3 free agents 49ers should consider with NFL Draft complete

Cornerback Richard Sherman #25 of the San Francisco 49ers. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Cornerback Richard Sherman #25 of the San Francisco 49ers. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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Melvin Ingram, Los Angeles Chargers
Melvin Ingram #54 of the Los Angeles Chargers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

49ers Free-Agent Target No. 3: EDGE Melvin Ingram

While the final contract totals of the 49ers’ 2021 rookie class aren’t available yet, and some players remained unsigned, the current projected cap space for the Niners is currently just above $18 million, which is ninth most in the league.

Not bad for a team many considered was entering cap hell this offseason.

For a team with Super Bowl aspirations in sight, one of the smarter moves would be landing some supplemental pass-rushing help. A good idea for any squad is, when you think you have enough pass-rushers, grab another.

San Francisco is banking on a fully healthy EDGE, Nick Bosa, coming back from an early ACL tear suffered in 2020. The hope is he’ll be made better by the offseason additions of pass-rushers Samson Ebukam and Arden Key, too, while defensive end Arik Armstead looks to return to his 2019 10-sack form.

Yet the book is still out on whether or not EDGE Dee Ford can even play this season after suffering a season-ending back injury last year, meaning another veteran like former Los Angeles Chargers EDGE Melvin Ingram would make a good deal of sense.

At 32 years old and coming off a 2020 campaign that saw him deal with his own injuries, limiting him to zero sacks and just seven games played, Ingram is certainly going to be a much cheaper commodity. The three-time Pro Bowler enjoyed a double-digit sack campaign in 2017, followed by seven-sack seasons in both 2018 and 2019, too.

As far as low-risk, potentially high-reward free agents go, Ingram certainly fits the bill.

Plus, the Chargers used to run a similar 4-3 base, so there wouldn’t be too much of a schematic adjustment.

The 49ers wouldn’t need Ingram to be an every-down player, rather just an experienced and still-potent situational pass-rusher to help keep players like Bosa fresh.