The 49ers opted not to use the franchise tag for the second straight year on safety Dashon Goldson.
Perhaps they should have.
The thinking in league circles is that Goldson will be the hottest safety in a fairly deep market. Hotter even than Ravens safety Ed Reed, whose lack of an agent puts him at a distinct disadvantage.
When the legal tampering period opens on Saturday, teams may communicate only with agents. If a player represents himself, the teams cannot talk to the player.
Thus, by the time Reed is fair game, other deals for other safeties may already be done.
The other big names on the market include former Packers safety Charles Woodson, Falcons safety William Moore, and Jets safety LaRon Landry.
Per a league source, the Jets want to keep Landry, but they’re having trouble putting the money together, given their cap situation. Other teams that could be interested in Landry include the Titans, Colts (who have plenty of cap room), and the Cardinals.
The 49ers could target any of the available safeties, if they lose Goldson.