To all the 49ers fans who were pleading with their team to trade for Browns receiver Josh Gordon last year: They pushed harder than any other team, but it didn't work out.
This according to CBS Sports, which writes this morning that the 49ers were the lead candidate to pull off a trade for the talented but troubled Browns receiver, who ended up leading the league in receiving yards. San Francisco reportedly was offering a second-round pick plus players in the deal. Talks ultimately were squashed by Browns owner Jimmy Haslam.
A Bee source said the 49ers wanted to make the trade but the Browns’ demands were too high, including a demand for two first-round picks. Michael Crabtree was still coming back from an Achilles’ tear, and the 49ers had a dearth of wide receivers at the time.
It's noteworthy that the 49ers would have been negotiating the deal at the same time Aldon Smith was in an alcohol rehabilitation facility for his second DUI. Gordon at the time was one failed drug test away from being suspended by the NFL for a year.
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That failed test occurred this offseason and Gordon currently has a one-year ban. The NFL and NFLPA, however, are working on a revised drug policy that possibly could affect Gordon's punishment.
Smith, meanwhile, ultimately was suspended nine games for multiple infractions. Teammate Ray McDonald also is in danger of a multiple-game ban pending an investigation on domestic abuse.