Here's how experts graded 49ers trading Kwon to Saints


The 2020 NFL trade deadline was a pretty quiet one. There weren't any earth-shattering moves, to say the least. 

But 49ers general manager John Lynch did make one move before Tuesday's 1 p.m. PT deadline. The 49ers on Monday made a bit of a surprise move by trading linebacker Kwon Alexander to the New Orleans Saints for linebacker Kiko Alonso and a conditional fifth-round draft pick

NBC Sports Matt Maiocco believes getting a draft pick from the Saints and clearing salary-cap space was a smart move by the 49ers, and colleague Josh Schrock named the 49ers one of his deadline winners for the Alexander move.

What grade should the 49ers get for their trade? Here's what other experts had to say. 

Brad Gagon, Bleacher Report

Grade: B+

Why: "There's some risk here because something could happen to Warner or Greenlaw, but it's a good deal when you consider the fifth-round pick (which could become a 2021 fourth-rounder if Alexander plays enough in New Orleans)."

Josh Edwards, CBS Sports

Grade: A-

Why: "By moving Alexander's contract, it helps create some long-term flexibility for San Francisco to retain key players. In the offseason, they were forced to make a decision between Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner that could have potentially been avoided if Alexander's contract had been off the books."

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Conor Orr, Sports Illustrated 

Grade: C+

Why: "The 49ers get additional draft capital, besting the haul of a 2022 fifth-rounder swap the Jets made with the Steelers for Avery Williamson and also get Kiko Alonso as a throw-in ... Recognizing a clear need for an upgrade, New Orleans pulled in a more athletic, more versatile piece to fit in their defense while the 49ers realistically surveyed the landscape and made a move that will benefit them down the road."

Sheil Kapadia, The Athletic 

Grade: C

Why: "Viewed in isolation, this is a smart trade for the 49ers. They’re strong at linebacker. They’ll save some money. And they pick up a fifth-round pick. But the 49ers get dinged when viewing the wider scope of the Alexander transactions."

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