49ers trade TE Derek Carrier to Redskins

The San Francisco 49ers have traded tight end Derek Carrier to the Washington Redskins for a conditional fifth-round pick, according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee.

Carrier, 25, played 11 games for the 49ers in 2014. He made one start and caught nine passes.

Without Carrier, the 49ers’ depth chart looks like this:

1. Vernon Davis
2. Vance McDonald
3. Blake Bell
4. Garrett Celek
5. Rory ‘Busta’ Anderson
6. Xavier Grimble

During head coach Jim Tomsula’s Friday press conference he could not confirm the Carrier trade. Stay tuned for more news as it breaks.

UPDATE: The 49ers just officially announced the trade. Carrier will be a Redskin pending a physical.

This article has 129 Comments

    1. Yet another example koolaide drinkers of the York’s incompetence at everything but moneymaking…The Cowboys are obviously siding with Harbaught on this one (remembering how he pulled his team off the Levi Stadium Practice field on its maiden voyage due to horrendous turf condition in which Harbaugh was severely reprimanded by the Suits..Obviously not letting Romo play due to the above conditions shows Jerry Jones cares more about his players than the York’s do….http://www.bayareasportsguy.com/report-tony-romo-might-not-play-49ers-levis-stadium-turf-condition/

        1. The 49ers already blew a competitive advantage by building the worlds most acoustically quiet stadium, in a location many if its most fanatic fans have a hard time getting to. Why should they care about a few wacked ACLs?

  1. Gotta love it when teams are desperate. A 5th rounder for a guy with 9 career receptions that was picked up as a street FA by the 49ers.

      1. Only downside is the $400K signing bonus the team still has against the cap. But plenty of cap space with Aldon gone, so no biggie.

        1. 400k is peanuts. You save much more filling your roster with an extra 5th round pick.

        2. I wonder how much the trade of Carrier has changed the SC, with the loss of his 2 mill contract.

      2. Actually, there’s a possibility that the Redskins did the robbing here. Carrier’s arrow has been pointing up since last season.

          1. Because they drafted two TEs and believe that McDonald is finally ready to break out?

            1. Vance needs to have a big year. First and foremost, no more of the drops and fumbles!

          2. I think both of you are correct. Which means getting a 5th rounder for a guy they probably would have released otherwise a good bit of business, even if he does go on to play well for the Redskins.

        1. I think it was fair for both sides. They got quality, Niners can stockpile picks and received something instead of cutting him and losing him for nothing.

  2. If you keep 4 TEs, do you keep Anderson or Celek?

    I usually lean towards keeping the guys with more playmaking potential, so I’d probably go Anderson.

    1. You keep Celek, because you think that Busta will make it to the practice squad and he can contribute next year on the cheap.

        1. Well, you’ve seen a lot more of training camp than me as I’ve seen zero, so obviously this is just speculation. But…

          Teams that are desperate for a TE want one who can play soon. Busta is a prospect and needs to develop. He was 2 picks away from being Mr. Irrelevant. I think teams will use their marginal roster spots on known commodities rather than a player than has never played in the NFL and wasn’t part of their training camp. If I’m wrong, I’ll send you a 6 pack.

          1. Same way they use the other tight ends — inline, in a bunch, in the slot or sometimes in the backfield.

            1. Ask a vague question…

              Do you see them using him in a specific role ie route runner or stay home blocker?

              1. 5 man doesn’t allow for a lot of 7 step drop. When Kaep has missed on his deep passes to Torrey are they on 5 step drops?

              2. Not sure if you’ll remember that or not but if he’s over throwing a deep route and is only taking a 5 step drop a common fix would be to change that to a 7 step. However with only 5 men protection you don’t always/usually have enough time for a 7.

  3. Sorry to see Derek go. Glad he has a chance to get meaningful snaps on a new team.

    I won’t be surprised if he turns out to be worth more than a 5th. At least the 49ers got something for him. The last four 5th rounders were Dail, Lynch, Reaser and Pinion.

  4. You all are uneducated. He was sought after by other teams and the fact that it’s a 5th rounder shows that. Bills and Pata had interest in signing him if he was cut, but he was showing out in camp for the 9ers. He had + grades in both the running and passing game. He’s 6’4″ 240lbs and runs sub 4.5. And his contract is vet minimum for the next three years. Oh yeah, he’s also 25. Nice trade for a ream d desperately needing a TE. The pick is also conditional.

  5. Ian Rapoport says Bears and Saints were also asking about Derek Carrier.

    I wonder if this is a signal the 49ers are happy with McDonald’s development. Haven’t heard much about Busta so far in camp.

