San Francisco 49ers

49ers Q&A: Hey, Matt, who are some potential free-agent targets?

Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Sammy Watkins (12) scores a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers during the second half of an NFL football game in Santa Clara, Calif., Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017.
Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Sammy Watkins (12) scores a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers during the second half of an NFL football game in Santa Clara, Calif., Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017. AP

Josh Abbott‏ @pigeon_spurs Potential free agency targets next year? Players or positions?

ANSW: I haven’t done a deep dive on this yet … and, of course, teams still can lock up their own free agents for 2018 … but a cursory glance recently prompted me to come up with the following names:

* DE Ziggy Ansah, Lions. He was drafted by Martin Mayhew in Detroit (See: Tomlinson, Laken) and would fill the “Leo” role for the 49ers. No, he hasn’t been a lights-out pass rusher every season, but lights-out pass rushers don’t become available on the open market.

* DE DeMarcus Lawrence, Cowboys. While Ansah is 28, Lawrence is only 25. He may be heading for a franchise tag, however.

* WR Sammy Watkins, Rams. Kyle Shanahan will be looking for size at this position. Watkins is physical and he already knows the offensive system.

* G Justin Pugh, Giants. The 49ers will want to upgrade the interior of their line at guard, center or both.

* C Weston Richburg, Giants. The 26-year-old’s market value took a hit when he was placed on injured reserve earlier this month following a concussion.

* CB Trumaine Johnson, Rams. His size and strength fit the mold for the type of cornerback the 49ers want in this system. If San Francisco doesn’t re-sign Dontae Johnson, cornerback is a must-get position in free agency.

Perry (49ers 1-10 )‏ @ItsAnthony_Breh Considering how weak this draft class is overall, do you see the 49’ers trading picks into next year’s draft? If so, does that change the way they approach free agency?

ANSW: This is how I see the draft panning out: The 49ers trade their first-round pick to a team seeking a quarterback. That would give San Francisco their trade partner’s first-round pick this year -- which they will use on an offensive lineman -- a mid-round pick this year and a first-round pick next year. (If this comes true I will trumpet this post on full blast. If it doesn’t, this post quietly disappears). I don’t think this would affect their free-agency plan. They need to get a couple of big-ticket items in both free agency and the draft.

Cameron Cornelison‏ @cam_lose100 Looking at 3 factors: worst O line 3 years in a row, a top 5 pick, and Garoppolo due for a huge raise via contract or FT. Is this the perfect opportunity to trade down and pick Joe Staley’s replacement at LT?

ANSW: Cameron gets it.

Brooks Anderson II‏ @BNAmusic88 How important should edge rusher should be to the miners in the next draft? Is there anybody worth taking high?

ANSW: Yes, there will be a couple of good edge rushers. The best, and someone the 49ers might have to get with a Top 5 pick, is N.C. State’s Bradley Chubb. He’s not as physically gifted as Myles Garrett and he’s a little bigger than the ideal “Leo” rusher, but he’s strong, intense and very productive. LSU’s Arden Key and Boston College’s Harold Landry are two others.

luddite‏ @l0rdLuc Who’s playing RT if brown is out now? Please don’t say anyone rhyming with bane zeadles

ANSW: First, the 49ers are optimistic that Brown will play. If he can’t, the lineup may depend on who joins the 53-man roster this week. As it stands now, the 49ers might go with Darrell Williams at right tackle because they need Beadles to be the backup at center and guard. … And why is everyone so down on poor Zane? He was a hero last year when he had to come in and play multiple positions (not at the same time) in a pinch.

Hindenburg49ers ‏ @chans206 Matt, will Kyle Shanahan win as many games (1) coaching the Senior Bowl (high likely hood) as he will in his first NFL season as a HC?

ANSW: Depends. Does he get Baker Mayfield on his squad?

Michael Andrews‏ @49ersMike_NF Why hasn’t Aaron Lynch got any playing time when the team could use his help in the pass rush? He’s been a healthy scratch the last two games per himself.

ANSW: To quote Magneto: Why do you ask questions to which you already know the answers? (49ers not exactly pleased with Lynch; very hard to see him coming back after this season).

Matt Barrows: @mattbarrows, read more about the team at