The San Francisco 49ers signed linebacker Ray-Ray Armstrong to a two-year extension this past winter, but the front office and coaching staff overhaul means few if any jobs are safe. The 49ers made that clear for Armstrong when they signed Malcolm Smith to a sizable contract in free agency. The final two years are options, but Smith likely has a good idea of what the 49ers want in their new defense.
Prior to the Smith signing, Armstrong looked like the fit for the weak side linebacker role. Smith is likely looking at that role now, leaving Armstrong competing for whatever he can get beyond special teams work. Armstrong’s deal is not exactly breaking the bank, with cap hits of $1.34 and $1.41 million each year.
My guess right now is Armstrong makes the roster, primarily on special teams. That being said, he’s getting his work in to prepare to compete for a linebacker role. Armstrong posted this video to Instagram showing a recent workout. The drills all focus almost entirely on coverage work, which is something that is a key component of the weak side role. It is an area where there are questions about Smith’s game. I would be surprised if Smith was not the starting OLB this fall, but I do think Armstrong will push him.