  6. Apparently it is a 2017 5th round pick, not 2016.

    Also, according to Ian Rapaport the Saints and Bears were also interested. Makes you wonder how much truth there was to him having a virus the past couple of days.

    1. “A 2017 draft pick likely was preferable to Baalke. He already has nine picks in the upcoming draft with three more compensatory selections expected. Earlier this year, the team traded punter Andy Lee to the Browns for a seventh-round pick that also is in 2017.”


      That’s already 9 picks for 2017.

      1. Can’t wait for the talking heads to start complaining about Baalke accumulating draft picks…

    2. He had a common ailment in the NFL that befalls players 48 hours before a trade. It’s called bubblewrapandboxhimup-itis.

  7. we keep 4 TE’s on the 53…

    Rory ‘Busta’ Anderson joining the practice squad…..

    1. Will Busta clear 24 hr waivers? I heard the Cards (or Rams?) were desperate for a TE and would scoop up Anderson.

          1. Would he have to show something in the remaining preseason games for a team to claim him on waivers or later from the practice squad? After all we had a number one draft pick that went a whole season without a reception.

  8. I’m not surprised the 49ers traded a TE. I’m a little surprised who they traded. I thought it would be Celek. This might not be the last of the TE trades with the Saints and Bear still in the market.

    How many TEs will the 49ers carry? I’m guessing 4, but would be surprised at 3 or 5.

    1. B2W, I was surprised it was Carrier too but I guess this means they really like Bell and figure that when Vernon goes, they have speed at WR to stretch the defenses. Re Anderson, as far as other teams wanting him on their 53, I dunno. True, all I have to go with are his college highlights, but there weren’t too many of them and there was a reason for that. One of the last picks in the draft. Someone please tell me what’s special about him?

    2. Celek is a good blocker, and has made some nice catches in the TC. Carrier is a superior pass catcher, but his blocking and durability was less than Celek’s. Hope Celek makes the 53.
      Since the Niners say they are going to run the ball, Celek could contribute, and I agree, 4.

      1. If Busta can contribute to the ST, he could make the 53. However, Busta may be cut to save room for players like Purcell.

  9. Rotoworld: Taylor Mays released by Detroit.
    Lions released S Taylor Mays. He reportedly asked for his release after not playing in Thursday’s preseason game. The Lions are the second team to release him. Mays was signed for the veteran minimum and should resurface as a backup/sub-package safety.

  10. The Native Americans were desperate. 2 TEs went down with season ending injuries, and the replacements were young Juco players and a Raider cast off. Carrier was not a factor because he was always injured, so the Niners got a sweet bonus for an eventual cut and loss. Baalke thinks he can find quality in the 5th, like Pinion and Dial.
    Posters know that I wanted to trade Carrier since July, just not singly. However, I do acknowledge that multiple player deals are rare, and one for one deals are the norm.
    All in all, it was a typical Baalke deal. The Natives got quality and fills a huge need, and Baalke gets to stockpile picks. Hopefully, he will BUNDLE them to move up in the first to grab a blue chipper.

  11. As I recall, Oregoniner, in his hopes and wishes – sort of predicted this – sort of made this call – several days ago. He suggested on last 9er TE trade – that of Cleveland to N England for an OL that would it not have been better if that TE had been traded to Redskins for a draft pick instead.
    Well here you go fan from Oregon; you got your wish the second time around, a TE for a 5th from Skins. What – up North you have some sort of inside pipe line to Santa Clara or what?

  12. Baalke’ TE Trading Post may still be open. At least 2 of the last 3 in Grant’s depth chart won’t make the final cut.

  13. This makes sense.
    Carrier was the only TE on the roster other than VD that could be a starter for another NFL team. McDonald just isn’t very good. Celek isn’t a good enough reciever in today’s NFL to be a starter and Anderson and Bell are both ro Raw.

    1. Agree that Carrier could be a starter on another team. There goes my boy, but Baalke did alright getting a fifth. Not sure what the conditions are?

      1. Cubus….I would have guessed Celek (traded) before Carrier, but with VD, Bell, Busta, VMac, I guess that they had enough speed and so sacrificed Carrier for Celek (who is a pretty good mauler, also showed pretty good flex on his TD last week….I see three more trades….

  14. Getting a fifth round pick for a player that almost certainly would be cut is very good business.

  15. Really liked Carrier, but I don’t believe that his body type was a good fit for what the 49ers need.
    With Tomsula continuing to keep the offense run oriented, our TE’ must have the ability to be better than decent in-line blockers.

