Deebo Samuel

Kyle Shanahan: Deebo Samuel’s RB Role Did Not Factor Into Negotiations

Shortly after Deebo Samuel‘s trade request surfaced, matters like the wide receiver’s desire not to be used as a running back and his rumored desire not to live in California surfaced as ancillary reasons — beyond the contractual centerpiece in play — for wishing to be dealt. But Kyle Shanahan said the role component did not factor into the proceedings.

Samuel’s backfield usage did not come into play during the 49ers’ negotiations with their top wide receiver, Shanahan said Monday, via ESPN.com’s Nick Wagoner (on Twitter). The sixth-year 49ers HC said the progress that led to a three-year, $71.55MM extension came from the key parties meeting face-to-face. Samuel also confirmed the narrative that he no longer wished to be used as a running back was false, via the San Jose Mercury News’ Cam Inman (video link).

The 49ers did include some incentives to cover potential Samuel backfield duty. The escalators could pay Samuel as much as $1.95MM over the contract’s life. If Samuel gains 380 rushing yards in any season on this deal, he would collect $650K, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). A more likely incentive to be collected is tied to rushing touchdowns. Samuel would collect $150K for each year in which he scores three rushing TDs. Samuel scored three rushing TDs as a rookie and notched eight last season.

As for more traditional contract numbers, the former second-round pick — as could be expected during a transformative offseason for the receiver position — did well for himself. The 49ers gave Samuel $41MM fully guaranteed, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk notes, adding that, by April 1, 2023, $58.2MM of the deal will be locked in. Samuel’s salaries through 2024 will be guaranteed by April of next year; his 2025 base salary ($16.6MM) is nonguaranteed. A big chunk of Samuel’s $41MM guaranteed at signing comes from a $24MM signing bonus.

Samuel’s fully guaranteed figure comes in sixth at receiver, checking in ahead of D.K. Metcalf‘s total ($31MM). The Seahawks wideout, whose AAV tops Samuel’s, checks in with a nearly identical total-guarantee figure ($58.22MM). The 49ers used a void year in 2026 to spread out Samuel’s signing bonus and minimize his cap hits. The wideout will not carry an eight-figure cap hit until 2024, according to OverTheCap. Samuel will be tied to a $6.68MM cap number in 2022 and a $9.14MM figure in 2023. The notable jump during this contract occurs in 2024, when the All-Pro’s cap number spikes to $29MM.

The 49ers came up considerably from their initial offer, believed to be worth less than $19MM per year, but the receiver market also changed considerably since mid-April. A.J. Brown signed for four years and $100MM, with a receiver-record $56MM fully guaranteed, and both Metcalf and Terry McLaurin eclipsed $23MM per year. The 49ers now have Samuel and George Kittle signed through 2025.

49ers, WR Deebo Samuel Agree To Deal

After months of precarious conversations and rumors, the 49ers and star wide receiver Deebo Samuel have finally agreed to a new deal. Samuel has landed a three-year extension worth $71.55MM, with a potential maximum value of $73.5MM, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. 

Samuel’s annual average value of approximately $23.85MM per year ranks eighth among wide receiver contracts in the league behind Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams, DeAndre Hopkins, Cooper Kupp, A.J. Brown, Stefon Diggs, and recent fellow hold-in participant D.K. Metcalf. As expected, Samuel joins the trend of wide receivers breaking the $20MM per year threshold.

Samuel’s feud with the team that drafted him stems back to the early days of the offseason. General manager John Lynch had readily admitted that the team had an extension budgeted for Samuel and defensive star Nick Bosa, but San Francisco’s initial offer was out of range enough for Samuel to request a trade. Several teams reached out in hopes of trading for the 26-year-old, with the Jets making a dramatic push around the draft, but, ultimately, no trade unfolded.

At one point, Samuel had removed all references to the team on social media, indicating that the relationship was all but deteriorated, but eventually refollowed the team on Instagram and liked a post in which Lynch claimed the issues between the two parties could be worked out. The team’s communication with the media after that seemed to insist that a deal would get done, but as training camp approached, questions on the imminence of a new contract still pressed.

