49ers Urged to Sign 3-Time Pro Bowler in Free Agency After Star’s Exit from Dolphins

Melvin Ingram

Getty Former Miami Dolphins defensive end Melvin Ingram practices before an NFL game.

The San Francisco 49ers have put together an already impressive roster, but the NFC West team is being linked to a free agency move to elevate them further. The pipeline between the Miami Dolphins and San Francisco 49ers is already prevalent, but it could grow even more so depending on Melvin Ingram.

Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel has found initial success after leaving San Francisco, bringing over familiar faces from the 49ers like running backs Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson Jr. He also brought in Ingram after the 34-year-old’s 2021 stints with the Kansas City Chiefs and Pittsburgh Steelers.

Bleacher Report’s Joe Tansey wrote that the 49ers should sign Ingram after his single season with McDaniel. For Tansey, improving the pass rushing depth is one of the few places San Francisco can improve.

“Ingram can still be productive at this point in his career, and he might be a good insurance option for the 49ers to have alongside Bosa and new defensive tackle Javon Hargrave,” Tansey wrote in a June 28 story. “The 49ers can also plug into their connections in Miami to get a strong scouting report on Ingram and if he would fit their defensive style.”

Melvin Ingram Plies Trade with Miami Dolphins

For the better part of nine years, Ingram was one of the most recognizable and best players in the Chargers organization. The former South Carolina standout took time to develop but was a consistent force by his fourth season.

From 2015 to 2019, Ingram played 77 games for the Chargers and totaled 43 sacks and forced 10 fumbles in the process. He earned three Pro Bowl roster spots during that span, coming in three straight years (2017, 2018 and 2019).

His final season with Los Angeles in 2020 was a bust, with Ingram playing in seven games and making zero sacks. Hopping around between the Chiefs and Steelers didn’t pan out in 2022, when he made just two sacks in 15 appearances.

Joining forces with McDaniel reignited his production, though. Despite starting only three games, Ingram totaled six sacks and contributed a forced fumble as well.

49ers’ New Pass Rusher Has ‘Critical’ Role

In a June 21 story, Heavy Sports’ Matt Lombardo broke down some of the most important roles around the NFL. For the 49ers, the selection of defensive end Clelin Ferrell may surprise you.

San Francisco will be leaning on Nick Bosa and Drake Jackson, but Lombardo highlighted the importance of Ferrell coming in to produce if either play is hurt or in need of a replacement.

The San Francisco 49ers are anchored by one of the most dominant offensive lines in the league, headlined by defending Defensive Player of The Year, Nick Bosa,” Lombardo wrote. “Ferrell arrives in the Bay Area following one of the more productive seasons of his career, logging a pair of sacks, but also adding 23 quarterback pressures, as a rotational rusher along the Raiders’ defensive line… San Francisco is historically deep up front, but Ferrell would need to play at a high level if Bosa or Drake Jackson wind up missing time,”

Ferrell has never been a high-volume defensive end, but a new opportunity with the 49ers may be exactly what he needs to raise his stock and kickstart his NFL career.