    At 240 lbs Carrier fits the mold of a big WR rather than TE. Hope he finds good success in Washington.

  16. Rory Anderson
    244 lbs.

    “Anderson’s athleticism and play speed is what NFL teams dream of when looking for tight ends to threaten vertically and create matchup problems underneath. While he needs to add more weight to his frame, Anderson shows the blocking fundamentals to be considered a legitimate combination tight end in the NFL. Anderson’s biggest concern on draft day and beyond looks like it could be his recurring triceps injuries.”
    – NFL.Com


  17. Love that the little beyotch midget in New Orleans no longer has Graham as his security blanket and plays for a team that is desperate for a viable TE.

  18. Rotoworld’s comments below on the trade, be interesting to see who gets the better of the deal, Baalke or McCloughan, going off of track records I would have to give McCloughan the nod !

    Redskins acquired TE Derek Carrier from the 49ers for a conditional 2017 fifth-round pick.
    The “conditions” are related to playing time and stats. Carrier just turned 25 years old and has absurd measurables, running 4.49 with a 40-inch vertical at 6-foot-3, 240 coming out of Beloit College in 2012. He probably should’ve played over both Vance McDonald and Vernon Davis last year, but wound up handling under 200 snaps. Carrier is a converted wide receiver who earned positive run and pass blocking grades from PFF in 2014. He gives Washington a No. 2 tight end following Niles Paul and Logan Paulsen’s year-ending injuries. We wouldn’t totally rule out the possibility of Carrier pushing always-injured Jordan Reed once he picks up Jay Gruden’s system.

  19. The 3 also rans Grayson, Hundley and Petty have looked sharp in early action so far. Petty’s first game wasn’t as good as the other two but he’s doing well tonight so far.

  20. Maiocco on the Carrier trade:

    “A source told CSNBayArea.com that teams were more attracted to Carrier than Vance McDonald, the 49ers’ second-round pick in the 2013 draft. “

    1. I wonder if that is based on ability, or an expectation of what the 49ers would want in return for the player?

      1. Ability, there is no way the niners could get as much for McDonald. Even while bigger, he’s a slower, less sure handed receiver, who isn’t that great of a blocker. He is miss by Trent based on where he was selected.

        1. “Isn’t that great of a blocker”. He was the highest rated TE in the NFL for blocking last season by PFF. He’s a very good blocker.

          And while he may not run a 4.5 like Carrier, as you noted he’s much bigger (around 270lbs), much stronger (31 reps on bench press), and still runs under 4.7. He’s very athletic for a guy his size.

          Maybe teams were interested in Carrier more than McDonald based on ability, who knows for sure? Carrier certainly looks the more natural pass catcher of the two, so a team looking for a pure receiving weapon may well have been drawn more to Carrier based solely on ability. But my guess would be the 49ers would have wanted more in return for McDonald than a 2017 5th rounder, and the cost (in draft picks) would have been a factor that played into demand for the two players.

          1. Scooter that’s a pleasant surprise.
            Even so I don’t put a ton of stock in that, mostly because his sample size is so small (194 snaps). Couple that with the fact that of the 7 teams he played against, 5 (NYG, Dal, CHI,NO,KC) were ranked 20th or lower in run defense.

            I would be curious to know how he did against St. Louis however? (Denver was such a train wreck of a game it would be hard to fairly judge.)

            Now, while I have belittled his numbers, this does give hope for him, as he had little experience in line blocking in college. And if he can master that it would make him a better fit for our team going forward.

            1. In 2014 Vance had a positive pass block rating in all games that he played and a positive run block rating in all games except the Kansas City game. Against St. Louis he had a pass block rating of 0.1 and a run block rating of 0.8, both of which are neutral scores.

              It is interesting to note, however, that in the KC game, VMac played every offensive snap and that was his lowest rated game (both overall rating and run block rating, which was negative).

              As Scooter mentioned, VMac was the highest rated PFF run blocker in 2014, but he only had 218 snaps (for some perspective, Heath Miller had the highest at 1103, Gronkowski had 846 and Delanie Walker 788).

              1. I should have mentioned that in the games besides KC, VMac played between 19% and 49% of the snaps.

              2. Hi Cubus,

                Like I said the sample size is too small for me.

                He only played in 8 games (194 offensive snaps,I didn’t count his special teams reps), one of which he didn’t record a single offensive snap (one of the STL games). Of the 7 games he got offensive snaps in, only STL and Denver were top 20 in run defense.

                In 2013, with more snaps he graded out as the 48th blocking te (out of 64.) and had 6 games of -1 or greater.

