The San Francisco 49ers have agreed to sign former Atlanta Falcons running back Tevin Coleman to a two-year, $10 million deal, multiple outlets reported Wednesday. Coleman, who turns 26 next month, was widely considered the second-best running back on the free agent market after Le'Veon Bell, who is reportedly joining the New York Jets for more than $13 million annually.
Coleman had 167 carries for 800 yards and four rushing touchdowns while starting 14 of 16 games last season, with nominal starter Devonta Freeman injured. He averaged a career-high 4.8 yards per carry, while adding 32 catches for 276 yards and five scores. A third-round pick in 2015, Coleman played for 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan during his first two seasons in Atlanta, where Shanahan was the offensive coordinator. During the Falcons' record-setting campaign in 2016, Coleman had 118 carries for 520 yards and eight touchdowns along with 31 catches for a career-high 421 receiving yards and three scores.
San Francisco signed Jerick McKinnon to a hefty contract -- four years, $30 million -- last March, but he missed all of 2018 with a torn ACL. While McKinnon has already been paid $12 million, he has no guarantees remaining on his contract, though it's unclear if the 49ers intend to move on. Meanwhile, the 49ers also will re-sign safety Jimmie Ward on a one-year, $5 million deal, per multiple reports Wednesday.
According to SiriusXM NFL, the deal's base value is $4.5 million, with the remaining $500,000 linked to playing time. Ward, 27, was a first-round pick by San Francisco in 2014 and played out the fifth-year option of his rookie contract in 2018, but he has missed 29 games to injury in his career. That includes 16 games over the last two seasons because of forearm fractures and other minor ailments.
In 51 career games (31 starts), Ward has 186 tackles, 21 passes defensed and two interceptions. He spent the last two seasons at safety after spending most of his time at cornerback through his first three seasons. --Field Level Media