49ers

49ers deal Kilgore to Dolphins in exchange of draft picks

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USATSI

49ers deal Kilgore to Dolphins in exchange of draft picks

The 49ers on Thursday traded center Daniel Kilgore to the Miami Dolphins one day after signing free-agent center Weston Richburg.

The 49ers and Dolphins swapped seventh-round picks in this year's NFL Draft. The 49ers send Kilgore and the ninth pick of the seventh round (No. 227 overall) to the Dolphins in exchange for the fifth pick of the seventh round (No. 223 overall).

Kilgore signed a three year, $11.75 million contract with the 49ers in February. Kilgore was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason.

The 49ers signed Richburg as a free agent on Wednesday, and did not envision Kilgore making the switch to compete for a starting job at guard. Richburg opened the past three seasons as the starting center for the New York Giants. Richburg signed a five-year contract worth up to $47.5 million, including a $9.3 million signing bonus.

With the trade of Kilgore, the 49ers could be back in the free-agent market.

Kilgore goes to the Dolphins, who released veteran center Mike Pouncey on Thursday to save $7 million in cap room.

“On behalf of the entire organization I want to thank Dan for everything he contributed to this team and the Bay Area community over the last seven seasons,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said in a statement. “When Kyle and I arrived last offseason, we knew right away that he was a well-respected leader in the locker room and a true professional. We are pleased to be able to help find Dan a great situation to be able to continue his career, and we wish him and his wife, Megan, the very best.”

Kilgore, 30, came to the 49ers in 2011 as a fifth-round draft pick. He started 39 of the 74 games in which he appeared in his career, including 29 the past two seasons.

49ERS 2018 DRAFT PICKS
1. First round: No. 9 overall (own pick)
2. Second round: No. 59 overall (New Orleans pick acquired in 2017 draft-day trade)
3. Third round: No. 70 (own pick)
4. Third round: No. 74 overall (Chicago pick acquired in 2017 draft-day trade)
5. Fourth round: No. 128 overall (Pittsburgh pick acquired in 2017 trade of Vance McDonald)
6. Fifth round: No. 143 overall (N.Y. Jets pick acquired in 2017 trade of Rashard Robinson)
7. Sixth round: No. 184 (own pick)
8. Seventh round: No. 223 overall (Miami pick acquired in 2018 trade of Daniel Kilgore)
9. Seventh round: No. 240 overall (Kansas City pick acquired in 2016 trade of Kenneth Acker)

*-Second round, own pick, traded to New England for Jimmy Garoppolo
*-Fourth round, own pick, traded to Denver for Kapri Bibbs and a 2017 fifth-round pick
*-Fifth round, own pick, traded along with Vance McDonald to Pittsburgh for 2018 fourth-round pick
*-Seventh round, own pick, traded along with Kilgore to Miami for 2018 seventh-round pick

Why Greg Cosell believes Jimmy Garoppolo needs work on his 'quarterback feet'

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USATSI

Why Greg Cosell believes Jimmy Garoppolo needs work on his 'quarterback feet'

Greg Cosell, a senior producer at NFL Films, believes 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo “has a chance to be a top-level quarterback.” But there remains room for improvement from the player the 49ers awarded a franchise-record contract in the offseason.

Garoppolo has a quick release and can throw at a number of different arm angles to avoid oncoming pass-rushers. And while his accuracy underneath was unquestioned during his 5-0 run as the 49ers’ starter last season, most of the time, his deep throws did not reach the target.

Garoppolo completed just 4 of 16 attempts to targets 20 yards or more down the field last season for 134 yards and no touchdowns with no interceptions, according to Pro Football Focus.

[RELATED: Greg Cosell: Kyle Shanahan does one thing 'better than any coach in the NFL']

During the offseason program, Garoppolo appeared to struggle on his deep throws, too. Cosell, a guest on the 49ers Insider Podcast, spoke about Garoppolo’s mechanics.

“Because he has very quick feet, I think people just assume he has great feet all the time when he delivers the ball,” Cosell said. “There’s a difference between having quick, athletic feet and having really good quarterback feet. And I think he needs to work on the quarterback feet part.

“I think guys who have that kind of snap delivery, sometimes they don’t step exactly to their throw and they throw a little bit off-balance, and that could really impact your accuracy to a significant degree. So my guess is those are the kinds of things they’ve worked on. Those are tweaks. I don’t think it will prevent him from being a really good player.”

Garoppolo appeared in six games with five starts last season after the 49ers acquired him for a second-round draft pick in a trade with the New England Patriots. Garoppolo completed 120 of 178 pass attempts (67.4 percent) for 1,580 yards and seven touchdowns with five interceptions.

Cosell said it is important for all quarterbacks to use consistent mechanics when making throws from a clean pocket.

“Think of a major league pitcher,” Cosell said. “They theoretically should throw the ball the same way every time. So should a quarterback unless the defense dictates otherwise. If the defense doesn’t dictate otherwise, the throws should look the same.”

Greg Cosell: Kyle Shanahan does one thing 'better than any coach in the NFL'

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AP

Greg Cosell: Kyle Shanahan does one thing 'better than any coach in the NFL'

There is a lot of hope surrounding the 49ers entering the 2018 season.

Much of that is because of Jimmy Garoppolo.

Much of that also is because of Kyle Shanahan.

"Kyle is one of the most innovative and creative offensive minds in football," cornerback Richard Sherman said back in mid-March after he signed with the 49ers.

On the most recent episode of the 49ers Insider Podcast with Matt Maiocco, NFL Films senior producer Greg Cosell offered some high praise for San Francisco's head coach.

"When you look at a Kyle Shanahan offense, I think the thing that stands out the most -- that he does better than any coach in the NFL -- is the fusion between the run game and the pass game," Cosell said. "The run game and the pass game with their play-action concepts look exactly the same.

"And it's very, very difficult for defenses to differentiate the two very often until it's too late. And when you have a quarterback like Garoppolo -- who tends to be a quick decision-maker, a quick processor, he has a very quick compact delivery and then the ball gets out -- I think that just makes it even more difficult."

The 49ers won all five of Garoppolo's starts last season and put up 26, 25, 44 and 34 points in the last four games, respectively. Garoppolo was rewarded with a five-year, $137.5 million deal ($74.1 million guaranteed) -- which drastically increases the expectations.

Garoppolo and Shanahan could become one of the top head coach-quarterback duos for many years.

"When you talk to defensive coaches around the league, they will talk about Kyle Shanahan as one of the two or three of the best in the league when it comes to offensive design and game planning," Cosell added.