49ers GM John Lynch can't imagine trading WR Deebo Samuel: 'He's just too good of a player'

Deebo Samuel desires a trade out of San Francisco. It's not a request general manager John Lynch wants to honor.

"I can't ever imagine wanting to move on from Deebo," Lynch told reporters Monday. "You put yourself through the exercises of even though we don't have a first-round pick, you have to be thorough in this process and prepare for everything, and as you go through and do that. He's just too good of a player."

Reasons for Samuel's trade request are unclear at this stage. Speculation ranges from the wideout having an issue with his usage in the 49ers offense to perhaps contract concerns. But neither Samuel nor the Niners have laid out the exact reasons.

Lynch declined to get into the details when asked multiple times Monday.

"I know you guys have jobs to do, and everyone's very curious about Deebo and what's going on there," he said. "I would ask for your guys' understanding and a little perspective that I'm not going to talk about that much today, because I don't think that's productive. I don't want to speak on behalf of Deebo and his team, and I think it's non-productive for us to be talking about things."

Samuel has become one of the most dynamic playmakers in the NFL as both a receiver and runner. No one scares the bejeebers out of a defense quite like Deebo when the ball is in his hands. Entering the final year of his contract, Samuel is in line for a long-term extension north of $20 million per year.

In 2021, Samuel caught a career-high 77 passes for 1,405 yards and six touchdowns. Down the stretch, the 26-year-old became a force out of the backfield carrying 59 times for 365 yards and eight scores during his All-Pro season.

With Trey Lance in line to start under center this season, losing a dynamic playmaker like Samuel would be a detriment to not only the young quarterback but the Niners' postseason aspirations.

While Samuel sounds determined to force a trade, Lynch hopes he can change the receiver's mind in the coming days.

"We pride ourselves on our communication with our players," Lynch said. "This is no different. I'm confident we can find the solutions for whatever is going on."

If the Niners are going to trade Samuel, it makes the most sense for San Francisco to make a move before or during the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft as they don't currently have a first-round selection. The question is whether the 49ers will hold onto the hope they can smooth things over with Deebo or eventually acquiesce to his trade desires.

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