49ers news: Niners do right by Jeff Wilson, trade him to Dolphins

Jeff Wilson Jr. #22 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Jeff Wilson Jr. #22 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images) /

The 49ers received some great impromptu production over the years from Jeff Wilson, so moving him to the Dolphins at the NFL trade deadline is the right thing to do.

Running back Jeff Wilson Jr. should go down as one of the more underrated and less-appreciated San Francisco 49ers players in recent history.

In 2020, back when the Niners were dealing with all kinds of injury problems, Wilson stepped up to the tune of 600 yards rushing, and he almost single-handedly delivered defeats to both the New England Patriots and Arizona Cardinals that year.

Now, in 2022 after San Francisco lost its top rusher in Elijah Mitchell in Week 1, Wilson again filled the void of being head coach Kyle Shanahan’s fill-in starter. And through the first eight weeks of the season, Wilson again found himself out to the team lead in total rush yards with 468, putting him on a trajectory to best his 2020 totals by a significant margin.

However, that was all before the 49ers acquired All-Pro running back Christian McCaffrey from the Carolina Panthers just prior to Week 7.

With McCaffrey in the fray, and Mitchell poised to return from his MCL sprain, Wilson was looking squarely at being the No. 3 man on the depth chart once more.

So, it’s probably fair to all parties that the Niners move Wilson just hours before the 2022 NFL trade deadline.

49ers trade Jeff Wilson to Dolphins for a Round 5 NFL Draft pick

San Francisco made its splash move at the deadline by acquiring Christian McCaffrey, an expensive deal and one that didn’t come cheaply.

However, recouping some draft capital could always be in play if the 49ers elected to move a player like Wilson, and that’s what the decision ended up being, first reported by NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero:

Wilson is off to join the Miami Dolphins, reuniting with his former run-game and offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel, whose Dolphins are out to a 5-3 start amid a very competitive AFC East.

Whether or not Wilson will see an increase in use with his new team is ultimately up to McDaniel, yet it’s pretty safe to say the running back’s future with the Niners would have been bleak.

Read More: NFL trade deadline 2022: Last-second deals 49ers could pull off

Especially with San Francisco looking to get the most out of McCaffrey, then spell him with Mitchell.

In that regard, the 49ers are actually doing Wilson a favor by sending him to a place where he’ll be more useful.

And Niners fans shouldn’t forget what Wilson did when called upon for the red and gold.

Next. Ranking 49ers' 10 best trades in franchise history. dark