“Per Source, the 49ers have recently expressed interest in Free Agent pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney,” Pick 6 tweeted. “Seemed to be just testing the waters, and nothing is imminent.”
Sports Illustrated’s Leo Luna reported that the 49ers have not given Clowney an offer but were “gauging interest” on the pass rusher.
“I don’t believe there was an offer exchanged or anything, seems like it was just gauging interest,” Luna noted.
Could the 49ers Realistically Sign Clowney?
According to Over the Cap, the Niners have $12.1 million of cap space, but Sports Illustrated added that this could expand to more than $19 million with a few roster moves. At this point, Clowney is most likely to sign a one-year deal and re-test the free-agent waters next offseason.
San Francisco has enough cap space to consider signing Clowney on a short-term deal. The NFC West has become an arms race over the offseason as the Seahawks pulled off a blockbuster trade for Jamal Adams. Arizona even joined the fray by trading for DeAndre Hopkins during the free agency period.
The 49ers traded DeForest Buckner earlier this offseason and adding Clowney for the right price would be an intriguing roster move. The challenge is many teams have tried to find the “right price,” and Clowney has been content to wait things out until he finds a contract to his liking.
The 49ers are currently trying to sign George Kittle to a long-term extension. San Francisco does fit Clowney’s criteria of playing for a contender, but that requirement seems to be a bit loose given the teams the pass rusher has been connected to throughout the offseason.
A Clowney Signing Is not Expected to Come Soon
We are entering the fifth month of the Clowney sweepstakes, but just because training camp has started does not mean a deal is imminent. According to Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson, his NFL sources “don’t believe his signing is coming ‘soon.'”
“Spoke to several NFL sources involved in the Jadeveon Clowney pursuit. All expressed that they don’t believe his signing is coming ‘soon’,” Robinson noted on Twitter. “One pointed out that Clowney didn’t report until the end of August last year and may be inclined to do the same this year with his signing.”
The Titans have been one of the teams linked to Clowney throughout the offseason, but it does not appear anything is close with the pass rusher. Titans head coach Mike Vrabel appeared frustrated when he was recently asked again about Clowney’s status.
“Right now, J.D. is not under contract with the Tennessee Titans – that’s all I can tell you guys,” Vrabel said, per the Titans website. “He is a free agent, one that we’ve had contact with. But he is not under contract with the Tennessee Titans, and that’s all I can tell you.”