream moves 49ers would love to make

Brian Burns #53 of the Carolina Panthers (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)
Brian Burns #53 of the Carolina Panthers (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images) /
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Daron Payne, Washington Football Team
Washington Football Team defensive tackle Daron Payne (94) Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /

49ers NFL trade deadline dream target No. 3: DT Daron Payne, Commanders

Grabbing another pass-rusher isn’t the only thing John Lynch might be looking at doing by the NFL trade deadline.

In fact, one can make the argument the interior of San Francisco’s defensive line is in much worse shape than on the outside, especially after watching two of its starters, Arik Armstead and Javon Kinlaw, miss the last two games because of injuries.

And both could end up being out for a considerable length of time, too, as head coach Kyle Shanahan pointed out after Week 6.

What the 49ers need is someone who can serve as a solid run-stuffing interior lineman who can also get to opposing quarterbacks, and that’s what Washington Commanders defensive tackle Daron Payne has been over the course of his five-year career.

Wanting and deserving a contract extension, Payne might have to seek it elsewhere in 2023, and Washington’s own struggles almost mandate him being on the move.

Payne could help alleviate any elongated absence of either Armstead or Kinlaw for the rest of the season, and the Niners wouldn’t see any notable downgrade by adding the 25-year-old Payne who has 18 sacks and 27 tackles for a loss over his four-plus years in the NFL.