NFC West Notes: 49ers, Quinn, Cardinals

The 49ers have big-money decisions to make, while the Cardinals eye offensive line help in a batch of NFC West division tidbits:

  • Last season, 49ers cornerback Carlos Rogers declined a pay cut, but the team had no recourse because they needed him on the field. A year later, the team is prepared to release Rogers if he does not agree to a pay cut, as the veteran is scheduled to earn a $6.25MM base salary and count nearly $8.1MM against the cap, writes Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area. Releasing Rogers after June 1 would save $6.6 on the 2014 cap, but the team would incur $1.5MM in dead money on the 2015 cap. If the team swallowed the entire cap hit in 2014, the immediate cap savings would be $5.1MM with no dead money in future years.
  • The escalating salary cap helps the 49ers long-term, especially given the team’s desire to retain 2015 free agents Colin Kaepernick, Aldon Smith, Michael Crabtree and Mike Iupati, but the extra $10MM the rest of the league has to play with in the short term could make it difficult to retain this year’s free agents, including Donte Whitner, Tarell Brown and Phil Dawson, writes Eric Branch of
  • Robert Quinn is entering the final year of his four-year rookie contract, but a provision in the new CBA (instituted in 2011 when Quinn was drafted 14th overall) allows the Rams to keep the reigning Defensive Player of the Year through 2015, notes Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. By virtue of Quinn being selected between No. 11 overall to No. 32, the team can pay Quinn the average salary made by the third- through 25th-highest paid players at the defensive end position ($6.9MM).
  • The Cardinals are targeting Branden Albert and Rodger Saffold in that order, according to Kent Somers of (via Twitter).
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