Dee Ford

49ers Release DE Dee Ford

The long-anticipated Dee Ford release came to pass Wednesday. The 49ers pulled the trigger on cutting the veteran defensive end, moving a player who struggled with injuries throughout his San Francisco tenure off the roster.

Given a lucrative 49ers extension (five years, $85MM) following a Chiefs tag-and-trade sequence in 2019, Ford ran into a number of issues with his second team. The injuries Ford encountered kept him off the field for most of the past two seasons. The former first-round pick played in just seven games from 2020-21.

This move does create just more than $1MM in cap savings for a 49ers team that came into Wednesday sitting 31st in cap space, but it also tags the team with more than $5MM in dead money. Ford’s contract will represent an $8MM-plus cap penalty for the 49ers in 2023. A cut before June 1 would have cost the 49ers more than $14MM in dead money. The 49ers redid Ford’s contract in 2020, 2021 and this year, inflating the dead-money figure. While they will not be rid of Ford cap hits until 2024, the team has finally moved on from a player who ran into a batch of bad breaks with his second NFL team.

Ford, who began his career with what amounted to a two-year apprenticeship behind Tamba Hali and Justin Houston, dealt with injuries with the Chiefs as well. Ford’s 2018 fifth-year option became guaranteed due to his inability to pass a physical that year — during the era before fifth-year options were fully guaranteed — because a of a back injury. That became indicative of the edge rusher’s future, but Ford managed to secure a lucrative contract between his bouts of back trouble. The 2018 season brought a Ford breakthrough; the Auburn product posted a 13-sack season. That prompted the 49ers to trade a second-round pick for him in March 2019.

In 2019, knee and hamstring trouble kept Ford off the field for five games. He still made an impact for the 49ers’ deep defensive line that year, totaling 6.5 sacks for the Super Bowl LIV-bound team. But back issues re-emerged in 2020; those would go on to define his Bay Area stay. Ford missed 15 games in 2020 and, after resurfacing as a rotational D-end to start last season, was shut down again. It would not surprise if a retirement announcement followed Wednesday’s release news, with neck trouble also impacting the 31-year-old pass rusher during the 2020s.

Dee Ford Not In 49ers’ 2022 Plans

Dee Ford re-emerged for a stretch last season, but his attempt to bounce back from a lost 2020 campaign again hit an injury wall. As a result, Ford’s 49ers career is almost certainly over.

John Lynch said Monday he does not expect Ford to be with the team next season. Given Ford’s contract situation, a post-June 1 cut will presumably be how the defensive end’s San Francisco run ends.

I don’t see a lot of hope with him being a factor for us on the field moving forward,” Lynch said, via NBC Sports’ Matt Maiocco. “I think we tried to be as patient as possible, and no fault of Dee, he just ran into a bad situation with his back, where he couldn’t get healthy.

We’ll figure that out, exactly what the transaction will be. But not enough hope and progress to see him playing for us moving forward.”

The former first-round pick returned to action for six games in 2021, registering three sacks. Ford’s back trouble flared up again, and it shut him down for the season. While Ford played a key role for the 49ers’ Super Bowl LIV-qualifying team, recording 6.5 sacks, he dealt with various injuries that year as well. He saw action in just one 2020 game because of the back malady.

The 49ers initially designed Ford’s five-year, $87.5MM deal in a way that protected them down the line, but after a 2020 restructure, the team ended up keeping the former Chiefs Pro Bowler for two more seasons. The 49ers redid Ford’s deal again in 2021 and adjusted it earlier this month. San Francisco will only be hit with $5.8MM in dead money if Ford is designated as a post-June 1 cut, leaving an extra $8MM-plus in dead money for 2023.

49ers DE Dee Ford Reworks Contract

The 49ers have opened up a chunk of cap space. According to ESPN’s Field Yates (on Twitter), the 49ers have restructured the contract of defensive end Dee Ford.

