The 49ers are parting ways with a couple of notable veteran players to clear even more room under the salary cap.
The team announced it is releasing offensive lineman Garry Gilliam, 28, who has been with the team the past two years. The move reportedly will save the team $5.05 million in salary-cap space this season.
The Niners also will not pick up the 2019 option on veteran wide receiver Pierre Garcon, who was due to count $8.27 million against the cap in 2019, reported Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle. The move will save about $1 million, because the 49ers will still be liable for about $7.2 million in dead money against the cap, Branch reported.
Garcon, the first notable free agent signed by new general manager John Lynch two years ago, was hampered by injuries in both 2017 and 2018 with San Francisco, playing just 16 total games. Over that span he had 64 catches for 786 yards and a touchdown.
Gilliam, who started one game for the 49ers but was a valuable, experienced backup – notably at tackle – was a former Seahawks starter.
Earlier this offseason, the 49ers released veteran defensive lineman Earl Mitchell, which saved almost $3 million under the salary cap. Linebacker Malcolm Smith also could be released after June 1, which would save another $4 million, noted Kirk Larrabee of 247Sports.com.
The release of Gilliam and Garcon should put the 49ers at about $66 million under the salary cap as they head toward the free-agent signing period.