Samuel’s “hold-in” can now come to an end. While he had reported to training camp earlier this week, Samuel refused to practice amid his then-ongoing contract dispute. He had reported to minicamp, as well, but didn’t participate in any on-field work then either. The “hold-in” was a new concept, a result of the CBA’s crackdown on holdouts that would fine Samuel $40,000 for each day he was absent from camp.

With contract discussions in the rearview, Samuel can return focus to continuing his meteoric NFL development. Samuel impressed as a rookie amassing 57 receptions for 802 yards and three touchdowns en route to his teams run to a Super Bowl loss against the Chiefs. Samuel also showed that his impressive athleticism could provide an extra tool as he rushed for three more touchdowns on 14 carries for 159 yards. Samuel’s sophomore season was derailed a bit by injury as a fracture in his left foot forced him to miss the first three games of the season. He would miss nine games total that year due to a mix of COVID-19 and a hamstring injury.

Finally healthy again, Samuel exploded for a breakout year last season. Samuel more than doubled his career total recording 1,405 receiving yards on 77 catches for six touchdowns. He continued his dual-threat nature by rushing 59 times for 365 yards and a team-leading eight rushing touchdowns. Some reports indicated that one of Samuel’s gripes was his overuse in the run game, but the team supposedly addressed it by adding some depth to the running backs room.

But, now, all the gripes and issues will hopefully be behind the two parties. Samuel got his payday and the 49ers aren’t forced to deal one of their most valuable offensive weapons. Between signing Bosa and Samuel to massive extensions, Lynch and the 49ers’ brass have had one heck of an offseason.

49ers WR Deebo Samuel, Seahawks WR DK Metcalf Staging Hold-Ins

A pair of high-profile wideouts are staging “hold-ins.” ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports (on Twitter) that 49ers wideout Deebo Samuel and Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf will not be practicing at training camp due to contract disputes. Both players reported to training camp earlier this week.

The two receivers are heading into the final year of their respective contracts. Metcalf didn’t attend mandatory minicamp, but he incurred only a $90K fine. Samuel reported to minicamp but didn’t participate in on-field work, leaving the door open to a potential hold-in scenario. If the two players engaged in a traditional holdout, they’d face fines worth $40K for each day they were absent. The CBA’s recent holdout crackdown also includes a measure that would strip players of a year of service time toward free agency after barely a week’s worth of absences. Samuel and Metcalf will avoid these penalties by attending training camp but refusing to participate.

According to Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury (on Twitter), Samuel conditioned on the sideline while the rest of his team participated in drills today. Meanwhile, the 49ers front office and Samuel’s agent considered to negotiate a deal.

“Hopefully we can figure something out soon, but we’re in a good place today,” Kyle Shanahan told reporters shortly after speaking with Samuel (via Inman).

Samuel is expected to join the ever-growing club of receivers signing deals averaging at least $20MM per season. Bridging the gap between Samuel’s original asking price and the team’s best offer to date has, naturally, been seen as a key milestone in helping repair relations between the two sides after the 26-year-old’s April trade request. Still, there’s a clear divide when it comes to the player’s value.

Metcalf doesn’t have to look very far to find inspiration for his hold-in, as teammate Jamal Adams staged his own last offseason. Adams returned to the field once he received a record-setting contract. Metcalf shouldn’t expect to reset the market at receiver, but the impending free agent should still be able to secure a lucrative multiyear deal. Metcalf’s decision to skip minicamp surprised some in the organization, but both Metcalf and Pete Carroll have expressed optimism about an extension being finalized. Though, this process is not expected to be wrapped up early in camp. Late last month, a report emerged indicating a Metcalf deal “hardly seemed like a slam dunk.”

49ers Commit To Trey Lance As Starting QB; Jimmy Garoppolo Won’t Land On PUP

The Trey Lance era in San Francisco has officially begun. 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan told reporters today that the team is fully committed to last year’s third-overall pick as their starting QB, thus eliminating any QB controversy as veteran Jimmy Garoppolo lingers on the roster.

