Once again, like they were with Darrelle Revis and Peyton Manning in offseasons before, the 49ers were connected to two of the higher profile players, which also happened to come at the top-two needs positions for San Francisco. But once again, it was likely due diligence and nothing more.
The players? Cornerback Darrelle Revis and wide receiver DeSean Jackson: two multi-time Pro Bowlers who were released from their respective teams, looking for new homes.
They also had their pick of any type of team—any type of situation.
Just to provide a quick overview, Revis and Jackson could’ve followed the money, going to the highest bidder. Or they could’ve taken a one- or two-year deal with a serious contender, like the Denver Broncos, Seattle Seahawks or even, yes, the San Francisco 49ers.
Revis found something in the middle with the New England Patriots, who paid him well and are close to winning but really don’t have all the components anymore. It’ll be interesting to see how far they go with him, considering they weren’t just a lockdown corner away. After all, Aqib Talib was a solid player for them.
Jackson stayed in the NFC East division, went to a rival and got a handsome payday in the process.
The common factor for both Revis and Jackson is they’re both earning an attractive sum of money for their services in 2014. And at their respective salaries, there is absolutely no way the 49ers would have been able to afford them. This is why it was likely rumors and due diligence over anything else.
San Francisco, while perhaps interested, never even got a visit with either player.
Now, could the 49ers have benefitted from these players? Absolutely, yes. Did they need to acquire either? No. In fact, it’s a far better thing that they didn’t make a hard push for either one. Simply put, they couldn’t afford either one. They’ve got their own players to pay, including quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Blindly bringing in Darrelle Revis or DeSean Jackson would’ve greatly endangered the team’s ability to sign its own.