The San Francisco 49ers Pro Bowler Deebo Samuel might become the latest star wideout to change teams this offseason. According to multiple reports, Samuel wants to be traded and has recently made a formal trade request to the 49ers.
Samuel himself confirmed the news to ESPN’s Jeff Darlington on Wednesday, although the reasons behind his trade request remain unknown.
The most likely reason for Samuel’s decision is the lack of a new contract. The 26-year-old player has one year left on his rookie deal and is reportedly looking to take advantage of the exploding wide receiver market. San Francisco is interested in extending the South Carolina prospect but not at the price he has in mind.
Another reason Samuel might be looking to leave San Francisco is the way he was used in 2021. With a lack of depth in the running back position, the 49ers leaned on Samuel to be the main contributor in the backfield on top of his tasks as a wideout. But while the player was willing to step up as a dual-threat last season, it isn’t something he would entertain in the long run.
As of now, it seems unlikely that the 49ers will entertain bids for their star wide receiver. According to the reports, the first reaction is that it would take a “crazy” offer for the franchise to even consider dealing Samuel. However, they are definitely not in a hurry, considering they still have him under contract for one more year and can use the franchise tag if needed in 2023.
Samuel had a breakthrough season in 2021 that saw him catch 77 passes for 1,405 receiving yards and six touchdowns. He also had 364 yards and eight TDs on the ground, resulting in All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors.