Why Carr hasn’t signed, yet . . . why few RFAs will change teams

Quarterback David Carr does not have cold feet. In fact, where he’s at right now, the weather is in the mid-70s.

Carr has yet to sign the two-year, $6.25 million contract with the 49ers because he and his wife, Melody, are squeezing in a Mexican vacation before Carr is scheduled to report to begin work with his new employer. The 49ers begin their offseason program on Monday.

The 49ers shipped the contract via overnight shipment to Carr’s hotel. He’ll either ship it back or just deliver it personally when he returns to the Bay Area. That’s why the 49ers have yet to acknowledge Carr’s arrival with the club.

Other stuff on my mind . . .

–Last year there were ZERO restricted free agents who changed teams. Word around the league is that things will not be much different this year. Don’t expect many – if any – players with first- or second-round tenders to switch teams.

In a year without a salary cap, most teams are placing a much higher value on retaining their draft picks. That is how teams must be built – not by throwing around a lot of money AND losing draft picks in the process.

–That’s at least one of the reasons, from what I can gather, the 49ers don’t have interest in signing restricted free agents, such as running back Leon Washington (Jets) or tackle Jared Gaither (Ravens).

–But this is also why I’ll hedge my bets on Rams safety Oshiomogho (O.J.) Atogwe. I don’t know if the 49ers are interested in him. My inclination is that even if they are willing to pay him a nice chunk of money to sign him away from the Rams, they might wait a long while to go after him.

Here’s the thumbnail version of what’s happening: Right now, the Rams own the right of first refusal with no compensation required. Teams have until April 15 to sign restricted free agents to an offer sheet. The Rams tendered Atogwe at the lowest level. If no team signs him to an offer sheet, the pressure turns to the Rams. If St. Louis doesn’t sign him to a long-term deal, trade his rights or give him a one-year, guaranteed contract of about $7 million, they’d lose all rights to him on June 1.

That’s when he would, in essence, become an unrestricted free agent. He could sign with whichever team at whatever price and the Rams would have no ability to match the deal to retain him. The 49ers – or any team – could sign him to an offer sheet before April 15, but they’d run the risk of the Rams matching the contract.

–The Redskins, who brought in offensive tackle Tony Pashos for a free-agent visit last week, are showing interest in unrestricted free agent Barry Sims. Pashos signed with the Browns, while Sims remains a free agent. The Redskins’ offensive line coach is Chris Foerster, who held the same job with the 49ers last year. Sims does not appear to be in a hurry to sign. He’s just waiting to see where his best opportunity emerges. The 49ers have expressed an interest in bringing him back – at the right price.

–Niners coach Mike Singletary is taking a very active role in the scouting process. Singletary attended the University of Cincinnati’s pro day today, according Cincinnati Enquirer Bengals writer Joe Reedy. The one player Singletary might want to get to know better is receiver/return specialist Mardy Gilyard. Unquestionably, Singletary wants to execute a thorough check of Gilyard’s background. If the 49ers need a dynamic return man, he might be a serious option in the second or third round.

Oh, by they way, we can put an end to all speculation the 49ers could be interested in Donovan McNabb. It sure appears as if the 49ers have their depth chart set at QB with Alex Smith, Carr and Nate Davis.

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