49ers cut day press conference: Jim Harbaugh
Michael Crabtree, who is inelgible to practice or play for the first six weeks of the season, is set to earn $5.77 million this year. (USA TODAY IMAGES)
On the surface, the 49ers are comfortably under the NFL's salary cap. But the organization can use every dollar in cap savings it can muster when it comes to the final cuts.
Before Saturday's final cuts, only the top 51 contracts count toward the salary cap. The 49ers check in at $7.225 million under the cap, a source told CSNBayArea.com.
But after rosters must be reduced to 53 players on Saturday, all contracts count toward the 49ers' adjusted salary cap of $125.77 million.
The 49ers on Tuesday reached the 75-man roster limit by placing eight players on reserve lists.
[NEWS: 49ers trim roster to 74]
Cornerback Chris Culliver is out for the season with a torn ACL. The others, including Michael Crabtree and Mario Manningham, are eligible to be activated after the sixth week of the regular season.
In all, $13.5 million of the team's cap space is devoted to players who will not be eligible to play due to injuries at the beginning of the season.
The 49ers are watching their cap dollars closely because unused cap money from one season can be rolled over into the next. After this season, the 49ers can negotiate contract extensions with quarterback Colin Kaepernick and outside linebacker Aldon Smith. Both Kaepernick and Smith are signed through the 2014 season, and they are likely to become among the highest-paid players at their respective positions. Guard Mike Iupati and Crabtree also have deals that are scheduled to expire following the 2014 season.
The 49ers are being cautious with their cap dollars, which helps explain why the team traded outside linebacker Parys Haralson on Monday.
[NEWS: 49ers ship Haralson to Saints]
Also, the 49ers are torn over the long-snapper decision. Reliable Brian Jennings, a 13-year vet, is scheduled to count $1.16 million against this year's cap if he's on the team. Meanwhile, undrafted rookie Kevin McDermott would count just $406,666 if he is chosen over Jennings.
Here are the players who open the season on reserve lists and how much space they count toward the team's 2013 salary cap:
Physically unable to perform
Michael Crabtree $5.77 million
Mario Manningham $2.8 million
Tank Carradine $899,578
Eric Wright $715,001
Marcus Lattimore $480,146
Quinton Dial $450,413
Luke Marquardt $406,666
The above players are ineligible to practice or play for the first six weeks of the regular season.
Chris Culliver $704,719
Darcel McBath $363,425
Darius Fleming $344,200
Alex Debniak $289,666
Brandon Carswell $288,000
The above players are ineligible to play at any point this season.