On Wednesday the San Francisco 49ers and Nick Bosa the highest paid non-quarterback in the NFL. The timing of the deal should allow Bosa to be ready for the season opener against Pittsburgh on Sunday.
“I mean, there is question because we haven’t seen him, but I think you guys know how I’m talking,” said head coach Kyle Shanahan while announcing the signing. “Like he’d have to have a beer belly and be out of shape or something which that’s not in Bosa’s DNA.”
ESPN was first to report the deal as $170 million over five years with $122.5 million guaranteed. It was later reported the deal includes a signing bonus of $50 million and will be in addition to his current deal. This means the 49ers now have Bosa under team control for the next six seasons.
Having Bosa in the lineup on Sunday is a big advantage for San Francisco. The defensive end is coming off a season during which he recorded 18.5 sacks and 48 quarterback hits during the regular season. To put those numbers into perspective, the combined career highs of the 49ers other four edge rushers total to 20.5 sacks and 41 quarterback hits.
On Thursday afternoon Bosa made his first appearance on the practice field in Santa Clara. During the portion of practice open to the media he was seen working on the side with 49ers strength and conditioning coach Dustin Perry.
The 49ers will next turn their attention to extending wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk. Except for DeForest Buckener, who wasn’t drafted by this regime, they have been able to hold on to their top players.
However, will the Bosa contract and other big deals given to veterans lead the 49ers into salary cap hell?
The dirty little secret about the NFL’s salary cap is teams can always find a way to hold on to players if they really want to. That is the case with the 49ers and Aiyuk. Even with the big money given to Bosa, the 49ers have levers they can pull to make this work within the salary cap.
On Wednesday the team created $23.224 million in cap space by reworking the contracts of George Kittle and Trent Williams. This is a good example of how the 49ers would be able to get Aiyuk done and bring in additional free agents.
San Francisco has the flexibility to free up nearly $82 million through the restructuring of contracts. Among those whose could receive new deals are Deebo Samuel, Fred Warner and Arik Armstead to name a few.
Two key members of the 49ers secondary did not participate in Thursday’s practice. Talanoa Hufanga was out for personal reasons. Meanwhile, cornerback Charvarius Ward was held out with an injury to his heel. The injury to Ward would be a significant blow to the 49ers secondary if he cannot play on Sunday. Any update on this will come tomorrow from Kyle Shanahan. The assistant coaches do not discuss injuries.
Jon Feliciano and Trent Williams returned to after missing Wednesday’s practice. Feliciano was out due to illness while Williams had a rest day.
George Kittle has been dealing with a groin injury. He was moving good during individual work and while running routes with the quarterbacks.
Ray-Ray McCloud was running routes. The wide receiver injured his thumb but has recovered quickly and looks like he will be ready to go.
Oren Burks (knee), Tashaun Gipson (back), Jordan Mason (foot) and Jake Moody (quadricep) were all on hand as well during the portion of practice open to the media.