                I’ll give on up defending this point any further and will admit the last years numbers do give hope for the future regardless of sample size.

              3. Its a good point you make though Shoup. Limited sample size does bring into question the validity of the result.

                I suppose on the positive side, if he was the top rated blocker with a limited number of snaps, there is a possibility he could have lapped the field if he’d played a lot more snaps. Either way, he certainly graded out a lot better in his second year than his first, suggesting he showed strong improvement as a blocker.

              4. Blocking in football is a lot like rebounding in basketball: either you can or can’t.

                You don’t get “hot” and get double digit rebounds over a few games. The same goes for blocking.

                McDonald has proven he is a very good blocker, even considering the sample size.

                This is especially impressive, considering he rarely (never?) played inline at Rice.

      2. I would lean more towards the former. VMac has turned into an excellent blocker but has yet to show anything as a pass catcher. Meanwhile Carrier’s arrow as a pass catcher and blocker has been pointing up since last off season, and versatile TEs have always been a popular option for teams.

  21. A 5th in ’17 = a 6th in ’16.
    A 6th for Carrier is fine.
    I think Busta will need to step up in practice and P3/P4 to beat out Celek. PS seems very dicey due to waivers. Celek could bring a 7th/equivilent.
    C’monnnnnnn Bustaahhhh.

    1. Busta will be just fine but he really does need this season to develop expectations should be very low for him this first year. He should be a 4th quarter mop- up player at most this year. He’s a physically gifted athlete that still needs to learn the position, he had very little experience in college.

  22. Is tenure a factor with compensatory picks? For example…

    A team loses two players to free agency. Player A and Player B.

    Player A was on a four year contract. He was signed by another team for $10m.
    Player B was on a one year contract. He was signed by another team for $10m.

    Is the compensatory pick the same?

    I understand the compensatory formula is a semi-secret, but tenure seems like an easily identifiable variable.

    1. My understanding is it is based on the average annual salary. So for example, Iupati and Torrey Smith should cancel each other out at $8M a season.

    2. From something that I’ve read I got the impression that the formula for compensatory draft choices was a closely held NFL secret — much like the penalties for deflating a football or destroying a cell phone.

      1. It is, but teams seem to have worked it out for the most part and their are some sites that also appear to have figured it out (such as overthecap.com). There are other considerations than just average value per year of their contract, but for the most part that is what is believed to be the determining factor.

        Here is overthecap.com’s current estimates of comp picks for next year.


        Expecting 4, 5 and 6 round comp picks for the 49ers.

    1. I bet he is smacking his lips and rubbing his hands together while chortling with glee just thinking about how many ways he can utilize all of Kaep’s skillsets.

          1. No, I think the 3rd & 4th OLBs will be Lemonier and Harold. I was just being silly. Though I’m sure if a team came in with a reasonable offer for Lemonier they’d think about it.

    1. Those experts are going for the best looking product, but it could be the lesser choice. I would submit to you that imported plants look superior, but I have found over the years that imported plants are inferior to the local grown plants. They don’t last long, which is exactly what is needed for the field.The imported material needs to be hardened off because the climate from where it is grown is far different than the Bay Area. Like Luther Burbank said, I firmly believe this area is the chosen spot as far as nature is concerned.
      Also, the soil mix is critical to proper root growth, and the first attempt proved to be deficient. therefore, I would advise them to experiment with various mixes. I would recommend Lake County red lava. Seems to have good results. I have also been pleased with Mendocino sand, but do not know if it is still available. Think I heard about preserving more dune areas. well thats my advice, take it or leave it.

      1. I wish to impart a trick I have used many times to get a lawn to grow quicker.
        I would broadcast a high phosphorous fertilizer on the field just before laying the sod. Phosphorous is not very soluble so it does not translocate very well. Putting fert at the interface puts the phosphorous exactly where it is needed to promote root growth. I would lay it on pretty heavy, but it would be best to experiment with varying amounts to determine the optimal results.

    2. That fiber reinforcement sounds smart, but I do not see why that material could not be used on local sod farms.

      1. The reinforced grass seems to work for the field that Arizona plays on. Maybe it’s more expensive, or the company in Arizona may have a patten on it.

        1. Tifway 419 is a bermuda grass, and they tend to brown out during winter, which is exactly when they play the games, so a ryegrass fescue blend might work as a top seed strategy. Still, if they are constantly replacing the sod, that method may not work.

        1. Looks like the technology is pretty commonplace and is being used around the world, so local sod farms should be able to grow it. The only question is time. It takes at least a couple months to get grow sod from seed, so maybe imported sod should be used until new local sources are developed.

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