We’re seeing some early trends for the new regime as the free agency avalanche has been unleashed on Santa Clara.

1. Kyle Shanahan enjoys familiarity.

  • WR Pierre Garçon
  • QB Brian Hoyer
  • LB Malcolm Smith (coached by Shanahan’s DC, Robert Saleh)
  • WR Aldrick Robinson

2. They must not think much of Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains or quarterbacks coach Dave Ragone.

Otherwise, why would they sign Matt Barkley one day after signing Hoyer? And that leads to the obvious question: Are they done? Not done with free agency, done signing former Bears quarterbacks.

I swear I was just messing around this morning.

Other than coming from the same team, you can see the logic in signing these two particular quarterbacks. Hoyer is 31 and has experience with Shanahan’s offense, while Barkley is 26 and flashed some upside at the end of last season. However, Barkley’s stoke rose and fell over a two-week span to an extent that’s rarely seen in any line of business.

And that’s where, for fun, I decided to take a suggestion from a couple friends.

Here’s a list of games John Lynch called for Fox in 2016:

  • Week 1: Packers/Jaguars
  • Week 2: Cowboys/Redskins
  • Week 3: 49ers/Seahawks
  • Week 4: Seahawks/Jets
  • Week 5: Falcons/Broncos
  • Week 6: Eagles/Redskins
  • Week 7: Saints/Chiefs
  • Week 8: Redskins/Bengals
  • Week 9: Panthers/Rams
  • Week 10: Falcons/Eagles
  • Week 11: BEARS/Giants
  • Week 12: Cardinals/Falcons
  • Week 13: Rams/Patriots
  • Week 14: Redskins/Eagles
  • Week 15: Packers/BEARS
  • Week 16: Cardinals/Seahawks
  • Week 17: Cowboys/Eagles
  • Divisional: Seahawks/Falcons

Let’s look at how the Bears did in Weeks 11 and 15.

Week 11: Jay Cutler completed 17-of-30 for 252 yards, with 1 touchdown and 1 interception (Bears lost 22-16)

Week 15: Matt Barkley completed 30-of-43 for 362 yards, 2 touchdowns and 3 interceptions (Bears lost 30-27)

Granted, Shanahan would probably have final say over quarterbacks (if not most areas of the roster). But if Shanahan already liked Barkley to a certain extent, and Lynch was really high on him after he almost beat Green Bay while Lynch was calling the game, maybe that was the extra nudge the front office as a whole needed to make Barkley a competitive offer.

As for Barkley’s merit as a free agent quarterback, he’s a decent flier as long as they didn’t overbid. His price fell after that Week 15 high, when his 323-yard, 2-TD game (24-for-40) a week later was ruined because he threw 5 picks against Washington. Then he petered out in Week 17 with 125 yards (10-of-14) with no scores and 2 interceptions.

Also, it’s not my money. Or yours. It’s the Yorks’ money, and they have enough to add four free agent quarterbacks if they so choose. But unless all of those things Lynch and Shanahan said about teamwork and character were just coachspeak/GMspeak (which is possible), Cutler is the last guy they should add, and not just because replicating the quarterback room from a 3-13 team isn’t the greatest way to help a 2-14 team get better. Luckily for the 49ers, Cutler had a completely nondescript performance against the Giants in Week 11 which was nothing like Barkley’s supposed star-making performance four weeks later.

About the Author: Insidethe49

Insidethe49 Site Staff

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