As 2014 approaches it's getting closer and closer to the time where we can project what will happen to the 2014 roster. In 2014 the 49ers currently have $7,971,744 in cap space. The $5,538,996 from 2013 will also roll over, giving us a total of $13,510,740.
I'm predicting the following players will almost certainly be cut:
Carlos Rogers $5,105,468
Jonathan Baldwin $1,404,765
Adam Snyder $1,050,000
Alex Debniak $493,332
Brandon Carswell $495,000
Raymond Ventrone $855,000
Derek Carrier $455,000
Which nets us a total of $22,319,305 in cap space. Subtracting roughly $6 million for our draft picks leaves us $15 million in cap space. The following players will be free agents.
Of these players, I think the only one that can be said for certain to be on the team in 2014 is Phil Dawson. Phil Dawson made $2,350,000 in 2013 and should expect a similar deal in 2014, leaving the 49ers with approximately $12.5 million in cap space. There are other players that might also be cut and contracts that could be reworked, but I think this is roughly where we'll be at.
In addition, we've got two notable players that will almost certainly be extended. They're Aldon Smith and Kaepernick. Extending Aldon Smith will cost us an additional $5-7 million (making his pay equal $10-12 million in 2014) and Kaepernick will cost an additional $9-11 million (total pay equal $10-12 million). In short, this leaves us at roughly -$5 million in space which obviously isn't possible.
I've argued it before that I don't see Frank Gore returning in 2014. His salary is $6,750,000, none of which is guaranteed. I think we simply have too much talent at the position right now and a need for cap space. My best guess is that he's traded for another late round draft pick instead of getting absolutely nothing if we cut him.
I don't think we're in a bad cap position, but I think we are going to have to make some tough choices. I'd like to see Anquan Boldin, Eric Wright and Kasim Osgood resigned and I think it's possible if contracts are reworked, but I think that might be optimistic.
This leaves us to replace a SS, CB, C, WR, two special teams players and a backup QB in the draft or through free agency.
Does anyone have some other input here? I don't think this is the definitive analysis by any means, but I think it's a good picture.