In this series, we will look at some of the worst teams in the league and figure out a way to turn them around in the next couple of years to make them contenders in the NFL.
The San Francisco 49ers are on their second general manager and third head coach in the two seasons since Jim Harbaugh was fired and they have not looked good. They have only won seven games and have regressed each of the last three season. They haven’t had a lot of talent because of a lot of departures on both sides of the ball and need to replenish their talent if they have any hope of getting better anytime soon.
The 49ers are fortunate to have the second overall pick and should be able to chose whichever quarterback that they desire, especially if the Browns decide to take Myles Garrett as everyone expects. There are three top quarterbacks in this class, Mitch Trubisky out of North Carolina, DeShone Kizer out of Notre Dame and Deshaun Watson out of Clemson. The most likely fit for a Kyle Shanahan run offense would be Trubisky. He has all of the tools to become a good quarterback in the NFL and is the best pure passer in this year’s draft class. He doesn’t have the mobility of Watson or Kizer, but is able to make moves with his legs if he has to.
If they are able to get their quarterback in free agency, then they should look to get an impact player like a Jonathan Allen, Malik Hooker or Jamal Adams to help boost their defense. They could also consider a deal to trade down and acquire more picks, as they need a lot of help on both sides of the ball. They should only trade down if a good deal is presented and they don’t go too far down. Their second round pick should be pretty valuable as well because this draft class has a lot of solid pass rushers and cornerbacks, both could help this defense out. If someone like a Tim Williams falls out of the first round due to character issues, then maybe the 49ers can pounce and get a really good player at that time.
Finally, they can try to improve their secondary. There are a few good cornerbacks set to hit free agency including AJ Bouye and Trumaine Johnson, both of which would give this team a big boost. The 49ers only had ten interceptions last season and had a negative five turnover ratio last season, that needs to improve if they want to compete into January again. With their current cap space and the possible loss of Kaepernick, the 49ers are in a good position to make a big splash this offseason.
The 49ers have a lot of holes that need to be filled, but they have the resources to turn this around with a really good coach. Shanahan needs to be given time to work this team out, giving a coach only one season to turn a team around is just unrealistic. He has a proven track record in the NFL and should be given at least three seasons to get this team headed in the right direction. If that time is granted, then this team should be competing at a high level again soon.