49ers Mailbag: Cap planning for next year

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49ers Mailbag: Cap planning for next year

The 49ers head back to work Tuesday for the first time since going into the bye week with a victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Oct. 29.Of course, it's Election Day and we're electing to answer some questions out of the 49ers Mailbag from our friends on Facebook . . . Q: The 49ers are only 500k under the salary. Is this a sign of salary cap problems next year or in the future? (Teddy Verdun)
The 49ers are a league-low 391,000 under the 2012 salary cap as of this morning, a league source tells CSNBayArea.com. But it appears as if the team's capologist, Paraag Marathe, has done a good job of setting things up for the team's future.For instance, knowing the 49ers would have some space to play with this year, the team a year ago restructured Patrick Willis' contract so that he would take up 17.6 million in cap space this year. Next year, Willis' cap number falls to just 3.6 million.The 49ers have 43 players under contract for next season at a cost of 118.6 million. The salary cap this year is 120.6 million. Here is a list of those with cap figures for next season of more than 4 million or non-starters at more than 2 million:QB Alex Smith 9.75 million
TE Vernon Davis 8.3 million
DT Justin Smith 8 million
CB Carlos Rogers 7.1 million
OLB Ahmad Brooks 6.556 million
RB Frank Gore 6.45 million
WR Michael Crabtree 5.77 million
C Jonathan Goodwin 5.02 million
WR Mario Manningham 4.88
S Donte Whitner 4.83 million
DT Ray McDonald 4.25 million
OLB Parys Haralson 2.87 millionREVIEW: 49ers mid-season report
But the 49ers also have several scheduled free agents, including safety Dashon Goldson, nose tackle Isaac Sopoaga, tight end Delanie Walker, and receivers Randy Moss and Ted Ginn.It only goes to reason, however, that it becomes more and more difficult to manage the salary cap when the roster is comprised of better players who command bigger contracts.Exhibit A: All-Pro linebacker NaVorro Bowman, who is scheduled to be grossly underpaid at 750,000 next season. His next contract -- with the 49ers or some other team -- will give him a significant pay increase.
Q: At what point do Trent Baalke and Jim Harbaugh tire of Aldon Smith's off field issues and waive him? (John Drummond)
Given the choice over an outstanding player who finds himself in the middle of several off-field issues or a below-average player who is a choir boy, there's not a team in the NFL that will choose the lesser player.Smith was reportedly involved last week in an early-morning disturbance, according to reports out of Columbia, Mo. One report had Smith getting "jumped." Smith denied that report, via Twitter, and said he was OK."What Aldon said to us was the same as what he said publicly," Harbaugh said Monday. "And you also tend to take a man at his word. So I don't know that there's anything more to add."In the meantime, the 49ers will wave Aldon Smith, all right. They'll wave him onto the field as a key every-down player in the 49ers' defense.Q: With Moss, Manningham, Davis, Crabtree, Williams and Ginn, would you say we have our receivers for the next couple years? (Michael Rodriguez)
Randy Moss and Ted Ginn are not signed beyond this season, so I'm not sure if they'll be around after this season.Kyle Williams and LaMichael James are being groomed to be the return men in future seasons, so it's questionable whether Ginn is going to be on the 49ers beyond this season.We don't know what the future holds for Moss, either. I'm sure a lot of that will depend on the final eight regular-season games and playoffs.One player you failed to mention is A.J. Jenkins. Although he has made no impact as a rookie, Jenkins is signed for three more seasons. He figures to have an increased role every season.
Q: Because of their strong depth, the 49ers haven't used their draft picks this year. With Andrew Luck playing so well, what if we traded our draft class for the 1st pick last year and drafted Luck? (James Stark)
When teams have a chance to land a franchise quarterback, they must take advantage of that rare opportunity.If the Colts had made that trade with the 49ers, first-year general manager Ryan Grigson would have no chance of making it to his second year with that job title.

Shanahan delegates offensive duties to 49ers staff

Shanahan delegates offensive duties to 49ers staff

SANTA CLARA – Kyle Shanahan will retain the role he held the past nine seasons in his first year as head coach of the 49ers.

Shanahan eschewed the formality of naming an offensive coordinator because he will keep those duties for himself. Still, Shanahan made it clear that he alone will not be able to fix the 49ers’ offense.

Shanahan has assembled a supporting cast that he said makes him comfortable to delegate responsibilities whenever his attention has to be focused on something other than the team’s offense.

“I mix it up,” said Shanahan, who previously held offensive coordinator roles with Houston, Washington, Cleveland and Atlanta. “Different guys have different attributes.”

Mike McDaniel and Mike LaFleur joined Shanahan after time together on the Atlanta Falcons’ offensive staff. McDaniel is the run-game specialist, while LaFleur, the wide receivers coach, is the pass-game specialist.

Tight ends coach Jon Embree, formerly the head coach at Colorado, is Shanahan’s assistant head coach. Shanahan said Embree has a vocal role on his staff.

Moreover, long-time NFL running backs coach Bobby Turner is a trusted assistant after spending 14 seasons in Denver and four more in Washington with Mike Shanahan, Kyle’s father. Turner coached under Kyle Shanahan the past two seasons with the Falcons.

”Bobby Turner’s been an assistant head coach for our teams we’ve had in the past and anytime that I need him to take over, he does,” Shanahan said. “So it depends what period it is, depends what we’re talking about.”

The 49ers opened organized team activities last week. It was the first time the 49ers’ rookies and veterans were together on the field for offense vs. defense practices. Shanahan said it takes some adjustment for him to figure out how to best budget his time during the workouts.

“I’m used to knowing exactly where to go and what to do and I always did that from an offensive coordinator standpoint which I still do a lot of those responsibilities,” Shanahan said. “So, at times, I feel most comfortable when I go to do that because that’s something to do. But, when I pass it over to some other guys and let them do it, I find myself walking around a lot and I’m not used to that.

“It feels awkward, but I don’t think it’s a bad thing. I think I should walk around and watch everyone and see it. I always see it on the tape, but that’s later at night. You want players to know you’re there and paying attention to everything and I usually try to cover that in meetings the next day also.”

Harbaugh goes Biblical, responds to Jacobs' criticisms of his coaching

Harbaugh goes Biblical, responds to Jacobs' criticisms of his coaching

Former NFL running back Brandon Jacobs spent one season with the San Francisco 49ers in 2012 under head coach Jim Harbaugh.

Jacobs only played in two games and gained seven yards on five carries. The results were nothing like his 5,087 yards and 60 touchdowns over eight years with the Giants. 

Apparently being pushed to the bench as a 31-year-old veteran running back didn't sit well with Jacobs. 

“Going somewhere where they don’t have route conversions into certain coverages was just absurd,” Jacobs said Thursday on the Tiki and Tierney Show. “They’re just running routes in the defense, getting people killed. Size and strength is what they had, and that’s why they won.

"Let’s be real. They had great assistant coaches, but Jim didn’t know what he was doing. Jim had no idea. Jim is throwing slants into Cover-2 safeties, getting people hurt. That guy knew nothing, man."

On Saturday morning, Harbaugh responded to Jacobs with a tweet to him. 

Harbaugh went 44-19-1 in four seasons as the 49ers' head coach. He also added five playoff wins and a trip to the Super Bowl in the 2012-13 season, the one that Jacobs played for him.