NFC Notes: 49ers, Rams, Saints



Matt Maiocco of NBC Bay Area writes the 49ers will face some notable decisions involving DE Arik Armstead, WR Pierre Garcon and LB Malcolm Smith this offseason.

  • Regarding Armstead, the 49ers picked up his $9 million fifth-year option last year and have until March to decide whether to release him or that sum becomes fully guaranteed for the 2019 season.
  • Maiocco mentions that the 49ers are not expected to pick up the option on Garcon’s contract, which will allow him to become a free agent and saves the team $1 million of cap room.
  • San Francisco could pick up $1.2 million of cap room by cutting Smith, who is scheduled to make a little more than $4 million in salary and bonuses this season.


  • Albert Breer mentions that the Rams could promote TEs coach Shane Waldron to QBs coach after Zac Taylor officially accepts the Bengals’ coaching job and then hire Wes Phillips as their new TEs coach. 
  • Breer adds that Phillips taking over for Taylor as QBs coach is also an option. 


  • According to Albert Breer, Saints WR Michael Thomas is asking for similar money as Odell Beckham Jr got from the Giants when he signed a five-year, $90 million extension that included $65 million guaranteed.
  • Breer notes that the Saints have only committed to paying one offensive player big money and that was Jimmy Graham before they turned around and traded him to the Seahawks a year later. Instead, the Saints have invested in quarterback and their offensive line, so it will be interesting to see if they’re willing to pay Thomas $18 million per year. 
  • Breer wonders if the Saints may explore a contract extension for DT Sheldon Rankins this offseason, rather than pick up his fifth-year option when he may not be 100 percent in 2019 after rupturing his Achilles late in the year. 
  • Breer says the Saints want to re-sign RB Mark Ingram, but the only question is at what price.  
  • According to Josh Katzenstein, the Saints actually signed TE Garrett Griffin to a three-year, minimum contract upon promoting him to their active roster for the playoffs. He would’ve become an exclusive rights free agent this offseason. 
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