“We have moved on to Trey,” Shanahan said (via ESPN’s Nick Wagoner). “This is Trey’s team. That’s nothing against Jimmy. We made that decision a year ago and we’re going with that. We’re not going to mess around with that anymore. Jimmy understands that fully. That’s a business decision and that’s what makes it not awkward. Jimmy knows we’re going with Trey. Trey knows we’re going with Trey and our team does, and everyone likes both of those guys.”

It has been known since last April that San Francisco would hand the No. 1 role to Lance no later than his second season in the NFL. A deal sending Garoppolo elsewhere has thus been seen as inevitable throughout a 2022 offseason filled with several major moves at the position. The QB’s health obviously played a role in the fact that a trade still hasn’t materialized, but with few suitors (if any) on the market, the organization recently gave Garoppolo permission to seek a trade. According to Wagoner, Garoppolo met with Shanahan and GM John Lynch to discuss their next steps today, the first conversation the trio had had since February. Shanhan also told reporters that he’d like to have Garoppolo off the roster as “soon as we can.”

“We spoke when he left and we had a pretty good understanding of what was going on, and because of the surgery and the ramifications of that in other teams’ eyes, nothing has transpired as of yet,” Lynch said. “But he’s here, he’s reported, we’ll see what happens in the physical and we’ll move forward accordingly.”

Meanwhile, Garoppolo won’t be placed on the physically unable to perform list. As Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area tweets, the quarterback was cleared today after undergoing his physical. This was the intended plan as Garoppolo continues to recover from offseason shoulder surgery; Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury tweets that Garoppolo will do his throwing rehab on the sideline while the rest of the team is practicing. Plus, as NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo points out (on Twitter), there was little chance the 49ers were going to fail Garoppolo’s physical as they continue to seek a trade for the veteran. Today’s move also means the 49ers wouldn’t be on the hook for the player’s $7.5MM injury guarantee if he is ultimately released.

Garoppolo isn’t the only major story in San Francisco. We learned earlier today that wideout Deebo Samuel reported to camp despite seeking a new contract. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter), the two sides are not close on money, but the two sides are on the same page when it comes to Samuel’s role in 2022. The player has expressed a desire to get less carries between the tackles and reduce the wear and tear on his body.

49ers Planning 2023 Nick Bosa Extension

Two of the NFL’s highest-profile (non-quarterback tier) extension candidates reside in San Francisco. It appears the 49ers will take advantage of Nick Bosa‘s rookie contract, one that runs a year longer than Deebo Samuel‘s.

The prospect of the 49ers tabling a Bosa extension to 2023 surfaced earlier this summer, despite GM John Lynch indicating in February the team has a new deal for the dominant defensive end budgeted. Tuesday, Lynch said the team is now likely to extend Bosa in 2023, Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com tweets.

[RELATED: Examining Bosa’s Extension Path]

Because of the fifth-year option included in first-rounders’ contracts, the 49ers have Bosa signed for two more seasons. Samuel’s second-round deal expires after this year. Although the salary cap’s rise and the prospect of other edge rusher deals being completed between now and the 2023 offseason invites the prospect of Bosa’s price tag rising, the 49ers sound willing to risk that. Bosa is attached to an $895K base salary this season; his 2023 price tag comes in at $17.9MM.

Jimmy Garoppolo‘s $26MM cap number currently complicates 49ers extension math. So does Samuel’s murky status. The 49ers’ $4.9MM in cap space sits 31st in the league. Samuel reported to 49ers camp Tuesday, and Lynch called talks with the wideout “substantive,” though he cautioned nothing is imminent here (video link). While Bosa signed for $33.6MM guaranteed in 2019, doing so as the No. 2 overall pick, Samuel’s rookie deal was worth $7.7MM. The 2020 CBA has largely curbed holdouts, though it has increased “hold-ins” as a negotiating measure. Samuel did not participate in the 49ers’ minicamp, which came less than two months after his trade request.

