A Look At 5 Potential Salary Cap Cuts for the San Francisco 49ers
Jim Harbaugh and Trent Baalke
It’s been a rocky couple of months for the San Francisco 49ers. First, they watched their Super Bowl dreams end on a tipped Richard Sherman pass. Then, they had to watch the Seahawks go on and beat the Denver Broncos at MetLife Stadium, something that had to be sobering for them considering they’re built similarly to Seattle and had to have liked their chances against the Broncos. Then, franchise QB Colin Kaepernick came out and said that Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler’s newly-signed contract will be the baseline of his contract demands with the 49ers. After all of this, word leaked that the 49ers had discussions with the Cleveland Browns about trading Head Coach Jim Harbaugh with Harbaugh entering the final year of his contract and the team dragging their feet to give him an extension.
Needless to say, it’s been a turbulent start to the offseason. They enter the offseason with aging players at key positions (Frank Gore and Anquan Boldin) and are slated to only have approximately $13.5M in cap space to work with. With the expected resigning of Anquan Boldin coming within the next couple of days, that number will shrink to about $5.5 million. Here is where General Manager Trent Baalke has to earn HIS money, and he should start by cutting these 5 players:
5. Carlos Rogers
The 32-year-old Rogers was the best player on a terrible secondary in San Francisco. He started 16 games out of necessity, as the 49ers just lacked the depth behind him. Rogers is being paid like an $8-million-a-year corner, and that’s not who he is anymore. The 49ers would save $5.1 million by cutting Rogers, and with 12 draft picks in a very deep class they can find his replacement rather easily. Rogers should go.
4. Frank Gore
Another overpriced veteran, Frank Gore is coming off the seventh 1,000-yard season of his career. However, he just turned 30 and is slated to earn a $2.7 million roster bonus. The 49ers would save $6.4 million by releasing him and then trying to bring him back at a reduced rate later. The 49ers could, also, hand the reins over to last year's draft pick Marcus Lattimore, who was seemingly drafted for the purpose of replacing Frank Gore.
3. Joe Staley
Joe Staley played all 16 games for the 49ers at left tackle this past season. Staley has now started 48 consecutive games for the 49ers and is arguably the anchor of the 49ers offensive line. He’s made three-straight Pro Bowls. However, he will have turned 30 by the beginning of next season, and the 49ers can save $3.4 million by releasing Staley.
2. Glenn Dorsey
The former first-round pick saw his career really take off once he joined the 49ers. He had arguably his best season as a professional as he started 13 games as a nose tackle. Dorsey notched 50 tackles and 2 sacks, and made life that much easier for Patrick Willis and Navarro Bowman. The 49ers have Quinton Dial ready to take snaps from Dorsey, and letting Dorsey go saves the 49ers $2.6 million.
1. Dan Skula
Skuta was signed by the 49ers after Skuta wasn’t retained by the Cincinatti Bengals. He ended up starting eight games for the 49ers and had 32 tackles, two passes defended, and a fumble recovery for a TD. However, with 12 draft picks the 49ers can replace Skuta with one of their draft picks and save $1.5 million in cap space by releasing him.