We just discussed the top-10 unrestricted free agents for 2021 on the San Francisco 49ers. As the team and star tight end George Kittle continue to work out a contract extension—one that may reach $20 million—could the Niners extend another player before Kittle? The Athletic’s Matt Barrows believes that could be the case:
In addition, the 49ers probably would love to extend linebacker Fred Warner at the end of the upcoming season. He’d only have one more year remaining on his rookie deal at that point. The 49ers also could ink extensions with two guys who could see new deals this year: Bourne and running back Raheem Mostert, who have outplayed their current contracts. Mostert, in fact, could see a deal get done ahead of Kittle’s.
Barrows mentioned in his article that there were talks earlier this offseason about wide receiver Kendrick Bourne receiving a three-year extension before COVID-19.
Mostert is signed through 2021 and won’t be an unrestricted free agent until 2022. An extension may have to wait until next offseason for Raheem, but, while he may not technically “start” every game, the plan appears for Mostert to lead the team in carries and snaps. That doesn’t mean we are out of the woods with Tevin Coleman trotting out there for the first couple of series.
Warner’s contract extension hasn’t been discussed much, but it’s coming, and it’s not going to be cheap as Warner has proven quickly he’s one of the better linebackers in the NFL. Looking at the top-five annual salaries for linebackers in the league:
Bobby Wagner - $18 million
C.J. Mosley - $17 million
Myles Jack - $14.2 million
Deion Jones - $14.2 million
Shaq Thompson - $13.5 million
Wagner is the only player older than 30 on the list. Do any of those names come close to the player that Warner is? The answer is no. When you factor in inflation to the equation, Warner is getting, at worst, $15-$16 million a year. As Barrows pointed out, Warner will only have one year left on his contract. Assuming he continues to progress as a player, nobody would blame Warner for wanting to play on a new contract. In 2021, Warner’s base salary is $982,000.