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NFL World Reacts To The 49ers' Veteran Player Release

A view of the center field logo in the San Francisco 49ers stadium.

SANTA CLARA, CA - AUGUST 24: A general view of the inside of Levi's Stadium prior to an NFL football game between the San Diego Chargers and San Francisco 49ers on August 24, 2014 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

The San Francisco 49ers are moving on from one their worst recent signings.

On Wednesday, the team officially released defensive end Dee Ford. General manager John Lynch indicated the move was likely after signing former first-round pick Robert Nkemdiche on Tuesday.

Before ending his Kansas City career with a costly offsides penalty in the AFC Championship Game, Ford recorded 13.5 sacks and seven forced fumbles in 2018. That prompted the 49ers to award him a five-year, $85 million deal with $33.35 million guaranteed.

However, he's played just 18 games over the last three seasons. After taking the field once in 2020, a back injury ended his 2021 after Week 7.

Injuries derailed any chance Ford had at making his mark in San Francisco. The 49ers certainly didn't get the return they expected, but the 31-year-old edge-rusher could help another team in the right situation.

Per The Athletic's David Lombardi, the release saves San Francisco $1.12 million in 2022 cap space. Ford will have time to pursue a fresh start before his ninth season.