Former Commanders LB Viewed As Bargain Option for San Francisco 49ers

Washington Commanders, Cody Barton, San Francisco 49ers, Dre Greenlaw

Getty Cody Barton with Jack Del Rio.

The Washington Commanders and San Francisco 49ers completed a trade before the NFL Trade Deadline and now, a former Commanders linebacker could help them next season. With linebacker Dre Greenlaw tearing his Achilles, the 49ers will need to address the linebacker position this offseason. It’s uncertain how long the recovery process will take for Greenlaw as he recovers from this tough injury.

Gary Davenport of Bleacher Report listed players who could help the 49ers as they’re in bad cap shape, currently -$11.9 million. Of the possible players they could target, Davenport writes that Cody Barton of the Commanders could help them.

“The Niners have one of the best linebacker duos in the league in Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw, but the latter’s torn Achilles puts his availability for the beginning of the 2024 season very much in doubt.

“Barton amassed 120 tackles each of the last two years and should be available for a reasonable amount after making $3.5 million in 2023.”

Barton, drafted in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft, is an unrestricted free agent this offseason. He started in 13 games for the Commanders in 2023, finishing with 67 solo tackles, 121 total tackles, and 1 interception.

Barton is a cheap option and can give them depth as he returns from the injury.

Commanders Should Bring Barton Back

Barton was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks and played for the Washington Commanders in just the 2023 season. After finishing as one of the worst teams in football with a 4-13 record, the organization didn’t leave a great mark on the University of Utah product.

However, new head coach Dan Quinn is regarded as one of the top defensive minds in football and is well respected by his players.

Dallas Cowboys star Micah Parsons spoke about what Quinn means to him, saying the following to Cameron Wolfe of NFL Network.

“I hope those players buy in and play extremely hard for him, and understand that ain’t no one going to love them and care more about them than Dan Quinn. So man, please appreciate his presence, appreciate his greatness, and take care of my guy.”

Having a respected defensive mind could help the Commanders keep around a player of Barton’s caliber.

Dre Greenlaw Will Be Tough to Replace

Replacing Greenlaw will be one of the San Francisco 49ers’ biggest tasks this offseason, among other things. Between that and the Brandon Aiyuk situation, a player they could trade, the 49ers will be busy.

The early signs of Greenlaw’s return are promising. He underwent successful surgery, according to Ian Rapoport of, and will make a full recovery.

“49ers star LB Dre Greenlaw had successful surgery today to repair a torn Achilles, source said. Greenlaw suffered a full tear while running from the sideline onto the field during the Super Bowl, a crushing injury. He will make a full recovery.”

Barton will be an option to watch for the 49ers this offseason. However, the Washington Commanders, who allowed more than 30 points per game last season, will need to keep around cheap defensive players to build their roster.

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