49ers Notes: Cousins, Deebo, Gipson, Green

No matter how successful the 49ers become, we cannot seem to move past “what if?” scenarios involving bigger-name QBs. Although Tom Brady is retired (for the time being, at least), Kirk Cousins made a second free agency defection. The former Kyle Shanahan Washington pupil received a $100MM practical guarantee from the Falcons, tying him to the team for at least two seasons. Atlanta’s Michael Penix Jr. pick raised the most eyebrows of any in the draft (and stunned Cousins), and one GM said (via the Washington Post’s Jason La Canfora) the Falcons do not choose Penix at No. 8 if they do not believe a Cousins trade destination will emerge. Another GM viewed the Penix pick as a path for Cousins to, at long last, reunite with Shanahan in San Francisco.

It would cost the Falcons $37.5MM in dead money to trade Cousins before June 1 next year, and while one of the GMs who spoke to La Canfora the NFC South team would likely be willing to eat dead money to move the high-priced starter (presuming Penix is ready), the 49ers passing on a Brock Purdy extension to bring in a QB ahead of his age-37 season would be quite the development. Jed York has spoken of a Purdy extension, though La Canfora posits the former Mr. Irrelevant’s asking price could point Shanahan back to Cousins.

The 49ers made early preparations to sign Cousins in 2018, before their Jimmy Garoppolo extension, but Shanahan has long been a fan — to the point the 49ers were willing to offer No. 2 overall for the then-Washington QB in 2017. While dot connecting makes sense after the surprising Penix pick, several hurdles appear in the path to Cousins joining the 49ers this late in the game. Here is the latest out of San Francisco:

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