Only three draft picks aren’t signed, and one of them is the third overall pick in the draft.
With the 49ers starting training-camp practice on Friday, the new brain trust in Santa Clara hopes that the deadline drives a decision.
“Yeah, we’re still working on that,” G.M. John Lynch told reporters on Thursday. “There’s been a lot of productive conversations here in the last couple of days. Just left some of those, and we’re hopeful that we can get this done in the necessary time. I think, I’m aware from experience as a player, and we all are in the business of football, that deadlines typically get these things done and we’re drawing close to that. And, like I said, hopeful that we can continue to make progress and tie this thing up so Solomon can be here with his teammates.”
There’s clearly a sense of urgency to get it done, as demonstrated by coach Kyle Shanahan.
“You want him there right away,” Shanahan said. “I’m pretty confident that we will get it done, but it’s part of the business. It’s something that you’ve got to deal with a little bit every year. That doesn’t always happen, but I think everyone who’s been in the business has been through it. You totally understand it and I think Solomon wants to be here as bad as anyone. I know we want him here as bad as anyone and I’m confident we will get it done, but can’t worry about it too much. I think it will end up being alright.”
It’s unclear why a deal hasn’t been done for Thomas, who’s in the same draft spot — and represented by the same firm — as Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa a year ago. For Bosa, the issues were guarantee offsets and signing-bonus cash flow. Which are basically the only two issues that can be negotiated under the rookie wage scale.
So it’s safe to assume that the 49ers and Thomas are squabbling about guarantee offsets, signing-bonus cash flow, or both.