Much has been made about who the San Francisco 49ers are going to pursue in free agency, but it will also be interesting to see if the team keeps any of their own players set to hit the open market.
Jimmy Garoppolo’s contract status obviously has everyone on the edge of their seat. But the uncertain future for starters like Eric Reid, Daniel Kilgore, Pierre Garçon and others will be interesting situations to follow.
The following list of 19 players are unrestricted free agents, which means that they can negotiate exclusively with the 49ers until the new league year begins on March 14. At that point, if remained unsigned, they are free to sign with any team they choose. San Francisco also has the option to use its franchise tag on one of the following players, a decision that would have to be made by March 6. Garoppolo is the top candidate to be tagged.
With that, here’s the rundown of unrestricted free agents.
C Tim Barnes
Barnes was cut prior to the regular season before rejoining the team in late November. Barnes did not appear in any games.
DE Garrett Celek
Carradine spent eight weeks of the season on Injured Reserve before returning in late November. He played in eight games (seven starts) and posted 19 tackles and 1.5 sacks.
LB Brock Coyle**
Coyle took over as a full-time starter after the 49ers released NaVorro Bowman. He played in all 16 games in 2017 and made a career-high 10 starts. Coyle finished with 62 total tackles, .5 sacks and one forced fumble.
DE Leger Douzable
Douzable proved to be a nice mid-season find for San Francisco. He started five games, recording 19 tackles and two sacks.
S Antone Exum Jr.
Exum was another in-season acquisition. He made one spot start in Week 12 against the Seattle Seahawks when Adrian Colbert, Jimmie Ward and Jaquiski Tartt were all out due to injury. He logged three tackles in three games played.
G Brandon Fusco
Fusco started all 16 games for the 49ers at right guard after signing just a one-year deal last offseason. Fusco earned plenty of tough guy points for playing through a partially torn bicep for much of the season.
QB Jimmy Garoppolo
We all know the story here. Garoppolo carried the 49ers down the stretch to five-straight wins. His 1,560 passing yards, seven touchdowns and 5-0 record set him up for a nice payday this offseason, whether it be in the form of a franchise tag or a new contract.
T Garry Gilliam
Gilliam appeared in eight games and made one start in place of Trent Brown at right tackle. Unfortunately, Gilliam ended up on Injured Reserve with a knee injury shortly after he took over the starting job.
CB Leon Hall
San Francisco added Hall, released him, and then brought him back for the remainder of the season. The veteran defensive back appeared in nine games (one start), made 16 tackles and forced one fumble.
RB Carlos Hyde
Hyde’s fourth NFL season was his most productive. His 1,290 yards from scrimmage, 59 receptions, 350 receiving yards and eight rushing touchdowns set new career highs. It was also the first time that Hyde made it through a full season without injury, something that won’t be taken lightly by teams considering signing the running back.
CB Asa Jackson**
Jackson played in four games before landing on season-ending Injured Reserve. He did not record a tackle.
CB Dontae Johnson
Johnson started all 16 games for the first time in his career. He had an up and down season highlighted by a pick-six against the Jacksonville Jaguars. That was his lone takeaway of the season to go along with 76 tackles.
DT Chris Jones
Jones got hurt in August and spent the entire season on Injured Reserve.
C Daniel Kilgore
Like Hyde, everyone was keen to see if Kilgore could make it through a full season. He did just that, starting all 16 games in 2017. In fact, he only missed one offensive snap all year.
DE Aaron Lynch
Lynch hurt his calf against the Washington Redskins in Week 6 which cost him some time. He was limited to just seven games (zero starts), one sack, nine tackles and one fumble recovery.
DE Cassius Marsh
Marsh played six games for the 49ers after being claimed off waivers from the New England Patriots. He posted two forced fumbles, two sacks and 10 tackles.
WR Louis Murphy
Murphy was cut after training camp and then brought back after the injury to Pierre Garçon. In seven games, he caught eight passes for 121 yards and one touchdown.
TE Logan Paulsen
Paulsen played in 14 games in 2017, mostly as a blocking tight end and a special teams player. He did not catch a pass.
S Eric Reid
Reid missed three games with a knee injury but played very well in 13 games this season. He posted 66 tackles in his first year at strong safety and intercepted two passes.
The 49ers also have one restricted free agent who is eligible to be tendered a contract. That means San Francisco has the option to match any offer the player receives.
LB Mark Nzeocha
Nzeocha appeared in two games and was used primarily on special teams. He did not record a tackle.