Following a trade in 2019, the 49ers inked the pass rusher to a five-year, $87.5MM deal. Last March, he agreed to scale it down to a two-year pact worth $24MM. Today’s move will create $4.96MM in 2022 cap space.

The 49ers traded for Ford during the 2019 offseason and saw him play a key role in their Super Bowl LIV run as a part-timer. Unfortunately, he’s been limited to just 18 regular season games in SF over the last two seasons and change.

The 30-year-old got into six games in 2021, collecting three sacks and four QB hits. However, his season ended on injured reserve with back and neck injuries.


49ers Planning Extensions For Nick Bosa, Deebo Samuel

Change is inevitable for the 49ers this offseason, especially at the quarterback position. Two major pieces to their run to the NFC Championship game, though, could be getting new contracts in the near future. ESPN’s Nick Wagoner reports that extensions for Nick Bosa and Deebo Samuel are in the team’s plans. 

We fully understand these guys are pillars of what we’re trying to do here”, general manger John Lynch said recently. “We’ve been blessed that we’ve been aggressive, because we’ve had a lot of players that we believe are some of the best in the league at what they do. And these guys are no different… I’m sure that we’ll find a way to get [extensions] done. It’s been budgeted for”.

Bosa has been the focal point of the team’s defense since being drafted second overall in 2019. He won Defensive Rookie of the Year honors in his first campaign, helping the team to the Super Bowl. He missed almost all of his second campaign due to a torn ACL, but returned to play all 17 games in 2021. His 52 stops – including a league-leading 21 tackles for loss – along with 15.5 sacks and four forced fumbles helped lead San Francisco on a late-season surge to the postseason, and all the way to the conference title game.

Samuel, the 49ers’ second selection in that 2019 draft, has followed a somewhat similar path in terms of his career arc so far. After an impressive rookie season, he missed nine games in 2020. His 2021 campaign, however, proved that he was back to full strength and capable of becoming the focal point of the team’s offense. Establishing himself as a ‘wide back’, he posted 1,404 receiving yards and six touchdowns, along with 365 yards and an additional eight scores on the ground.

Finding money to accommodate the two young stars should become easier in March. As Wagoner detailed last week, the contracts of not only Jimmy Garoppolo but also edge rusher Dee Ford are likely to come off the books. A Garoppolo trade (which would clear more than $25MM in cap space) has seemed inevitable since the selection of Trey Lance last April, while designating Ford a post-June 1st cut would yield another $2.4MM in savings. The latter move is believed to also be all-but guaranteed, after Ford battled injuries and totalled just 9.5 total sacks in three seasons with San Francisco.

Between those expected moves, and some other cap maneuvering such as restructures, the 49ers should open up enough space to be able to afford their next round of major extensions.

Latest On 49ers, Dee Ford

12:15pm: False alarm. On Wednesday morning, Ford explained that he sent a goodbye text to his teammates since he was en route to off-campus injury rehab. That text was misinterpreted by at least one of his teammates as a farewell, hence the earlier report.

The articles saying I told my teammates I expected to be released are false,” Ford told Mike Silver of (Twitter link). “I’m going to be getting rehab and taking the time needed to get back and I was saying goodbye to the boys because I wouldn’t be in the building. We are still rolling. We’re just taking the time needed.”

9:04am: Earlier this week, we learned that Dee Ford is unlikely to return from the injured reserve list this year. With that, the veteran edge rusher is expecting to be released by the 49ers, perhaps as soon as today (via PFT).

[RELATED: 49ers DT D.J. Jones On Future]

That’s something I never can predict,” head coach Kyle Shanahan said when asked about Ford’s outlook. “But I’ll be surprised if he’s back. I think we’ll just have to continue playing without him.”

The 49ers traded for Ford during the 2019 offseason and saw him play a key role in their Super Bowl LIV run as a part-timer. Unfortunately, he’s been limited to just 18 regular season games in SF over the last two seasons and change.

Ford’s original deal was a five-year, $85MM deal. In March, he agreed to scale it down to a two-year pact worth $24MM. If the Niners cut him, they’ll save $2.09MM on the 2022 books with $9.8MM left in dead money.

