6:15pm: Adding further to the belief that Bosa is attempting to eclipse Donald as the league’s highest-earning defensive player, Tony Pauline of Sportskeeda reports that the 49ers are offering a deal in the range of $30MM to $31MM per season. However, he also quotes a source stating that San Francisco “won’t break the bank” on the former No. 2 pick. With time running out before the start of the season, it will be interesting to see how much farther the team is willing to go to get these negotiations over the finish line.
10:06am: Nick Bosa‘s holdout dragging into September has the 49ers in the same boat with the Chiefs, whose top defensive player (Chris Jones) is also in pursuit of a monster extension. While the current CBA largely curbed holdouts over its first three seasons, Bosa, Jones and Zack Martin have tested their respective teams this summer.
The Cowboys reached a resolution with Martin, giving the All-Pro guard a raise and fully guaranteeing his money through the end of his through-2024 contract. Martin still incurred nonwaivable fines, with Jones barreling toward $2MM in such penalties. But the CBA allows the 49ers to waive Bosa fines — due to the 2022 Defensive Player of the Year being tied to a rookie contract. That component makes this a less contentious negotiation.
But the 49ers are less than 10 days from potentially opening the season without Bosa. Kyle Shanahan expected a contract agreement to be reached around this time, and when asked if the absence of an extension opens the door to Bosa being traded, the seventh-year HC responded in the negative. John Lynch was more direct, flatly indicating (via ESPN’s Nick Wagoner) Bosa would not be moved amid these long-running negotiations.
“I thought it would come probably at this time, just looking at the history of those things,” Shanahan said of a Bosa deal. “And I’m really hoping it gets done. I know they’re working tirelessly at it … but hopefully we can get him in here sooner than later.”
Bosa’s importance to the 49ers ahead of his age-26 season made the subject of a trade almost immaterial, at least compared to the Chiefs’ Jones impasse. The 49ers have budgeted a Bosa extension for a while, with Lynch indicating last year 2023 would be the window when the star defensive end would cash in. Although the 49ers extended Deebo Samuel and George Kittle late in the summer, Bosa’s talks are pushing up against the regular season. Samuel agreed to his extension on July 31 of last year; Kittle locked in on August 13, 2020.
Lynch expressed disappointment this situation produced a lengthy holdout but said Bosa will land a “special contract.” Bosa’s camp is almost definitely gunning to top Aaron Donald‘s defender-record number ($31.7MM per year). With T.J. Watt setting the edge defender market in September 2021, the 49ers should be expected to top the Rams’ Donald payment. Bosa does not turn 26 until October and established himself as a franchise-changing presence immediately. The salary cap being back on the rise also boosts Bosa’s cause. Bosa is tied to a $17.86MM fifth-year option number; the 49ers stand to gain cap room with this extension.
In what should probably go without saying, new 49ers DC Steve Wilks doubts Bosa will be limited when he returns to work, per the San Jose Mercury News’ Cam Inman. Watt agreed to his $28MM-AAV extension (with a defender-record $80MM fully guaranteed) three days before the Steelers’ 2021 opener, though the Steelers star had staged a hold-in effort while tied to a fifth-year option salary. The 49ers open the regular season on Sept. 10 in Pittsburgh.