Bosa signing an extension in 2023 would put him on the same track as other pass-rushing standouts. T.J. Watt, Aaron Donald, Khalil Mack and Joey Bosa signed deals ahead of their fifth seasons. Von Miller played Year 5 on the franchise tag before signing a record extension ahead of his sixth season. Myles Garrett, however, inked his current deal ahead of his fourth year. Donald’s defender-record $31.7MM-per-year deal represents the current defender standard. Nick Bosa ending up with a deal between Watt’s $28MM-AAV pact and Donald’s would make sense. Then again, as the QB market regularly shows, less accomplished players frequently surpass monster contracts given to superstars. Bosa is one of the NFL’s best defensive players, and despite not quite being on Donald’s plane, the fourth-year 49er defensive end producing another strong year would likely lead to conversations about topping Donald’s price.

Watt staged a “hold-in” effort last year, passing on team drills during training camp before he signed an extension just before the season. It would be interesting if Nick Bosa followed that path this year, given his low base salary and importance to the 49ers’ defense. For now, it looks like the younger Bosa brother will play a fourth season on his rookie contract.

No Extension Imminent Between 49ers, Deebo Samuel

While there was an important update on one 49er who has been in the headlines all offseason yesterday, the situation regarding another of the team’s key priorities is murkier. With training camp approaching, much remains to be determined as it pertains to Deebo Samuel

An NFL.com report details that there is “nothing imminent” with respect to an extension being finalized by San Francisco and the All-Pro receiver. That runs counter to the sense that a lucrative long-term deal could be hammered out in the build-up to camp, a possibility brought up last month. Nevertheless, the two camps “have had talks” about an extension, per the report.

Bridging the gap between Samuel’s original asking price and the team’s best offer to date has, naturally, been seen as a key milestone in helping repair relations between the two sides after the 26-year-old’s April trade request. However, it is still “unclear as to how close the parties are to a new contract.” Samuel boosted his market value in 2021 with 1,770 scrimmage yards as he became the undisputed focal point of the 49ers’ offense late in the regular season and into the playoffs.

As a result, he is widely expected to join the ever-growing club of receivers signing deals averaging at least $20MM per season – a sizeable jump in compensation from the $4MM the South Carolina product is set to earn in 2022, the final year of his rookie contract. The 49ers could scarcely afford much in the way of a raise for him this season in their current cap situation, though that will change dramatically once Jimmy Garoppolo is no longer on the books. San Francisco also has fellow 2019 draftee Nick Bosa eligible for an extension, though those negotiations have taken a backseat to Samuel talks.

With much unsettled regarding his contract status, it remains to be seen if Samuel will attend training camp next week. He skipped voluntary OTAs, but was present for mandatory minicamp. The fact that he didn’t participate in any on-field work, however, leaves a ‘hold-in’ along the same lines as a distinct possibility. While the Garoppolo situation seems set to remain in a holding pattern for the near future, then, the Samuel one will be worth watching in the coming days.

5 Key Stories: 6/26/22 – 7/3/22

Even in the quietest part of the offseason, there were still some significant developments around the NFL. Here’s a quick rundown of the week’s top headlines:

  • Watson Hearing Concludes: The top offseason storyline in the league reached another critical stage, as the hearing presided over by Sue Robinson concluded after three days. Her decision on whether Browns QB Deshaun Watson will be suspended – and if so, for how long – will be the next step in this process, and could be delayed by a matter of weeks. Any appeals process (which would be administered by commissioner Roger Goodell or his appointee) would then follow, and have drastic consequences on Watson, the Browns and, given the precedent it could set, any players who find themselves in a similar situation in the future.
  • McLaurin Signs Extension With Commanders: The offseason was building towards Terry McLaurin signing a lucrative extension in Washington, and he did just that by inking a three-year deal. The pact carries an average annual value of $23.3MM, and includes a signing bonus of $28MM. With the new contract in hand, McLaurin will see significant guaranteed money, while still being eligible for another significant deal at the age of 30.
  • Mayfield Dispels Talk Of Browns Reconciliation: With a Watson suspension looming, many have pointed to Baker Mayfield as the Browns’ best QB option in 2022. He remains on the roster, as trade talks have sputtered throughout the offseason, but the fences between himself and the team still aren’t likely to be mended. “I think it’s pretty obvious the mutual decision on both sides is to move on,” he said, when asked about the possibility of rescinding his trade request to play out the final year of his contract in Cleveland. Finding a trade partner could still remain challenging for the team, though.
  • 49ers Nearing Samuel Extension?: With McLaurin (and fellow 2019 draftee A.J. Brown) having signed big-money extensions, attention will turn even more so to the 49ers and Deebo Samuel. It was reported that, as trade talk cools around the highly-productive ‘wide-back,’ the team is “expected to continue working toward” a new deal with Samuel. In that event, he could find himself under contract by training camp later this month, presumably joining the $20MM-per-year WR club as many others have already done this offseason along the way.
  • Texans Facing First Watson Suit: The civil litigation filed against Watson has been well-documented, and, even after 20 of those suits were settled, will remain a significant storyline into, quite possibly, next offseason. Another development related his case, though, was the news that the first lawsuit related to his conduct while with the Texans was filed against the franchise itself. A statement from plaintiff’s attorney Tony Buzbee suggested that many others could follow, claiming that “the overwhelming evidence collected indicating that the Houston Texans enabled Watson’s behavior is incredibly damning.”

