The Clash asked a similar question in their 1981 hit. The 49ers have twelve players scheduled to be free agents this offseason, including three who were vital to their success in 2013, Anquan Boldin, Donte Whitner and Phil Dawson. It is very unlikely that all three will be able to return for 2014 unless they agree to take less money than the open market is likely to offer.

So who should stay, and who should go?

"Absolutely!" That is often the reaction of most when asked if the 49ers should bring back Anquan Boldin. After all, he was named team MVP after leading them in receptions and holding down the receiver position while Michael Crabtree rehabbed his offseason achilles injury.

The primary question with Boldin is what it will take to bring him back. The reason he ultimately ended up in San Francisco was his unwillingness to reduce his salary from $6 million to stay with Baltimore. Why would be be willing to reduce it now? Boldin, who will turn 34 prior to next season, is likely to seek a contract similar to the one signed by Reggie Wayne in 2012 when he too was 34. That contract called for Wayne to receive $17.5 million over 3 years and included a signing bonus of $6.5 million.

If the 49ers and Boldin could agree on a deal of this type, he should stay. The $6.5 million signing bonus gives Boldin a bump in pay for 2014 while allowing the 49ers to massage the cap hit to meet their salary structure. In Wayne's situation, Indianapolis was able to get a low cap number of $3.167 million the first year, that would be a steal for the 49ers.

Should Boldin look for more, the 49ers should say, "Thank you for your service Anquan. We wish you the best in your remaining career."

At receiver the 49ers have Quinton Patton ready to step in opposite Michael Crabtree, and can spend a first or second round pick on another receiver that they can bring along as the season progresses. The 49ers offense uses more than 2 receivers on only about 25% of its plays and that is unlikely to change unless Jim Harbaugh decides to revamp his offensive philosophy this offseason.

The more urgent need may be at safety. Do the 49ers want to put a rookie opposite Eric Reid in only his second year? This draft class is not as deep at the position as it was last season, and while the 49ers could pick up a good player it is likely that it will take a year to develop and be ready to start in the NFL.

The 49ers could take the money that would otherwise go to Boldin to keep Donte Whitner. By putting the franchise tag on him they would buy themselves a year with a proven veteran while being able to develop the rookie to take over in 2015 just as they did with Dashon Goldson in 2012. The franchise tag for a safety in 2014 is likely to be around $6.9 million.

That brings us to Phil Dawson. I must admit I was a little surprised to find that five kickers tried more field goals than Dawson in 2013. Jim Harbaugh loves his kickers, or so it seems, and after struggling through 2012 with David Akers the acquisition of Dawson had to make the coach breath a bit easier. When asked about Dawson's contract during the season, Harbaugh responded by saying, "Pay the man."

Dawson earned every bit of his $2.35 million salary in 2013, but what will he be looking for moving forward? After suffering through losing season after losing season in Cleveland, it is likely that he will be willing to take something in the same range to stay with a winning franchise. That would be a big deal for a team that likes to lean on it's kickers as much as the 49ers do.

Put yourself in the position of 49ers General Manager. How would you manage the situation with these three? If you had to replace one of them who would it be and why?