Photo courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers

Photo courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers

Fred Warner impressed with 49ers’ offseason, excited to get stars back

Jul 25, 2021 at 3:49 PM--

The San Francisco 49ers headed into the offseason with a lot of uncertainty surrounding the roster's future. They exited the 2020 season with nearly 40 players scheduled to become free agents, unrestricted or otherwise, like Trent Williams, Kyle Juszczyk, Jason Verrett, and K'Waun Williams.

Those are a lot of potential losses. And, at first, San Francisco seemingly didn't have a lot of salary-cap space to work with.

There wasn't a mass exodus or a roster pudge, though, and the 49ers managed to find the money needed to bring back nearly everyone they wanted. There were only a few losses, like wide receiver Kendrick Bourne leaving for the New England Patriots.

Linebacker Fred Warner joined 95.7 The Game on Friday and was asked about management's ability to keep the team intact, and potentially prep for another Super Bowl run. It was a testament to the leadership of general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan.

"I know that was for sure a point of emphasis heading into the offseason," Warner told Damon Bruce and John Dickinson. "We wanted to try to keep as many guys as possible who were going into free agency. John, Kyle, everyone involved in that process, they've done an outstanding job, and they know the talent that we have within the team.

"There's no reason not to try to keep the players that we already have. We've just got to keep guys healthy. Everybody's really hungry to get after it, so I'm really happy that we were able to keep a lot of those players."

RELATED Warner says Ford looks great, expects pass rusher to give 49ers a 'huge advantage'

Not only were the 49ers able to hold onto most of their key players this offseason, but the team should see the return of several others who were injured last season. For example, pass rusher Nick Bosa was a significant loss felt throughout the defense in 2020. Warner has shared that he expects Dee Ford to contribute and be a "huge advantage" on defense.

Jimmy Garoppolo, George Kittle, and Deebo Samuel all missed significant time in a historically bad injury-plagued season. So having those players return should provide a significant boost.

San Francisco even managed to add to its depth in some areas with the signings of Samson Ebukam, Maurice Hurst Jr., and Zach Kerr on defense.

"It gives me great confidence, honestly," Warner shared. "Like you mentioned, having those guys back, who we missed last season. We missed Bosa a lot. We missed Dee Ford. Guys like that.

"We've added huge depth at that position or just the D-line in general. Bringing back a ton of guys in the backend. I'm really excited. We all have the right mindset, and we're going to really go hard at the start of training camp here next week."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Warner below.

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