4949 Centennial Boulevard, Santa Clara. Head coach Jim Harbaugh and his staff are feverishly at work, preparing for a prospective Super Bowl run, while general manager Trent Baalke is nearby making sure the San Francisco 49ers have just as good a chance, if not better, next year.
Since these two have joined forces in the front office’s decisions, the 49ers have been in a constant state of ascension.
They’ve gone from a below .500 team, last at 6-10 in 2010, to three straight seasons with double-digit wins and playoff berths. That is a historic mark for a new head coach within this franchise, which is saying something if you recall that gentle white-haired man in the '80s—the one branded “the Genius.”
On top of trimming up the roster and getting the best of returning players, they’ve infused a lot of new talent. Many of these players have not only provided great depth, but some have also stepped up as marquee players for the team. There is a harmonious blend of youth, talent and experience.
It’s easy to see that this is a team that is not only built to win now but is built for the long haul.
Of course, during this constant evolutionary process, there have been a lot of tough decisions that had to be made. In the competitive environment they’ve cultivated, along with their structural philosophy, it is very hard for players to stick around. San Francisco is always rubbing two nickels together while trying to get the absolute best bang for its buck.
With deals upcoming and changeover at several positions, 2014 projects to be the 49ers' greatest challenge yet.
The onus is on the 49ers to get creative with savings and become a bit more flexible with their monetary philosophy while keeping their eye on the prize. Remember, it’s not just about surviving the offseason, it is about trying to improve across the board.
The following will provide an overview of how the 49ers can save money, optimize player talent and cut dead weight in the offseason.