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It seemed like a solid idea back in 2019 when the San Francisco 49ers traded a second-round pick for accomplished edge rusher Dee Ford.
Ford, only 28 at the time, was coming off a three-year span with Kansas City in which he collected double-digit sacks in two of those seasons — 10 in 2016 and 13 more in 2018.
But after the trade and after the 49ers signed Ford to a five-year contract worth $87.5 million, the grand idea of acquiring Ford soured.
Ford has played only 18 games with only two starts the past three seasons in San Francisco as he’s battled injuries. He’s contributed only 378 snaps and 9.5 sacks during his time with the 49ers.
And so his time with the 49ers is ending.
“Do not expect him to be on our team,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan told reporters Tuesday afternoon.
Ford played only one game in 2020 before being placed on injured reserve with neck and back injuries. He came back to play only six games last year before being placed on injured reserve again. He’s not started any games in the past two seasons because the Niners basically found a way to move forward without him as a fulltime player.
Ford isn’t at the team’s mandatory training camp, which began Tuesday, because he’s been excused by the team. Ford is expected to take a physical when he’s able to pass one, perhaps later this week, and then he’ll be granted his release.
The 49ers will save $1.12 million in salary cap space once Ford is released but he will leave a dead cap hit of nearly $6 million over the next two seasons and nearly $1 million for three years after that.
Ford, now 30, will be free to sign with any team he wishes.
Follow on Twitter: @ArmandoSalguero