The San Francisco 49ers used the franchise tag on safety Dashon Goldson in 2012. With no long-term deal negotiated between player and team, the Niners may have to use it again this year.
According to Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com, it’s not a certainty that Goldson will be tagged.
Per Maiocco, Goldson has not yet been informed of the team’s plans. The 49ers have until March 4 to apply the tag.
Paid $6.2 million in 2012, Goldson would be entitled to a 20-percent raise. That puts his franchise tender at $7.44 million.
As Maicco explains it, tagging Goldson would compel the 49ers to dump Alex Smith’s $8.5 million salary.
The problem is that, if the 49ers trade Smith, they’d need to have enough cap space — at least for a moment — to carry both Goldson and Smith on the roster. All teams must be in compliance with the salary cap as of 4:00 p.m. ET on March 12. And no trades can be finalized until 4:00 p.m. ET on March 12.