Christian McCaffrey

How CMC's contract extension impacts 49ers' 2024 salary-cap space

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Christian McCaffrey’s record-setting contract extension with the 49ers is a resounding win-win situation for both parties involved. 

The superstar running back’s two-year, $38 million contract extension with San Francisco created $7.4 million in 2024 salary-cap space for the franchise, per Spotrac.

The 27-year-old’s multi-year extension leaves the 49ers with approximately $31.9 million in 2024 cap space, following the $18 million that Arik Armstead’s release generated. San Francisco sits seventh in the league in Top 51 room.

How San Francisco decides to use the extra cap space continues to be a key developing storyline. Although, a growing possibility is the funds being leveraged towards a contract extension for a pivotal player like wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk. 

McCaffrey, who now will be under contract until he turns 31 years old, already was the NFL’s highest-paid running back when the Carolina Panthers traded him to San Francisco in 2022, having signed a four-year, $64 million contract extension in 2020. 

The 49ers will have a dead cap hit of $19.7 million this season after McCaffrey’s deal, which transpired after “respectful” talks between his camp and the 49ers’ brass. 

The running back’s historic payday comes on the heels of his 2023 Offensive Player of the Year award-winning campaign, and on the 49ers’ first day of mandatory minicamp. 

It’s now evident that San Francisco and McCaffrey are smooth sailing from here through 2027. 

The same can’t be said about the franchise and Aiyuk, but a move like Tuesday’s puts the 49ers closer to striking distance.

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