To my surprise it looks like the San Francisco 49ers will indeed bring back OLB Ahmad Brooks to start the season.
[Related: Three 49ers’ That Could Be Cap Casualties In 2015]
I went on record saying that Brooks would likely be cut due to his high salary for the upcoming season as he’s scheduled to make $7,055,000, however GM Trent Baalke quickly shot that down. “While all that was being written, I just sat back and looked at it because it was speculation based on our cap number and the cash flow that we had leading into free agency. A lot of assumptions were made, but wrongly,” Baalke told CSN Bay Area.
One surprising name not out there but shopped b4 trade deadline: 49er LB Ahmad Brooks. CLE was in talks but then 49ers bailed on it late
— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) November 2, 2014
But the scenario to cut Brooks did make sense for many reasons starting with the report by Fox Sports Jay Glazer as he said the team actually considered trading Brooks to the Cleveland Browns. A report that was made on Nov. 2.
Not shortly thereafter Brooks was benched by the team on Nov. 19 against the New York Giants for getting into an argument with then defensive line coach Jim Tomsula.
“On the ride back home on the plane. I felt bad. I felt bad and I didn’t like that feeling…so I decided to apologize to Jimmy Tomsula because that’s the guy that I said those words to,” Brooks told beat writers. What was exactly said? “I’m going to keep that behind the scenes,” Brooks said.
Then on Dec. 7 Brooks was at it again as he was benched for missing a team meeting. A game that they lost in the Battle of the Bay, Brooks was seen on the sidelines with his helmet off and did not take partake in any snaps.
To make matters worse, OLB Aaron Lynch was playing extremely well in Brooks’ absence prompting the 49ers to use him in more sub-packages when Brooks eventually did return to the lineup as he tied Brooks for the team-lead in sacks (6).
However, it looks like all that doesn’t matter as Brooks will indeed be on the opening day roster. Had the team cut Brooks the team would have needed to account for $2,348,750 in ‘dead money’ but would gain $4,706,250 in salary cap space.
In eight NFL seasons Brooks has recorded 275 tackles, 41 sacks, 11 forced fumbles, and 25 pass break-ups.
What are your thoughts Forever Faithful? Should the team had cut Brooks and gave Lynch the starting role? Give us your feedback and start the debate.