Center Weston Richburg was not expected to return to the 49ers in the 2021 season, and his NFL future appears to be in serious question, too.
Richburg, 29, recently underwent hip surgery, NFL Media's Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday, citing sources.
Richburg sustained a torn patellar tendon in his left knee in December of 2018. That injury, along with a shoulder condition, kept Richburg out of action for the entire 2020 season.
Richburg, who has no injury protections in his contract, is scheduled to make $7.85 million for the 2021 season, along with $500,000 in potential bonuses. The 49ers would save approximately $4.5 million on the salary cap if they were to release Richburg, as expected.
The 49ers originally signed Richburg to a five-year, $47.5 million on the first day of free agency in March of 2018.
Richburg played 15 games in 2018 despite battling a leg injury that led to offseason surgery on his quadriceps.
He was playing at a high level in 2019 before sustaining the severe knee injury in the team’s Week 14 victory over the New Orleans Saints.
Richburg entered the NFL in 2014 as a second-round draft pick of the New York Giants.