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NFL free agency 2021: 49ers will do ‘everything we can’ to re-sign Kyle Juszczyk

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The San Francisco 49ers are on the doorstep of what could end up being a rather significant offseason in the trajectory of their offense. With rumors swirling around the future of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, the unit does seem like it’s in a state of flux. That said, one piece to that puzzle that the organization seems intent on keeping is fullback Kyle Juszczyk, who is set to enter unrestricted free agency once the new league year opens up in mid-March. 

When GM John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan got together back in 2017, inking Juszczyk to a four-year, $21 million contract — a record-breaking deal for a fullback — was one of their first orders of business. As we’ve seen since that deal was executed, Juszczyk has proven to be a key piece to Shanahan’s offense and much more than just a blocker. He’s been used as a goal-line rusher, a pass-catching threat and a critical wrinkle as Shanahan continues to be held as one of the league’s best play-callers on offense. 

Given how important Juszczyk has shown to be for San Francisco, it’s no surprise to see the Niners brass be so upfront about their desire to keep him. 

“He’s a unique person and a unique football player because he does so many things for you,” John Lynch noted earlier this offseason, via Nick Wagoner of ESPN. “He’s important to us and we’re going to make every effort to try to keep him here. I’m sure there’ll be competition and we understand that, but Kyle’s a real important player to this football team and we’ll do everything we can to keep him here.”

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With that unique skill set that Lynch described, it’s not going to be too much of a shock to see teams lining up to sign Juszczyk once free agency kicks off, which is similar to 2017 when the 49ers gave him that massive deal. The five-time Pro Bowler will turn 30 in late April, which likely gives him one last chance at a big payday on the free-agent market. 

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Last season, Juszczyk totaled 266 yards from scrimmage and a career-high six touchdowns. Over the course of his tenure with the 49ers, the fullback has averaged an impressive 8.8 yards per touch. That usage is noteworthy and Juszczyk even said as much earlier this offseason when he admitted it “is tough to imagine a different offense that would utilize me the way I would here.” 

That may give San Francisco even more of an edge at the negotiating table in a few weeks, but they’ll liklely have some serious competition for Juszczyk’s services going forward. 


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