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Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports


49ers insider: I would be surprised if Brandon Aiyuk isn’t signed to a new deal

Apr 11, 2024 at 2:29 PM


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As expected, the most significant storyline surrounding the San Francisco 49ers this offseason revolves around the contract negotiations with star wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk. There hasn't been much official chatter on that front aside from general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan assuring reporters that every effort is being made to retain Aiyuk.

That hasn't stopped the rampant speculation from the media, with reports of interest from teams like the Jacksonville Jaguars and Pittsburgh Steelers, as well as former teammate Kendrick Bourne attempting to recruit Aiyuk to the New England Patriots.

"I promise you, nothing's going on there," Lynch assured reporters in March when addressing the trade rumors.

While some speculate that the 49ers may be forced to part ways with Aiyuk due to financial constraints, a narrative that isn't necessarily accurate, one team insider remains confident that a deal will eventually be reached. Nonetheless, the upcoming draft could alter the course of negotiations.

"I do think that they will get something done with him eventually, but just as we talked about two years ago around this time with Deebo Samuel, the first round of the draft is kind of key," Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area stated on KNBR's "Murph & Markus" show. "You never know where things are going."

San Francisco's first selection in the upcoming draft is the No. 31 overall pick, making it possible for a team to approach the 49ers with an enticing offer for Aiyuk. However, any deal would likely need to be substantial.

Moreover, with a strong wide receiver class entering the draft, the 49ers may opt to secure a replacement with one of their 10 selections. This abundance of options could influence the 49ers' decisions and the stance of teams interested in Aiyuk. Interested parties might feel less pressure to give up too much for Aiyuk while paying him significant money when there might be viable rookie options.

Maiocco notes that he can envision the 49ers fielding calls about Aiyuk during the draft's first round, though this does not guarantee any significant developments. The team recognizes the chemistry that has developed between Aiyuk and quarterback Brock Purdy, and maintaining that relationship might be vital to the team's success.

"That's huge," Shanahan emphasized in March. "I mean, it's hard to be successful at quarterback if you don't have real good receivers. So it starts there with Brandon, and I think that's real big for Brock in his future, making sure we got a good group for him going forward."

While the 49ers have indicated Aiyuk is part of their long-term plans, fans may need to wait until later in the offseason for a resolution. The team typically finalizes key contract extensions closer to training camp in late July. Last year, an agreement with defensive end Nick Bosa was reached just days before the start of the regular season.

"I would be really surprised if the 49ers don't try to make this thing work with Brandon Aiyuk, that they don't ultimately arrive at a long-term solution for him," Maiocco continued. "But it's going to take a little bit of time. But I think everybody can kind of breathe easy once the first round of the NFL Draft comes and goes and Brandon Aiyuk is still on the team.

"So that would be, really, the only way something's going to happen, I think, with Brandon Aiyuk, as far as him not remaining with the 49ers, would have to be some sort of blockbuster trade on Day 1 of the NFL Draft."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Maiocco below.




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