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As expected, the San Francisco 49ers did not acquire any additional draft compensation through the NFL’s compensatory pick process. The criteria for awarding compensatory picks boils down to teams losing more in free agency than they gained. Here is the NFL’s exact wording and explanation for how the picks are awarded:
Under the rules for compensatory draft selections, a team losing more or better compensatory free agents (“CFA”) than it acquires in the previous year is eligible to receive compensatory draft picks.
The compensatory picks will be positioned within the third through seventh rounds based on the value of the compensatory free agents lost.
Compensatory free agents are determined by a formula based on salary, playing time and postseason honors. The formula was developed by the NFL Management Council. Not every free agent lost or signed by a club is covered by this formula. No club may receive more than four compensatory picks in any one year. If a club qualifies for more than four compensatory picks after offsetting each CFA lost by each CFA gained of an equal or higher value, the four highest remaining selections will be awarded to the club.
The Collective Bargaining Agreement limits the number of compensatory selections to the number of clubs then in the League (32). This year, one club, the New York Giants, qualified for a compensatory selection under the net loss formula but will not receive that pick because the final numerical value of the CFA who was lost ranked 33rd among the final numerical values of all compensatory selections. The New York Giants will receive compensatory selections for other CFAs lost whose final numerical values ranked within the top 32.
The 49ers acquired Dee Ford through a franchise tag-and-trade with the Kansas City Chiefs last offseason and signed a pair of key players in Kwon Alexander and Tevin Coleman (Daniel Brunskill, Jordan Matthews, Jason Verrett and others were of course among the other signees).
Coming off a 4-12 season, it’s not all that surprising that San Francisco didn’t lose much in free agency. Cassius Marsh, Alfred Morris and Bradley Pinion were probably the three “biggest” names to move elsewhere, but the value of what the 49ers brought in clearly exceeded those loses.
Meanwhile, both the Seattle Seahawks and Los Angeles Rams added picks in this year’s draft (number in round, followed by overall pick).
Rams: Round 3 (40, 104)
Seahawks: Round 3 (37, 101), Round 4 (38, 144), Round 6 (35, 214)
Barring a trade (Marquise Goodwin’s name has reportedly been on the market, Solomon Thomas could be an option) 49ers will enter the draft with just six draft picks, and one — the 31st overall selection — in the first four rounds.
The Rams will have seven picks, but no first-rounder. This gives them a pair of third-round picks along with their limited cap space, currently projected at about $14.8 million.
Seattle now has nine picks, including a pair of second-rounders, plus a projected $44.7 million in cap space.