The San Francisco 49ers have decided on the future of their defensive line, reportedly making a pair of huge moves Monday involving two of the key pieces to their Super Bowl run last season.
First, the team and defensive end Arik Armstead agreed to a five-year, $85 million deal, according to multiple reports. Hours later, news broke of the team reportedly sending defensive tackle DeForest Buckner to the Indianapolis Colts in exchange for a first-round pick (No. 13 overall) in the 2020 NFL Draft.
According to those same reports, the Colts immediately agreed with Buckner to an extension that will average $21 million per season, making him the second-highest paid defensive tackle in annual average salary behind the Rams' Aaron Donald and third-highest among all defensive players, also behind Chicago Bears linebacker Khalil Mack.
Buckner was set to become a free agent after this season.
The 49ers were considering placing the franchise tag (worth approximately $17.8 million) on Armstead but instead were able to work out the deal. Armstead had 54 tackles, 10 sacks, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in 16 regular-season games. He had two more sacks in the postseason.
The 26-year-old Armstead has spent all five of his NFL seasons with the 49ers. He has 152 tackles and 19 sacks in 62 games (43 starts). Armstead was a first-round draft choice (17th overall) in 2015.
The 49ers took Buckner -- who, like Armstead, played at Oregon -- with the No. 7 overall pick a year later. Buckner, who turns 26 on Tuesday, had 62 tackles, nine tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries last season, returning one of those recoveries for his first career touchdown.
His best season was in 2018, when he had 67 tackles, 17 tackles for loss and 12 sacks -- all career-high marks -- and made his only Pro Bowl.
The 49ers were 13-3 last season, earning the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs and advancing to the Super Bowl, where they lost 31-20 to the Kansas City Chiefs.
--Field Level Media