49ers Players: Grading The 49ers Free Agency
The San Francisco 49ers were very busy at the start of free agency, as they tried to improve their roster. After going 5-0 with Jimmy Garoppolo under center last season, the 49ers odds to make the playoffs next season have significantly improved, which is why the team is doing everything it can to provide Garoppolo with the tools he needs to succeed.
Biggest Signing: The 49ers were expected to sign a few defensive players, but they surprised a lot of fans when they went after former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, who suffered an Achilles injury last season.
The Sherman signing could be a big move for the team if he fully recovers from the Achilles injury because a healthy Sherman is one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL. If the injury lingers into the season, the 49ers will still be in good shape because they signed Sherman to a team friendly deal to protect themselves.
Biggest Loss: Brandon Fusco, Busco signed a deal with the Atlanta Falcons, but his departure will be felt by the 49ers because he started all 16 games this past season and improved as the season went along. The fact that the 49ers have a lot of holes at the guard position also makes it a big loss for the team.
The 49ers will likely use one of their draft picks on an offensive guard, but they likely won’t get the type of production they got from Fusco from the rookie.
One of the players the 49ers should have signed in free agency is wide receiver Allen Robinson. Like most teams, the 49ers were wary about the knee injury he suffered last season, but that didn’t prevent other teams from bidding in his services.
With their quarterback situation sorted out, the 49ers still don’t have a clear number one receiver, which could lead to Garoppolo regressing next season if he doesn’t have a reliable target to throw too. At 6 foot three inches, Robinson would have given Garoppolo a big target to throw too, especially in the red zone.
The fact that top receiver Pierre Garcon is 32-years-old is another reason the 49ers should have gone after Robinson. Garcon, who played in only eight games last season, is at the tail end of his career and will likely see his numbers drop again this season, especially if he can’t stay healthy again.
One area the 49ers still haven’t fully addressed is their running back position. The team decided to let former second-round pick Carlos Hyde walk during the offseason because he didn’t fit well in head coach Kyle Shanahan’s offense, and was injury prone.
The 49ers decided to sign Jerick McKinnon from the Minnesota Vikings. However, the 25-year-old back has never gone over 500 rushing yards in a season. Since the 49ers can still pick up a running back in the draft, we have to wait and see what they do to solidify the position.
With the 2018 NFL Draft coming up soon, the 49ers will likely try to fill some of the holes they have through free agency so they can select the best available players in the draft.


 


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