Saturday, March 6, 2010

49ers Need to Act Now

49ers GM Scot McCloughan came on the radio the other day to talk 49ers free agency in this an uncapped year.
I was surpised to hear McCloughan talk mostly about how free the 49ers are to go out and spend money this free agency period. He described it as being able to spend just as much as any other team out there. Of course, not as much as Jerry Jones and the Cowboys because of their Ultra-Stadium revenue, but you get the point. 49er fans havent heard that in awhile. And the last time they did, Nate Clements came to the Bay Area for a wheel barrow full of cash. And the 49ers have certainly reaped the benefits of that...NOT.
The 49er fans who live in a fantasy world wanted the team to pick up someone like Julius Peppers or Brandon Marshall when there were far too many teams ready to overpay already going after him even before free agency started.
So far, the 49ers have done a poor job in this free agency period. We have not heard about them going after anyone or even a headline saying "49ers in talks with..." to satisfy the fans who actually pay attention.
Here is a deal that I feel should get done right now, no questions asked. There is a player which not many may know of because he plays in St. Louis and has an extraordinarily long name. Oshiomogho Atogwe is a safety for the St. Louis Rams with game the size of his name. He is the pride of that Rams defense, which isnt saying much seeing as the team has the 1st overall pick in the 2010 draft, but he is a stud nonetheless with playmaking abilities, something that the 49ers have lacked in recent years.
Atogwe had 72 tackles last season and 2 interceptions. Those are just about the same stats as new NY Giants safety Antrel Rolle had last season (72 tackles and 4 interceptions), except that Rolle just signed a 5 year/ $37 Million deal yesterday, in which $15 Million is guaranteed, making him the highest paid safety in the game.
The Rams tendered Atogwe last week at the lowest tender possible at $1.226 Million. Almost a smack in the face. Teams now have the option to make offers to Atogwe, which the Rams have 7 days to decide whether or not to match. And with the Rams having to sign the #1 overall pick in April, I would say a legitimate offer would put Atogwe out of the Rams' price range.
Here is why the 49ers may have the best possibility to scoop up a gem like Atogwe. He went to Stanford University and is currently rehabbing from off-season shoulder surgery somewhere in California where he resides in the offseason. Add that to the fact that he is dating Mike Singletary's daughter and the 49ers may have something.
But the 49ers need to act now if they are serious about him. All signs point to the 49ers having a great chance to bag him. All that needs to be done is to pull the trigger.
With the acquisition of Atogwe, the 49ers wont have to move Clements to safety any more, or even think about it. Clements is due for a break-out season at cornerback in 2010 anyway. And wouldn't an Atogwe/ Dashon Goldson combo look good in the pass defense?
In other 49ers free agency news, I think you are going to see David Baas, Ahmad Brooks, Aubrayo Franklin, and Barry Sims stay with the 49ers. While Arnaz Battle, Dre Bly, and Isaac Bruce are looking like they're going to leave.
Time is running out for the 49ers. Teams who were serious about upgrading their team already made their moves. Where are the 49ers?

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