It is not every day that an NFL MVP winning quarterback becomes available.
Baltimore’s decision to use the non-exclusive franchise tag on Lamar Jackson does just that. The 2019 NFL MVP can now engage in contract talks with the other 31 teams.
Over the last 24-hours there have been several reasons thrown around why Jackson doesn’t make sense for the 49ers. I’ve seen everything from playoff failures to lack of accuracy to size of a new contract.
Here are my five reasons Lamar Jackson makes sense for San Francisco.
1.) Kyle Shanahan
Shanahan once described his perfect quarterback as being able to throw like Drew Brees and run like Lamar Jackson. Jackson would give the 49ers head coach the explosive playmaker he thought San Francisco was acquiring with the selection of Trey Lance in 2021.
2.) Offensive fit
Jackson could seamlessly slide into the 49ers offense. Take a moment and think about the designed runs Shanahan has built in for the quarterback.
In Jackson, San Francisco would get a quarterback who carries the ball like a running back. Of course he has the speed, but what makes Jackson special as a runner is his ability to set up blocks.
An underrated aspect of Jackson’s game is his ability as a passer. His career completion and touchdown percentages are higher than those of Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen. The two have the same interception percentage.
Going from the disjointed passing offense to Kyle Shanahan would make those questions about Jackson’s accuracy a thing of the past.
Joining the 49ers would give Jackson something he’s never had before, weapons.
When Jackson won his MVP the top wide receivers for Baltimore were Marquise Brown and Willie Snead. Yes, the same Willie Snead who spent 2022 bouncing between the 49ers practice squad and active gameday roster.
Adding Jackson to an offense consisting of Christian McCaffrey, George Kittle, and Deebo Samuel would be unfair to the NFL.
The last time San Francisco won the Super Bowl their offense had an NFL MVP at quarterback. That was 28 years ago.
San Francisco has been able to find a certain level of success with lesser quarterbacks. The organization reached the Super Bowl with Colin Kaepernick and Jimmy Garoppolo before falling short.
It’s time for the 49ers to realize they need to make a change, unless they are fine coming up just short year after year.
It was Jed York who famously stated, “We don’t raise NFC Championship banners, we don’t raise NFC Championship banners. We raise Super Bowl banners.” York has yet to raise a banner.
5.) Matthew Stafford
According to sources close to the team, the 49ers were interested in signing Matthew Stafford during the 2021 offseason. Instead, the veteran quarterback landed with Los Angeles, and won the Super Bowl.
San Francisco’s interest in Stafford shows the believes there is a way to fit a high priced quarterback on the roster with Nick Bosa and the rest of their top end talent.