Latest On 49ers, Deebo Samuel Talks

One of the key storylines in San Francisco remains the short- and long-term future of Deebo Samuel with the team. With spring practices now completed, attention is being turned to where things stand with respect to an extension for the All-Pro wideout. 

[RELATED: Samuel Unlikely To Be Traded?]

Samuel was one of several extension-eligible players at his position who skipped voluntary workouts. However, unlike D.K. Metcalf and Terry McLaurin, he was in attendance for the 49ers’ mandatory minicamp, albeit in a way which didn’t involve any on-field activity. That has not only cooled the potential trade market which formed in the build-up to the draft, but also led to further optimism that a deal can be hammered out by the start of the 2022 campaign.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan said, via ESPN’s Nick Wagoner“I know we go through the business part of this league, but I don’t think the relationship was ever too far away to not get it back to normal, and I think we’re working on that.”

As a result, Wagoner adds that the possibility of a new contract being finalized in time for training camp “can’t be ruled out.” That would, of course, represent the best-case scenario for all involved, as it would eliminate the perceived need on Samuel’s part to stage a ‘hold-in’ during camp, and give the 49ers clarity on the financial situation of one of their franchise pillars, with Nick Bosa also eligible for an extension.

Wagoner reports that San Francisco is “expected to continue working toward” a new deal with Samuel over the course of the next few weeks. Coming to an agreement will require bridging the gap between the 26-year-old’s original asking price and what the team has shown a willingness to pay him, of course, but progress on that front could be coming in the near future.

49ers WR Deebo Samuel Unlikely To Be Traded?

49ers wideout Deebo Samuel, who is set to enter a contract year, wants to capitalize on the seismic shift that the league’s receiver market has undergone this offseason. Even before draftmate A.J. Brown landed a $25MM/year deal from the Eagles, Samuel was eyeing that benchmark, and now it seems as though San Francisco will have to pony up that kind of cash if it wants to extend the 2021 First Team All-Pro.

It’s unclear where extension negotiations stand at the moment, but it still seems likely that Samuel will remain with the Niners for at least the 2022 campaign. The club rebuffed all trade inquiries in the run-up to the draft in April, and while Samuel was not present for voluntary OTAs, he did appear for mandatory minicamp (unlike another platform-year peer, D.K. Metcalf). Earlier this month, we heard that player and team were still engaged in contract talks, and the fact that Samuel should not need to be utilized as a between-the-tackles runner this season may help push the two sides closer to an accord.

Further, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports that there is “not a lot of league-wide chatter” about a Samuel trade at the moment (Twitter link). Samuel has not formally rescinded his trade request (as far as Fowler knows), but it sounds like rival clubs who might be interested in the South Carolina product believe there is no point in engaging the 49ers in trade talks.

Speculatively, it could be that Samuel realizes re-upping with the 49ers this summer is his best option, as long as he can get close to his current fair market value (which Spotrac estimates to be just shy of $25MM per year). If he stages a “hold-in” at training camp, the club could attempt to prevent him from accruing a fourth year of service time, which would make him a restricted free agent in the 2023 offseason. And, while the team could waive or reduce any fines he accumulates by holding out of training camp — since he is still tethered to his rookie contract — holding out obviously comes with the same service time risks as a hold-in.

