49ers could pick up two compensatory picks in 2015

49ers could pick up two compensatory picks in 2015
April 7, 2014, 7:15 am
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Compensatory free agents are determined based on salary, playing time and postseason honors. (AP)

Anthony Dixon signed a three-year, $3.5 million contract, including a $500,000 signing bonus, with the Buffalo Bills. (USATI)

The 49ers are in line to receive two compensatory picks in the 2015 draft, based on net losses during the free-agent signing period.

The 49ers’ only qualifying gain in free agency is safety Antoine Bethea, whom the club awarded a four-year, $21 million contract, including a $5 million signing bonus, on the first day of the signing period.

Meanwhile, the 49ers lost three free agents who figure to count toward the formula for determining compensatory draft picks:

--Safety Donte Whitner signed a four-year, $28 million contract, including a $9 million signing bonus, with the Cleveland Browns;

--Cornerback Tarell Brown signed a fully guaranteed one-year, $3.5 million deal with the Raiders;

--And running back Anthony Dixon signed a three-year, $3.5 million contract, including a $500,000 signing bonus, with the Buffalo Bills.

That gives the 49ers a net loss of two free agents, which should translate into two compensatory draft picks.

A total of 32 compensatory picks are awarded at the ends of the third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh rounds. Compensatory free agents are determined based on salary, playing time and postseason honors. The formula, which has never been made public, was developed by the NFL Management Council. Players who were cut (Carlos Rogers) or traded (Blaine Gabbert and Jonathan Martin) do not count as either gains or losses.

It is believed that players who sign one-year, minimum-salary contracts with no or minimal signing bonuses do not count in the formula. Therefore, 49ers addition Chris Cook, and losses Mario Manningham (New York Giants) and quarterback Colt McCoy (Washington) do not figure to factor into the equation. McCoy signed a one-year, $795,000 contract with a minimum base salary and a $65,000 signing bonus on Friday, a source told CSNBayArea.com on Monday.

The 49ers picked up a seventh-round pick in 2015 with the trade last year that sent outside linebacker Cam Johnson to the Indianapolis Colts. The 49ers will send a 2015 seventh-round pick to the Miami Dolphins if offensive lineman Jonathan Martin makes the 49ers’ 53-man roster to open the season.

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