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SI: The 49ers should cut Mike Person

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The team would save $2.5 million

Super Bowl LIV - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images

We have exhausted nearly every “cut” option on the San Francisco 49ers. While many believe the Niners will do everything to keep the core, there are some cuts the team can make that may not seem like much, but if you save a million here and there without there being a dropoff, wouldn’t you do it? Linebacker Mark Nzeocha is a prime example. The 49ers have three starters locked in, and Azeez Al-Shaair was a promising backup. While you still could use depth and special teams, the 49ers can pluck another speedy linebacker from the undrafted free agent pool, as they did with Al-Shaair last year, and save $1.5 million by cutting Nzeocha.

We’ve talked about the running back like Tevin Coleman and veteran receiver Marquise Goodwin as potential cap casualties. We haven’t discussed a name that would catch us off guard. Could the 49ers cut a starter? Sports Illustrated believes Mike Person could be playing for a different team in 2020:

The 49ers collapsed in Super Bowl LIV in large part because of their inability to contain Chiefs defensive tackle.

Keeping elite interior defensive linemen in check is an extremely difficult thing to do. However, right guard Mike Person’s struggles on the interior of the offensive line were stark, with the pressure that led to Jimmy Garoppolo’s first interception conceded by the veteran right guard.

San Francisco would save $2.5million by releasing Person. No dead money is attached to his contract and, with the versatile Daniel Brunskill – an exclusive rights free agent – having filled in exceptionally well when Person was out through injury, the 49ers have a viable alternative.

The Niners are also expected to look for interior line help in the draft. Person has done a solid job in his second stint with the Niners but, in an offseason where the 49ers need all the wiggle room they can get, he is expendable.

Person struggled against the top defensive tackles the 49ers faced. To be fair to him, there is not much Person could do about Chris Jones batting those passes down. There is a lot of luck and timing involved in batted passes, which is why we don’t see them very often. In the 14 other games Jones played in, he had three batted passes.

Nearly a year ago, Person signed a three-year contract extension. If the team believes Brunskill is the better option, wouldn’t it make sense to penny pinch and move on from Person? I believe so. Person was available when needed, which goes a long way for a team that has suffered as many injuries as San Francisco. Kyle Shanahan said during the combine earlier this week that Brunskill has impressed everywhere, and could even play center if the 49ers needed him to. That $2.5 million could be the difference in bringing back a player like Emmanuel Sanders. Finding a player to replace Person is up to the personnel department. Finding late-round gems has been their specialty for the last few years. What say you?

Poll

Would you cut Person to save $2.4 million

This poll is closed

  • 54%
    Yes
    (967 votes)
  • 18%
    No
    (338 votes)
  • 27%
    I’m fine either way
    (484 votes)
1789 votes total Vote Now