Extend the man!
There are a number of key players for the San Francisco 49ers that were either signed for only one year or who are on the last year of their contract.
In my mind, there are six players that the 49ers need to re-sign or extend before the start of next season.
Trent Baalke has proven to be quite a tough customer as a general manager for the 49ers. The way he didn't flinch this summer when Gore half-heartedly suggested that he might hold out was telling.
Gore ended up showing up to camp, and then they got a reasonable deal done that benefits both sides.
I'm sure Baalke has a plan for the future, but I'm a bit nervous about the amount of players that will either play for another team next year or that will need to re-sign with the team.
So, without further ado, here is my top six players the San Francisco 49ers need to re-sign before next season.
Don't blitz this guy, he'll make you pay.
Alex Smith. Despite what anyone tries to tell you, the man is actually a huge reason the 49ers are sitting pretty at 6-1.
He leads the league with three fourth-quarter comeback victories. His 104.9 rating in fourth quarters is third in the league.
Remember that pass to Delanie Walker on fourth down in Detroit? It was either do or die, and he made a perfect throw to win the game.
Remember the second half in Philly? Or is it so surreal that you have convinced yourself it was a dream?
In addition to the confidence and poise that have enabled him to come back in those games, he is also deadly when teams bring pressure. His 128.9 passer rating against pressure is second in the league.
It is my opinion that the 49ers should consider extending Alex Smith before the season is over.
Imagine what next year might look like with an entire offseason spent at the team complex poring over film with head coach and fellow football junkie, Jim Harbaugh.
Perhaps Smith isn't a bust, after all.
Carlos Rogers seemed like a concession when we picked him up on a one year, $2.1 million contract over the summer.
With guys like Asomugha and Jonathan Joseph out there when free agency began, Rogers wasn't considered by most to be a top-flight cornerback in the NFL.
Nowadays, Rogers is one of the top two or three cornerbacks in the league.
His three interceptions must be surprising to those who had said he had "hands of stone."
Some credit must go to Vic Fangio, defensive coordinator for the 49ers, who has crafted a diverse scheme that seems to accentuate the players' strengths.
One of the best things for 49ers fans is that Rogers is ecstatic with the way things turned out, and he has given his agent the green light to begin negotiations for an extension.
The 49ers brass should wrap this up quickly and give Rogers a deal that would let him retire in San Francisco.
Oops...Did I do that?
When the team was winning Super Bowls in the 80s, Ronnie Lott was one of the most feared players in the NFL.
His perfectly-timed, monster hits are still talked about fondly by most of us.
He and the other players came up with a term for these kinds of hits—they called it a "woo" hit.
The hits were called "woo" hits because the force of these hits was so strong that everyone in the stadium would say "woo" at the same time.
Dashon Goldson has brought the "woo" back to San Francisco. This past week, he was flagged for one of these thunderous hits, but the league has since affirmed his innocence by not fining him.
Playing alongside newly-acquired strong safety, Donte Whitner, Goldson is having his finest season as a pro.
The 49ers won't get a second chance to wrap up a deal with him like they did in the offseason. Goldson was hampered by injuries last season, and his play reflected it.
The team needs to get a deal done with him, or another team will offer up a contract that is too good for him to pass up in free agency next year.
We miss you, buddy
Joshua Morgan will never be a No. 1 receiver, but he is really good when he gets his hands on the ball.
He runs routes exceptionally well, and he is one of the most dangerous receivers in the league after the catch.
In the West Coast system that Greg Roman is installing in San Francisco, Morgan fits the bill.
Morgan reminds me of another 49er from the glory days—John Taylor. Morgan has those same long strides as he runs, and he can take a simple slant route to the house, just like Taylor.
The only thing you need to know about how important Morgan was to the team before his devastating injury against the Bucs was how his teammates and coaches rushed out onto the field when he was hurt.
In my opinion, the 49ers will wait until after the season to address this signing, but it will be high on their list of things to do.
I don't need no stinking helmet!
Ahmad Brooks is playing better this season than at any other time in his career.
His helmet-less sack of Colt McCoy on the second play of the game typifies the kind of year the 49ers defense if having.
Brooks doesn't blow you away if you only look at him from a stats point of view. He has four sacks this season, including one forced fumble.
But you can't have too many pass-rushers when utilizing a 3-4 defensive model.
It isn't just his pass-rushing that makes him valuable to the team defense, however. He sets the edge for the No. 1 defense against the run.
Nobody runs against the 49ers, and Brooks plays a major role in that distinction.
I'm no front office wizard, but it seems logical to try to extend him rather than leave it up to the free market in the offseason.
He has sparked the turnaround on the ground
Adam Snyder has been one of the most important players on our offense. Please—hear me out.
Chilo Rachal was the starter for the first three games. His play was abominable to anyone who loves the game.
After three games, Adam Snyder was inserted into the right guard position.
Viola! Running game fixed.
In addition to being much more consistent than Rachal, Snyder is gifted in that he can play all five positions on the offensive line if needed.
He has provided much needed stability on the right side of their line, allowing second-year player Anthony Davis, to begin to improve his play.
Since being inserted as the starting right guard, Snyder has helped to anchor a line that has only given up six sacks in the last four games. As a comparison, they had given up 12 in the first three games.
Adam Snyder shouldn't be allowed to become a free agent next season. The 49ers need to lock him up on a multiple-year deal worth $4-5 million a year.