The San Francisco 49ers have a tight salary cap going into free agency.
As it stands, they are sitting on $10.9 million of space per OverTheCap. That isn't whole lot of room to work with, especially with a few key free agents that need to be re-signed.
Because their salary cap is scarce, the 49ers have to prioritize certain positions of need to go after. That means they cannot look to sign players at positions they are set at. This does not include players who get signed on "flyer" deals because that is practically standard.
Here are three positions the 49ers must avoid in free agency.
Even with Kendrick Bourne set to hit the free agent market, the 49ers are still set at wide receiver. There should not be a single signing at this position. It is not like the 49ers use a ton of 11-personnel to begin with (three wide receivers). The only real argument to entertain here for why the 49ers would sign a receiver is because of the questionable health of Deebo Samuel. You could even throw in Brandon Aiyuk in there if you will.
But the 49ers would be better off just drafting someone in the second or third round to fill out that role. Plus, Richie James Jr. is more than capable of having a role in the offense. He has the talent and proves it whenever the lead for production falls on him. San Francisco is set at this position. Any movement to acquire a player in free agency would be irresponsible.
Does linebacker really need much explaining for why the 49ers should not sign a player here? In case you are unsure, the defense already has an All Pro player in Fred Warner and an ascending talent in Dre Greenlaw. I can even lump Azeez Al-Shaair in there as a player to help feel content about the linebacker position. There is no reason for the 49ers to have ANY interest in a free agent linebacker this offseason.
They are more than set here. The only type of transaction or talk of contract that should be done with a linebacker is Warner. You can bet your bottom dollar his agent and the 49ers are going to have a nice little back-and-forth as the offseason progresses. Kind of like George Kittle last season.
Keeping tight end off of the 49ers' interest board in free agency is not because of George Kittle. If anything, the 49ers should add a player because Kittle always manages to get hurt and lose time. However, this season the 49ers would do best to steer clear of tight end. Remember, they had tapped the shoulder of Austin Hooper last offseason until the Cleveland Browns outbid them.
San Francisco has Ross Dwelley and Charlie Woerner. Dwelley has been proven a capable backup, and they have to develop Woerner. They can always re-sign Jordan Reed to another flyer deal if they need the production that badly. Still, no serious tight end that will cost more than a million or two should be brought on with the state of the salary cap.