If he simply rejects the 49ers’ best offer and opts to play out the final year of his rookie contract in the hopes of hitting free agency in 2023, he would be betting his future earnings to a large extent on the right arm of an unproven second-year passer in Trey Lance (to say nothing of San Francisco’s franchise tag rights). If Samuel fails to replicate his tremendous 2021 performance — 77 catches for 1,405 yards and six scores, good for a league-best 18.2 yards-per-reception, to go along with 59 carries for 365 yards and eight TDs — his market value could certainly take a dip.

NFC West Notes: Hawks, Davis-Price, Rams

Not big on making big cornerback investments, with Richard Sherman‘s 2014 extension the exception, the Seahawks have some questions at the position ahead of training camp. A year after the team let Shaquill Griffin walk in free agency, 2021 starter D.J. Reed joined the Jets in March. The Seahawks did not use a first- or second-day draft pick at corner and, while they brought back Justin Coleman in the slot, have some uncertainty in how they will replace Reed. One option will be Artie Burns, the former Steelers first-round pick who signed a one-year, $2MM deal. Burns, 27, lined up opposite Sidney Jones with Seattle’s first-team defense at minicamp, Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times notes. Burns, who worked as a late-season starter with the Bears last season, has not been looked upon as a primary starter since the Steelers benched him in 2018. A pair of fourth-round picks — second-year cover man Tre Brown and rookie Coby Bryant — loom as options as well. Brown did not participate in minicamp, due to the knee injury that ended his rookie slate. After nearly four years after his Steelers starter run wrapped, Burns has a chance to carve out a key role with his third team.

Here is the latest from the NFC West:

  • The 49ers Tyrion Davis-Price third-round pick was somewhat surprising, but bolstering a backfield featuring other notable assets may be a two-fold solution. While the 49ers have starter Elijah Mitchell, backup Jeff Wilson and 2021 third-rounder Trey Sermon, Albert Breer of SI.com notes the selection of the LSU running back choice doubled as an “olive branch” of sorts to Deebo Samuel. Kyle Shanahan using Samuel as a between-the-tackles back last season is believed to be one of the gripes the disgruntled wide receiver had when he made his trade request in April. Davis-Price joining the backfield will provide more insurance so that Samuel — his 6.2 yards-per-carry figure notwithstanding — will not be needed for such a role in 2022. The 49ers continue to work toward a Samuel extension.
  • The Rams‘ big-ticket extensions for Aaron Donald and Cooper Kupp will create a bit of cap room in 2022. The defending Super Bowl champions are gaining $3.63MM in space, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets, with Donald tied to a $24MM cap number and Kupp tethered to a $17.8MM figure. Los Angeles’ Donald and Kupp deals occurred two days apart. Donald is now the game’s highest-paid non-quarterback, while Kupp’s new pact checks in at $26.7MM per year — fourth among wideouts — and carries a receiver-high $75MM guaranteed.
  • Shifting back to the Seahawks, they set to return their 2021 guard duo — Gabe Jackson and Damien Lewis — but their oldest O-lineman will be returning from offseason knee surgery, per Condotta. Jackson, 30, missed OTAs and the Seahawks’ minicamp because of the procedure. The former Raiders starter is going into his ninth season. Because of the new contract the Seahawks gave Jackson last year, he is set to count $9MM toward their 2022 cap. Jackson only missed one game in his first Seahawks season.
  • Staying on the Seahawks’ O-line, the team will feature a right tackle competition in camp. Rookie Abraham Lucas will vie for the job against second-year blockers Jake Curhan and Stone Forsythe, Condotta adds. A former UDFA, Curhan started five games last season. Forsythe, who has mostly worked as a left tackle during his short career, played just 14 offensive snaps as a rookie. Second-year Seattle OC Shane Waldron said he does not have an issue starting two rookies at tackle; No. 9 overall pick Charles Cross is set to succeed Duane Brown on the left side.