It's going down to the wire with 49ers free agents

March 13, 2012, 5:21 pm
Share This Post

The clock is ticking on the start of free agency. At 1 p.m., as many as 14 players who finished last season on the 49ers could be allowed to begin shopping their services around the league.Here's a look at those players:QB Alex Smith: The 49ers have an offer on the table that Smith and his agent have contemplated for some time. CEO Jed York said on Monday, "The ball's in his court." Over the weekend, Smith promised, "It will get done." Let's put it this way -- it should get done. And, perhaps, even before 1 p.m.

CB Carlos Rogers: He slipped through the cracks of free agency a year ago, settling for a one-year contract. He produced with six interceptions and a Pro Bowl season with the 49ers. Rogers had hoped the 49ers would come through with a satisfying multi-year offer before the start of free agency. But it hasn't happened. The day after the season, Rogers said, "Will they (the 49ers) be able to match the highest bid if I hit free agency and still keep this team together? Probably not." If there's a soft market for Rogers, who turns 31 in July, he could be back with 49ers. Right now, that appears unlikely, as Howard Balzer of 101 Sports (St. Louis) reports that the Rams have targeted Rogers.

RG Adam Snyder: Of all their starting jobs on the offensive line, Snyder's spot at right guard is the only one in question. The 49ers drafted Daniel Kilgore a year ago, and he has a chance to win a starting job. Snyder has value with his ability to play every spot on the line, so his return would make sense.

WR Joshua Morgan: The 49ers still want Morgan back after signing Randy Moss to a reported 2.5 million deal for 2012. At this point, Morgan might want to see what's available on the open market. He said he is fine after sustaining a season-ending broken leg early last season. And there is expected to be some interest around the league.

MAIOCCO: WR still a position of need even after Moss signing

WR Ted Ginn: He has every right to want to test the market after taking a pay cut in exchange for becoming a free agent a year early. Ginn's value to the 49ers was his ability to return kicks and punts. But his durability is an issue.

LB Larry Grant: The 49ers gave him an original-round tender of 1.26 million as a restricted free agent. If another team wants to sign Grant to an offer sheet to be a starter, the 49ers will not match. If Grant can't find a starting job elsewhere, he'll return to 49ers as the top backup to inside linebackers Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman.

REWIND: 49ers announce tenders for Grant, Brock

LB Blake Costanzo: The 49ers have already extended special-teams ace C.J. Spillman to a three-year, 4.2 million contract. Costanzo really fit in with the 49ers last season, so it's difficult to believe he won't be back.

RG Chilo Rachal: He lost his starting job at halftime of the third game of the season. He figures to find a better opportunity elsewhere.

S Reggie Smith: During his end-of-season sit down with 49ers brass, it was agreed that it was in his best interest to seek a better opportunity elsewhere.

FB Moran Norris: He lost his starting job to rookie Bruce Miller, and the 49ers will likely want to get younger and cheaper at backup fullback.

TE Justin Peelle: With Nate Byham expected to be fully healthy and the 49ers keeping the door open to add a tight end via the draft, Peelle does not rate as a high priority. If things fall into place, however, he could be brought in to compete in training camp.

LB Tavares Gooden: He fit in nicely last season as part of the special-teams unit. He could become more of a priority to re-sign if it looks as if Grant will get away.

S Madieu Williams: The 49ers would like him to return as an insurance policy at safety behind Dashon Goldson and Donte Whitner. He'll see what is available elsewhere on the open market.

WR Brett Swain: The 49ers did not tender him as a restricted free agent, but they have not ruled out his return at a minimum contract to compete in training camp.