Enter San Francisco, who, despite investing multiple first round picks into its defensive line in recent years, wasn't satisfied with their group of pass rushers.
But the 49ers also run a 4-3, though it's different from most. He has 30.5 sacks in 67 games since joining the Chiefs as the No. 23 overall pick in the 2014 National Football League draft. After all, the Chiefs made him expendable because they're switching from a 3-4 front to a 4-3 under new coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.
Ford, 28, was amenable to playing 2019 on the franchise tag, but Kansas City is shifting away from the 3-4 defensive scheme it used under former defensive coordinator Bob Sutton, who was sacked at the end of the season after leading the NFL's 31st-ranked defense.
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The Chiefs had placed the franchise tag on Ford last week, with the intention of trying to trade him, as reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter. His breakout campaign came one year after an injury-riddled 2017 and two years after a breakout campaign in which he registered 10 sacks and 17 quarterback hurries. Ford recorded 51 total tackles and 13 sacks in 2018, matching a career high set in 2016. The one-year franchise tag for linebackers is worth $15,443,000 in 2019. He played in a 4-3 during his college career at Auburn.
That has the potential to be a premier pass rushing foursome which could be swing the team's historic takeaway numbers in the other direction.
From that perspective, adding Ford for a 2020 second-round pick, which will likely be further down the board than the No. 36 selection in next month's draft, makes this a good deal for San Francisco. I think we're also looking for powerful players. It has always been believed that the 49ers would select an edge rusher with the No. 2 overall pick.