3 players 49ers could cut to save cap space in 2021

Dee Ford #55 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Dee Ford #55 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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Laken Tomlinson, 49ers
Laken Tomlinson #75 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images) /

No. 2: 49ers Offensive Guard Laken Tomlinson

It’s generally not a good idea to completely revamp and overhaul an offensive line in one offseason, yet the Niners were forced to change out two-fifths of their O-line entering 2020 by saying goodbye to now-retired left tackle Joe Staley and parting ways with right guard Mike Person.

So, if cutting Weston Richburg isn’t entirely on the table, making left guard Laken Tomlinson a cap casualty in 2021 is a bit more feasible.

Tomlinson has been both reliable and solid enough since coming over from the Detroit Lions in 2017. But 2021 marks a contract year, and it’s much more simple a situation than the one previously discussed with Richburg.

Getting down to the numbers, Tomlinson is scheduled to count for $6.25 million against the cap next year. If cut, however, $1.25 million of that would be dead money while generating $5 million in additional cap space.

That could be a pretty substantial amount.

Granted, it would put pressure on San Francisco to address Tomlinson’s departure either with a low-budget free-agent addition, the NFL Draft with a plug-and-play rookie or possibly hoping one of the team’s current developmental players can fill a sizable void.

If that’s what it would take to keep a player like George Kittle, though, it might be necessary.