4 bold trades John Lynch, 49ers could pull off before 2023 season begins

Talking about shocking blockbuster trades is more common than the blockbuster trades themselves, but they're still fun to theorize about.
San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch
San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch / Michael Zagaris/GettyImages
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49ers general manager John Lynch has made pre-Week 1 trades before, but what if he executes a blockbuster deal this go-around?

San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch isn't shy about pulling the trigger on blockbuster trades.

While rare, the Niners have executed deals that were aggressive in nature, including last year's splash move for All-Pro running back Christian McCaffrey that completely reinvigorated what was previously a stagnant offense.

That trade took place just prior to the NFL trade deadline. Currently, Lynch and Co. are staring at the 90-man offseason roster in training camp and wondering which players should make the cut and comprise the 53-man roster. While there are a number of players who'll be waived or released, San Francisco wouldn't hesitate in considering a trade if it could get something decent in return.

Or, if the situation was right, trading for a commodity in the vein of last year's McCaffrey deal.

We should probably expect no more than low-end trades from Lynch prior to Week 1, if there are any at all. Considering those aren't fun to talk about, though, here are four bold trades Lynch and the 49ers could execute prior to the regular season.

Note: All contractual and salary-cap information, courtesy of Over the Cap.

49ers bold trade No. 4: Javon Kinlaw to Texans

Javon Kinlaw

After missing all but 10 games because of injuries the last two seasons combined, defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw is generating some serious hype in training camp, perhaps finally living up to the first-round NFL Draft status given to him by the Niners back in 2020.

That said, San Francisco effectively replaced Kinlaw already earlier this offseason by signing former Philadelphia Eagles star defensive tackle Javon Hargrave in NFL free agency, thereby relegating Kinlaw to backup status.

Kinlaw's former defensive coordinator, now-Houston Texans head coach DeMeco Ryans, doesn't have a strong D-line in Houston, and Pro Football Focus ranked that unit 23rd out of all defensive lines in the league entering 2023.

In short, Ryans needs help in the trenches. And Kinlaw is now a bit of an excess commodity for the 49ers.

By trading Kinlaw, the Niners would absorb $2.2 million in dead money but would free up $2.7 million in cap space. And while the former first-round pick wouldn't generate anything close to that in return, Houston probably wouldn't mind shipping off an early day-three draft pick to at least generate something of a return for San Francisco.