The former first-round pick has played in just six games this year and hasn’t taken the field since Oct. 24th. He was productive while healthy, however, tallying three sacks to bring his career total to 40.

49ers DE Dee Ford Not Expected To Play Again This Season

It’s sounding like Dee Ford won’t see the field again this season. Earlier today, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan didn’t sound particularly optimistic when discussing the veteran defensive end’s chances of being activated from IR.

“That’s something I never can predict,” Shanahan said (via Matt Barrows of The Athletic). “But I’ll be surprised if he’s back. I think we’ll just have to continue playing without him.”

A back issue limited Ford to only one game in 2020, and it was that same ailment that sidelined him in late October. The 30-year-old was designated to return from injured reserve back in late November, meaning he’d have to be activated to the active roster by December 16 or he’d lose his eligibility to play in 2021. While Ford seemed to be progressing well when he first returned to practice, it sounds like the veteran won’t be returning this season after all.

In six games this year, Ford collected three sacks, boosting his career total to 40. The eighth-year defender has struggled with injuries throughout his career, including neck trouble and concussion-like symptoms just this season.

The 49ers traded for Ford during the 2019 offseason and saw him play a key role in their Super Bowl LIV run as a part-timer. Unfortunately, he’s been limited to just 18 regular season games in SF over the last two seasons and change.

49ers Rule Out Deebo Samuel, Dre Greenlaw For Week 13

As expected, Deebo Samuel will not play for the 49ers in Week 13. The third-year wide receiver suffered a groin strain and could miss multiple games. San Francisco’s linebacking corps will be shorthanded as well.

Dre Greenlaw, who returned from a lengthy IR stay last week, is back among the 49ers’ inactives. The team ruled out its third-year linebacker starter because of a groin injury.

Samuel has been prone to injuries as a pro. He missed the start of last season because of a Jones fracture in his foot. After returning, the former second-round pick suffered a hamstring injury that led to the then-malady-riddled 49ers shutting him down for the rest of the season.

Sunday will mark Samuel’s 11th missed game as a 49er, though the Pro Bowl-bound talent said during an appearance on CBS Sports HQ this week (via 49ers Webzone) he has no doubt he will be back for Week 14. Through 11 games, Samuel has already cleared 1,000 receiving yards for the first time and has tacked on 203 rushing yards.

This will be Greenlaw’s 10th missed game this season. The 49ers are also likely to be without Fred Warner on their defensive second level. The All-Pro suffered a hamstring strain during San Francisco’s win over Minnesota, and he is doubtful to play Sunday in Seattle. This leaves Azeez Al-Shaair as the 49ers’ lone healthy starter at linebacker.

Additionally, Kyle Shanahan said Dee Ford is unlikely to be activated off IR ahead of Sunday’s game, via the San Francisco Chronicle’s Eric Branch. The 49ers designated Ford for return on Nov. 25. He has three weeks from that date to come back. Should Ford’s ramp-up period not include an activation by Dec. 16, he would spend the rest of the season on IR. Ford is attempting to play through a back injury Shanahan has acknowledged will likely plague the oft-injured pass rusher for the rest of his career and beyond.

49ers Activate LB Dre Greenlaw From IR

SATURDAY: Greenlaw will return this week. The 49ers officially activated the starting linebacker from IR on Saturday. The third-year veteran will suit up for the first time since Week 1.

WEDNESDAY: The injury-ridden 49ers are set to see one of their promising young defenders return this week. Kyle Shanahan expects Dre Greenlaw to be activated from IR before Sunday’s game against the Vikings, Matt Barrows of The Athletic tweets.

This comes four days after fellow defender safety Jaquiski Tartt returned to the 49ers’ active roster. Similar to the 2020 season, the 49ers have seen a large number of role players spend time on injured reserve — including Greenlaw and Pro Bowlers Dee Ford and Jason Verrett. Recent first-round picks Mike McGlinchey and Javon Kinlaw, who are both out for the season, joined them.

