The San Francisco 49ers signed defensive tackle Earl Mitchell last week, and it would appear they are looking for some additional help on the defensive interior. NFL Network reporter Jane Slater tweeted that talks are “heating up” between the 49ers and free agent defensive tackle Terrell McClain.
McClain is getting some decent interest on the open market. Tony Pauline reported last week that the Atlanta Falcons and Seattle Seahawks are both interested in him. The 49ers, Seahawks, and Falcons are all going to be playing a similar version of defensive scheme, so it is no surprise they will be connected to similar players.
McClain has a couple connections to the 49ers. He most recently played for the Dallas Cowboys dating back to 2014, but prior to that he played for the Houston Texans in 2012 and 2013. He played with Earl Mitchell both years, and the assistant defensive line coach in 2013 was new 49ers DL coach Jeff Zgonina.
McClain is not somebody who will make huge waves on the stat sheet, but he can play along the interior and provide solid run-stuffing. The 49ers have DeForest Buckner and Earl Mitchell likely lining up in those two interior spots in the base defense. Quinton Dial and Mike Purcell are two other more traditional run-stuffers, but the team will lose Glenn Dorsey and Tony Jerod-Eddie, among others. The Mitchell signing did not end their roster additions there, and McClain is a solid option in the middle.