The San Francisco 49ers’ offseason is underway and one of the team’s first moves was to bring back quarterback Josh Johnson. Jimmy Garoppolo along with Johnson are now the only quarterbacks on the Niners roster for next season, something that will change before training camp.
Johnson is one of 15 players the 49ers signed to Reserve/Future contracts giving them maximum flexibility for next season. These signings included three receivers indicating a position the team will continue to add depth to this offseason. As Bleacher Report detailed, Future contracts allow the 49ers to keep another team from signing a player, but the deals do not count against the salary cap.
It’s the same as a regular active-roster contract, with the regular rules for minimum veteran salaries, cap charges, signing bonuses, etc. The only difference is that it doesn’t take effect until the start of the next League Year…
Teams can sign players to futures contracts as soon as the previous regular season is over, but the contract won’t count against the salary cap or 53-man limit. Instead, it’ll count against the salary cap and 90-man camp limit of the following season.
In the meantime, the player goes on the reserve/futures list and can’t be signed by any other team.
It is unclear if Johnson will make it to the 49ers’ final 53-man roster heading into next season, but it gives the team an additional option to explore at a position that is sure to be heavily scrutinized throughout the offseason. While the 49ers have maintained their commitment to Jimmy Garoppolo, it would be a surprise if the team did not at least explore other options at quarterback this offseason.
Johnson Did Not Take a Snap for the Niners in 2020
Despite nearly every quarterback on the roster sustaining an injury, Johnson did not take a snap for the Niners this season. San Francisco signed Johnson to the team’s practice squad in November 2020, but the quarterback tested positive for COVID-19 shortly after he joined the team.
The Niners opted to also sign Josh Rosen from the Bucs’ practice squad after Johnson landed on the COVID list. Heading into the offseason, head coach Kyle Shanahan indicated the Niners “have a starting quarterback” referring to Garoppolo.
“We have a starting quarterback, but in order to know where these guys are going to be, we’ve got to get either resign the guys we’ve got or see if we can upgrade them through the draft or free agency,” Shanahan noted, via NinersNation.com. “In order to do that, you have to evaluate everything, so you know how to stack them and stuff. So, definitely will be looking at a lot more of that stuff this year than we did last year.”
Receivers Kevin White & Jauan Jennings Headline the List of 49ers’ Future Contract Signings
Wide receivers Kevin White and Jauan Jennings headline the remainder of the 49ers’ Future signings. White is the former No. 7 pick of the Bears in the 2015 NFL Draft but the receiver has had a disappointing career compared to the lofty expectations that came with being a top-10 selection.
White played in three games for the Niners this season but failed to notch a catch making more of an impact on special teams. Here is a look at the full list of the 49ers’ Reserve/Future contracts the team recently announced.
|CB||Tim Harris Jr.|