The San Francisco 49ers’ offensive line has had numerous issues the past few years, with injuries and ineffectiveness costing the unit in a big way. The team made some additions to the line this offseason, but they focused on veterans. The team signed several UDFA offensive linemen, but the real competitors or veterans Garry Gilliam, Tim Barnes, and Brandon Fusco.
Gilliam signed with the team as a restricted free agent, and the offer sheet details became public fairly quickly. However, we have been left waiting on details for the one-year contracts Tim Barnes and Brandon Fusco signed. Our man Jason Hurley now has them. They are not complete details, but they give us plenty of information moving forward.
Base salary: $1,000,000
Bonus: $100,000 (not sure what kind of bonus)
LTBE incentives: $300,000
Cap hit: $1,400,000
Fusco’s contract is not a huge one, but it’s a step above the $775,000 league minimum he would be due as a six-year veteran. He is in the thick of competition at guard. Offensive line coach John Benton said the team has Fusco, Joshua Garnett, and Zane Beadles competing for the two starting guard positions. The 49ers have had Garnett working at both right and left guard. He’s gotten the bulk of the first team work at right guard, but when he moves to left guard, he’s on the second team behind Beagles, while Fusco is first team right guard.
Base salary: $775,000
NLTBE incentives: They exist, but not sure how much
Cap hit: $795,000
According to Jason, the NLTBE incentives mean this is likely not a minimum salary benefit contract that saves the 49ers a few bucks on the cap. It’s a league minimum deal with a small bonus and a chance to earn a few extra bucks.
Barnes is currently competing at center, behind Jeremy Zuttah and Daniel Kilgore. Zuttah missed OTAs with an injury, and that got Barnes bumped up the depth chart a bit. Barnes faces a tough challenge because Zane Beadles can play center, along with every other line position. Barnes seems primarily situated to compete at center and nowhere else. That does not seem ideal for making the roster.