This morning, the San Francisco 49ers re-signed starting right tackle Anthony Davis to a five-year extension for $37.295 million with $17 million guaranteed. 49ers General Manager Trent Baalke must have Jedi like mind powers, because he almost stole the idea right from my head. To the normal person, that is a huge chunk of dinero. So much money that if I was offered such a contract, I would have signed the ol’ John Hancock, retired immediately and thrown my name into the Sacramento Kings ownership ring. But for the 49ers, this was as savvy a signing as you can get for a twenty-three year-old starting offensive lineman.
Averaging just over $7 million per year, Davis is a top-5 paid right tackle, but the 49ers did not break the bank for him. According to Pro Football Focus, he was the third ranked right tackle in the NFL and he’s still only 23! Other right tackles in the NFL that make more than him, you ask? Doug Free, Gosder Cherilus, Phil Loadholt, and David Stewart. Yeah…I’ll take Anthony Davis…remember he’s only 23! The 49ers’ main priority is to keep their young, extremely talented nucleus together and this is step numero uno in locking those guys up. I mean, I’m two years older than Davis.
Davis entered the league in 2010 as the 11th overall pick. In his first two seasons he had some growing pains, but since Jim Harbaugh took over he has been one of the best right tackles in the NFL on arguably the best offensive line in the NFL. Once the Niners sign Mike Iupati to a lucrative long-term contract, four of the five starting offensive linemen on the 49ers will be secured for the foreseeable future.
Harbaugh loves to run the ball and now that he has his starting QB for the next decade in Colin Kaepernick, being able to pound the rock and protect his QB are the top priorities especially in a division with dominant pass rushers with the Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams, and the poor Arizona Cardinals.
It seems that every move the 49ers are making has an eye on the present and future. 49er fans should be welcoming every deal with open arms; I know Kaepernick loves it.