Greenlaw is on track to return after a nine-game absence. The third-year linebacker underwent groin surgery following the team’s season-opening win in Detroit. Greenlaw returned an interception 39 yards for a touchdown in that game but has not suited up since.

A fifth-round pick out of Arkansas, Greenlaw has been a starter since being drafted in 2019. Prior to this extended absence, Greenlaw played in all but three games over his first two seasons. His presence alongside Fred Warner has been a saving grace after the Reuben Foster and Kwon Alexander moves did not work out.

Ford is also set to return to practice, Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle notes, following a four-game absence due to a flareup of ongoing back issues. Ford, 30, is still on San Francisco’s IR. It is expected the 49ers will monitor the veteran edge rusher’s snap count, as they did earlier in the season, to accommodate the back issues that Shanahan says “he’ll deal with most likely forever.”

After a one-game 2020, Ford returned to play in San Francisco’s first six contests this season. The former Chiefs first-rounder has tallied three sacks and a forced fumble this year.

49ers Designate Dee Ford For Return

Dee Ford has been designated for return, per an announcement from the 49ers. This will open a 21-day practice window for the defensive end — he’ll either be moved to the active roster in the next three weeks or lose his eligibility to play in 2021.

[RELATED: Kyle Shanahan Says Garoppolo Could Start In 2022]

Ford hasn’t played since Oct. 24, a 30-18 loss to the Colts. It’s all tied to ongoing back trouble, the same issue that wiped out all but one of his games in 2020.

The eighth-year defender has struggled with injuries throughout his career. And, in addition to his bad back, Ford has also dealt with neck trouble and concussion-like symptoms this season.

[My back issues have] never fully gone away. That’s something he’ll deal with most likely forever,” Kyle Shanahan said earlier this month. “So, something that’s on again, off again.”

The 49ers traded for Ford during the 2019 offseason and saw him play a key role in their Super Bowl LIV run as a part-timer. Unfortunately, he’s been limited to just 18 regular season games in SF over the last two seasons and change.

So far this year, Ford has three sacks and four quarterback hits to his credit.

49ers Move DE Dee Ford To IR

Dee Ford missed his first game of the season last week, and the veteran edge rusher will make another trip to IR. The 49ers moved Ford off their active roster Saturday, doing so because of a troublesome injury lingering from last year.

The former Pro Bowl sack artist is still dealing with the back injury that wiped out all but one game of his 2020 season. The eighth-year defender suffered a flareup against the Colts and missed the 49ers’ Week 8 game in Chicago. While Ford must miss three games, it does not sound like the 49ers are certain he will be at full strength the rest of the way.

Interestingly, Ford got in a full practice Wednesday and was on the field in a limited capacity Thursday and Friday. This workload does not usually precede an IR trip, but the 30-year-old D-lineman has an extensive injury history. In addition to the back issue, Ford is battling neck trouble and has encountered concussion-like symptoms.

That’s never fully gone away. That’s something he’ll deal with most likely forever,” Kyle Shanahan said of Ford’s back problem. “So, something that’s on again, off again. The reason it’s mentioned for the first time is we think it came up with this concussion. Some of the symptoms presented as a concussion last week with the hit he took, but it acted up some stuff in the back that has been bothering him this week.”

The 49ers traded for Ford during the 2019 offseason and saw him play a key role in their Super Bowl LIV run, albeit with a part-time workload. But by the time this IR stint concludes, the former first-round pick will have missed at least 24 games in his three San Francisco seasons. Injuries also impacted Ford with the Chiefs. This season, Ford has three sacks and four quarterback hits as a rotational rusher. Ford’s absence follows Javon Kinlaw‘s IR trip. The interior D-lineman is out for the season.

In addition to the Ford transaction, the 49ers waived defensive lineman Zach Kerr and promoted safety Tony Jefferson and linebacker Tyrell Adams from their practice squad. Both Kerr and Jefferson were offseason adds. San Francisco also moved George Kittle and Robbie Gould from IR onto its active roster.