The Deebo Samuel saga has gone back and forth ahead of the NFL draft and although reports have noted that the New York Jets are interested in the versatile offensive weapon, the San Francisco 49ers must obviously be willing to let him go.
An April 26 live update from NFL insider Jeremy Fowler reinforced the stance that the Niners are not interested in doing so at this time. Bleacher Report relayed his comments, which occurred on a morning segment of ESPN’s “SportsCenter.”
ALL the latest Jets news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Jets newsletter here!
Fowler: ‘They Really Do Not Want to Trade’ Samuel
Here is what Fowler told viewers after he “checked in with people in the 49ers organization.” The insider stated:
They said John Lynch’s words are very sincere, that in reality, they couldn’t break the huddle last year without Deebo Samuel. He was their team MVP. People I’ve talked to, that’s how they speak of him. He’s very highly thought of there, so they really do not want to trade him. They’re not highly motivated to do so. It just comes down to, in the next 48 hours are they going to get a deal that they can’t refuse before that first round. The New York Jets are motivated to get pass-catching help. They got the fourth and 10th overall picks; perhaps they could package something. There is interest, but I’m told even teams that have called believe that the 49ers are likely not going to deal him. The [Detroit] Lions have some interest. Green Bay Packers have a little bit of interest. Something has to give. I’m told Deebo Samuel is really dug in here, he wants to be out, so it just depends if the 49ers feel like this is going to get ugly before it gets better and let’s move on.
“The people I talked to this morning say there’s a good chance he gets traded,” Jeremiah told Eisen — via 49ers journalist Sterling Bennett. “It changed over the last 2 days from: ‘I don’t think the #49ers would ever do it,’ to ‘I think there’s a good chance they trade him.”
Follow the Heavy On Jets Facebook page, where you can weigh in on all the latest NYJ-related daily content, analysis, features and more!
Who to Believe?
NFL draft week is synonymous with conflicting rumors and speculation but this is what we know about the potential of a Samuel trade.
1. The Wide Receiver Wants Out
The exact reasoning behind the fallout is unclear — financial value, usage in Kyle Shanahan’s offense, personal disagreements with the staff — but Samuel’s camp has not been shy about the wide receiver wanting out of San Francisco.
2. The 49ers Organization Would Prefer to Keep Samuel
Niners GM John Lynch opened up about the Samuel situation. “I can’t ever imagine wanting to move on from Deebo,” Lynch told reporters. “You put yourself through the exercises of — even though we don’t have a first-round pick — you have to be thorough in this process and prepare for everything. So, you go through it and do that. He’s just too good of a player.”
He added that he was a “game-changing player” before continuing: “We’ve got nothing but love for him and nothing but appreciation for what he’s brought, but you just don’t let guys like that walk. So, I can’t envision a scenario where we would [trade him].”
3. Jets Love Samuel but Joe Douglas Does Not Overpay
It appears the only way to trade for Samuel would be to overpay significantly based on the quotes from Lynch and Fowler. No one knows how high that price tag would be.
Would the No. 10 overall selection be enough? Would it take a package that includes 10 among other picks, as Fowler alluded to? Would it take No. 4 overall?
As we know, Jets GM Joe Douglas does not budge on his predetermined number — for anybody. He did not offer a first-round pick for Tyreek Hill so why do so for Samuel? Yes, the 49ers star is younger but his track record is far less consistent.
Based on the cost and the willingness from both sides to compromise, it feels like Samuel is staying put in San Francisco for the 2022 campaign — whether he likes it or not.