It was just over a year ago at this time that the San Francisco 49ers made a bold and out of the blue hire, when they plucked former Buccaneers and Broncos Pro Bowl safety John Lynch out of the broadcast booth and made him their general manager.
Well, now about 13 months into the process, it is obvious at the man who patrolled the back end of Tony Dungy and Jon Gruden’s defenses and won a Super Bowl in Tampa Bay, clearly knows what he’s doing. And has already improved the 49er roster dramatically.
Starting with last April in the draft, Lynch swung a trade with the Chicago Bears,who were looking to jump up to the second overall pick and grab quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. Then, he showed he had a plan to build the 49ers with defense. They took defensive lineman Solomon Thomas in the top five, and he eventually got linebacker Reuben Foster, at the end of the first round.
The biggest challenge was: who was going to be quarterback long-term in San Francisco for new head coach Kyle Shanahan? While the Niners could not get their hands on Kirk Cousins of the Redskins last off season or during the year, (neither can anyone else), Lynch eventually solved that.
In making the trade just before the deadline for New England’s QB Jimmy Garoppolo proved again, that he has aptitude and the ability to get things. Garoppolo immediately came in for the 49ers and led them to wins their final five games of 2017. Garappolo is now locked up long term and an asset to help attract other free agents.
Now fast forward to this offseason and pending free agency.
The 49ers apparently we’re on the verge of acquiring former Buck defensive back, as well as Patriots and Broncos pro bowler and Super Bowl champion, Aqib Talib on Thursday. But apparently, Talib would not agree to a contract extension with San Francisco and the Rams ended up completing the deal with the Broncos.
Lynch shook that off, immediately, and when Richard Sherman became available by being released by the rival Seahawks Friday, it took San Francisco less than 24 hours to get the deal done. Reports have surfaced that on Saturday afternoon, Lynch a former Stanford defensive back met face-to-face with fellow Cardinal DB Sherman for 5 hours. And as Sherman negotiated for himself, man-to-man with Lynch, they got it done.
— John Lynch (@JohnLynch49ers) March 11, 2018
And the creative deal that includes incentives and potentially a chunk of guaranteed money, was satisfactory to both sides. So, Sherman never left the building Saturday to take other trips/visits. And, the message continues to be sent to the NFC West, and rest of the league: we are not a “Jim Tomsula/Chip Kelly” joke any longer.
Have the 49ers won the division, much less a playoff game? No.
Do they still have to get other pieces for their roster? Of course.
However no one is laughing at John Lynch being hired without any experience anymore.
The 49ers fans are pumped up for the upcoming season already, and they should be.
John Lynch and his staff have made them dramatically better before their second draft or the second training camp under his watch season has even started.
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