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San Francisco 49ers 2021 Fantasy Football Preview

The 49ers offense is primed for fireworks in 2021. Here's a breakdown of the roster for fantasy this season.

It has been a long time since the Super Bowl, and remembering exactly how things left off last year can be a challenge. So, I’ll be writing up a fantasy preview for each NFL team to give us a quick refresher on what happened last year, and what changes took place in the offseason. All fantasy stats will be in ESPN scoring format unless otherwise noted. 

If I missed any change or left out any big notes, throw them down in the comments for me!

What Did They Do Last Year

Yet again, the San Francisco 49ers season was torpedoed by an injury to Jimmy Garoppolo. San Francisco finished 6-10 and still managed the 14th best Pro Football Focus grade on the offensive side of the ball.

The stage is set for San Fran to make an impressive run in 2021. They’ve added center Alex Mack and brought back left tackle Trent Williams in free agency. They drafted Trey Lance at pick No. 3 in the draft, and added Matt Waldman (of the Rookie Scouting Portfolio fame) favorite running back Trey Sermon in the third round. The Niners are getting George Kittle back from injury, and their young receivers Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk have both shown promise already.  

Quarterback
OVR
Rank
PlayerGCOMPATTYDSTDINTATTYDSTDFFPFFP/G
34Nick Mullens102113262,4371212980114.311.4
39Jimmy Garoppolo6941401,096751025064.310.7
42C.J. Beathard66610478760628054.39

That the hodge-podge Niners QBs managed 4,000 yards passing is an impressive feat. Also of note, Nick Mullens threw only one fewer touchdowns than Daniel Jones, and Mullens did so in six fewer games.

Whether the Niners actually let Garoppolo start the season or give the nod to Trey Lance right away, we should be targeting all the fantasy assets from the Bay.

Wide Receivers
PPR
Rank
STD RankPlayerGTGTRECYDSTDSTD PTSSTD PTS/GPPR PTSPPR PTS/G
3432Brandon Aiyuk1297607485124.510.4184.515.38
6060Kendrick Bourne157449667278.75.2127.78.51
9596Deebo Samuel74433391147.76.880.711.53
103105Richie James73523394141.45.964.49.2
126128Mohamed Sanu724171871253.6426
160169Trent Taylor720108608.61.218.62.66
165158Dante Pettis46476111.62.915.63.9
177184River Cracraft3964104.11.410.13.37

San Francisco let Kendrick Bourne go in the offseason, but both Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel will be coming back for 2021. Neither of these young receivers have proven themselves to be a true, stud fantasy option yet, but you should reach a round early with Aiyuk going in the middle of the sixth and Samuel in the ninth. Aiyuk is currently ranked our WR28 in .5PRR with Samuel our WR33.

I’ll note here that Brandon Aiyuk also ran for 77 yards and scored 2 touchdowns on just 6 rush attempts.

Running Backs
PPR RankSTD RankPlayerGATTYDSTDTGTRECYDSTDSTD PTSSTD PTS/GPPR PTSPPR PTS/G
3224Jeff Wilson11126603728131333129.611.8142.612.96
3839Jerick McKinnon148131954633253193.26.7126.29.01
4847Raheem Mostert810452121916156183.710.599.712.46
5960Kyle Juszczyk16176422919202462.63.981.65.1
9190JaMycal Hasty63914818733024.1431.15.18
125122Tevin Coleman628530543408.71.512.72.12
141141Austin Walter1130112703344

This is what we’ve all tuned in for…

While the 49ers finished 15th in rushing yards per ESPN, they finished 3rd in fantasy points scored by running backs per the outstanding FFToday.com stats. We want a piece of this backfield. 

Let’s all do a thought experiment:

Imagine clicking on this link after the Week 2 of the preseason: “Shanahan says Sermon is RB1 After Back Shines in Pre-Season”. 

[end scene]

Is Sermon not in play at the end of the first round in redraft leagues? 

Now we might never read that article, and Sermon might end up getting the Nick Chubb treatment early, but that little experiment, hopefully, showed that Trey Sermon’s up side is a middle-to-late first round redraft pick. 

If you don’t believe Sermon will get the nod, you’re in luck! 

While Sermon’s dynasty ADP has shot from 114 in April to 67 in May, Raheem Mostert’s ADP has dropped about a round (100 to 110) in that same time frame. These guys are both values at the moment. Sermon is our RB25 currently while Mostert ranks RB32.

Tight End
PPR
Rank
STD RankPlayerGTGTRECYDSTDSTD PTSSTD PTS/GPPR PTSPPR PTS/G
1919George Kittle86348634277.19.6125.115.64
3428Jordan Reed104626231447.14.773.17.31
4848Ross Dwelley102419245130.53.149.54.95
9595Charlie Woerner3433603.61.26.62.2

I have to admit I have overestimated George Kittle’s injury history when putting together my ranks this year…

Before missing Week 2 and Week 3, and then Week 9 through Week 15 in 2020, Kittle played in 15, 16, and 14 games the first 3 years of his career. Kyle Shanahan’s offense has plenty of opportunity for the tight end, and Kittle is the most prolific offensive weapon on the roster. Kittle will only see the fourth round of startup drafts if folks, like I did, overthink George’s fragility.

2021 Draft

The Niners traded three first-round picks and a third for the No. 3 pick in the 2021 draft where they selected Trey Lance. We could be looking at another perfect pairing of quarterback to coach, a-la-Kansas City, in San Francisco. 

The Schedule

And now we bring it all home. Perhaps I’ve buried the lead a bit, but the great Warren Sharp of SharpFootballAnalysis.com has the Niners facing the easiest schedule by a long shot.

Additional Notes

The Niners are making moves in the secondary adding Jaquiski Tartt (Safety), Jason Verrett (Corner), and K’Waun Williams. 

What Does It All Mean?!?! (AKA – Bold predictions)

Everyone is too cheap on the Niners so far this offseason. 

Arrow has broken, trying to point up more than possible.
_____

Thanks to FFToday.com for hosting such great stats info!

Thanks to TheHuddle.com for their great Coaching Change Tracker