Tuesday, May 14, 2013
2013 NFC West offseason glance: 49ers
By Mike Sando
A look at the San Francisco 49ers' offseason to this point ...
What went right: The 49ers kept together their coaching staff, a major victory following a two-year run of success. ... General manager Trent Baalke continued to maximize trade value in ways that should benefit the team for years to come. That included getting a 2013 second-round choice and another early 2014 selection from Kansas City for Alex Smith even though the 49ers might have released Smith in the absence of a trade. ... The 49ers added to their haul of 2014 draft choices, which stands at 10, while still maneuvering around the 2013 board to select the players they had targeted, including safety Eric Reid. ... Management secured a naming-rights deal for the team's new stadium, improving the longer-term debt situation. ... Anquan Boldin and Glenn Dorsey filled immediate needs in free agency without compromising the longer term. ... The 49ers reached a contract extension with 23-year-old right tackle Anthony Davis, who owns 53 regular-season and postseason starts in three NFL seasons. ... The 49ers re-signed guard Adam Snyder on the cheap after receiving a compensatory pick for losing him a year earlier -- not a great move from a personnel standpoint, but one that showed, again, the 49ers' flair for working the system.
What went wrong: Every one of the 49ers' division rivals appeared to get better, reducing the team's margin for error. ... The 49ers lost director of player personnel Tom Gamble to the Philadelphia Eagles. Gamble, Baalke and the personnel staff had worked productively for years. ... Cornerback Chris Culliver, reprimanded for anti-gay remarks made during Super Bowl week, invited further criticism with remarks demeaning women. ... The 49ers were in on the Percy Harvin trade talks, but they weren't willing to pay the price Minnesota commanded ultimately. They could have lived with Harvin landing outside the NFC West instead of with a primary rival. ... Strong markets for Dashon Goldson and Delanie Walker made those players' departures all but certain, whereas the team had re-signed Goldson on the relative cheap previously.
The bottom line: The 49ers are still the team to beat the NFC West. They are still good enough to win the division and compete for the Super Bowl. It's just that the road out of the division is more treacherous these days.
Your turn: Any significant omissions here?