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Live updates as 2018 NFL free agency tampering period ‘begins’

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We will be tracking rumors, news, and transactions as they come in.

Fooch’s update 6:24 am — Chiefs sign MLB Anthony Hitchens

Fooch’s update 4:54 am — Case Keenum is signing with the Broncos

Fooch’s update 4:24 am — The Chiefs are signing Sammy Watkins to a three year contract

Fooch’s update 4:14 am — Andrew Norwell is signing with the Jaguars

Fooch’s update 3/13, 4:03 am — Allen Robinson is signing with the Bears, 49ers showing interest in Trent Murphy

Fooch’s update 9:42 am — 49ers linked to Andrew Norwell

The 2018 NFL free agency tampering period opened at 9 a.m. PT today, which means teams are officially allowed to negotiate with agents of players hitting unrestricted free agency on Wednesday.

I had previously read the tampering period opened at 1 p.m. PT today, but in reality, neither time matters. Yes, teams can get in trouble for tampering before today, but we all know tampering has been happening for at least a couple weeks. Teams and agents chatted plenty during the NFL Combine, and odds are pretty good some teams and agents had spoken even before that.

The point being, negotiations are underway. Contracts cannot be formally executed until 1 p.m. PT on Wednesday, at which point teams will make news official about signings. Additionally, that is when trades can be formally executed. NFL teams cannot make trades from the October trade deadline until the start of the new league year. That means on Wednesday, the Alex Smith trade and contract extension will become official, as will the all the Cleveland Browns trades, and plenty of other deals that have been reported.

The San Francisco 49ers begin the tampering period having locked down a starting cornerback in Richard Sherman, but they have also been busy getting deals done with their own potential free agents. The team signed quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, edge rusher Cassius Marsh, offensive tackle Garry Gilliam, center Daniel Kilgore, and linebacker Mark Nzeocha to new deals. Additionally, they picked up Dekoda Watson’s option, signed exclusive rights free agent Raheem Mostert to a one-year deal, declined Elvis Dumervil’s option, and extended Marquise Goodwin.

As the formal negotiation period gets started, we’ll be keeping track of all the news and rumors here. We’ll have individual posts for notable news, but this will serve as our first open thread of the free agency period. We’ll pin this to the top of the page so people have a broader free agency open thread. As this gets loaded with comments, we’ll have a new one in the coming days (maybe even later today, depending on how busy things get).

Some early news as the negotiation period:

49ers transactions

March 11: Sign CB Richard Sherman to 3-year deal
March 9: Tender 1-year contract to RB Raheem Mostert, pick up OLB Dekoda Watson contract option
March 8: Sign WR Marquise Goodwin to 3-year extension
February 27: Sign OT Garry Gilliam to 2-year extension
February 14: Sign C Daniel Kilgore to 2-year extension
February 8: Sign QB Jimmy Garoppolo to 5-year extension
February 7: Sign DE Cassius Marsh to 2-year extension
January 26: Sign LB Mark Nzeocha to 1-year extension