James’ Update: Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network reports that Sherman’s deal has many protections for the team, including $2 million in 46-man roster bonuses, $1 million playtime incentive, and a $3 million Pro Bowl incentive. He also reports that Sherman gets more guarantees in 2019-20 if he makes the Pro Bowl in 2018.
So Sherman is betting on himself quite a bit.
The San Francisco 49ers brought in Richard Sherman for a free agent visit on Saturday, and they did not let him leave town. Sherman signed a three-year contract, and NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport is reporting the deal could be worth up to $39 million, and includes a $5 million signing bonus.
We don’t know all the details on full guarantees, and odds are pretty good at least one of the years is effectively a team option. More than likely the deal will end up including injury guarantees that become fully guaranteed if Sherman is on the roster by the time the next new league year rolls around. I could be wrong, but given Sherman’s age and the 49ers history, that seems a safe bet.
That being said, the 49ers appear settled on their two starting outside cornerbacks for 2018. Second year Ahkello Witherspoon will start on one side, and Richard Sherman will start on the other side. That does not preclude the 49ers from adding more depth, particularly in the draft. And Sherman’s recovery from an Achilles tear will be something to watch as well. He can likely be ready for the start of the season, but it is a big injury to come back from.
I expect the 49ers to add another cornerback, and a mid-round option in the draft could make sense. However, this would seem to decrease the odds considerably that they spend their first round pick on the position.