Commanders could trade Sam Howell to the 49ers
This is the sort of move that the San Francisco 49ers became renowned for. They take players a little down on their luck and completely galvanize their careers. Kyle Shanahan is also looking for a stable backup to Brock Purdy next season.
Sam Darnold is the current understudy in San Francisco. He signed a one-year deal in 2023 free agency after horrific spells with the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers. Considering his indifferent production when filling in for Purdy this season, it would be a shock if his time with the Niners wasn't short-lived.
Someone like Sam Howell would be an intriguing option for Shanahan. He's arguably got more arm talent than Purdy. He's a willing learner. The coach's scheme is designed to make things easier on quarterbacks - something the former fifth-round selection didn't have the benefit of under Eric Bieniemy during his first - and perhaps only - season as the Washington Commanders starting option under center.
Negotiations could go smoothly between the two franchises. They've struck a deal recently that sent defensive end Chase Young to San Francisco. Of course, new general manager Adam Peters came from the Niners, so it would be easy to find a middle ground in this scenario.
Howell could easily stick around with the Commanders next season. But if those in power draft a rookie and also secure a veteran backup presence to mentor their chosen signal-caller, all bets are off.