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49ers likely find Armstead replacement with Elliott addition

49ers likely find Armstead replacement with Elliott addition originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

The 49ers now have the pieces in place to field a starting defensive line.

Free-agent defensive tackle Jordan Elliott, who started 32 games over the past two seasons for the Cleveland Browns, agreed to terms with the 49ers on a two-year contract, his agent confirmed Tuesday on social media.

Elliott appears to be in line to replace Arik Armstead, whose tenure with the 49ers has come to an end.

The 49ers proposed a new contract for Armstead that greatly reduces his scheduled payouts of $17.4 million in base salary with another $850,000 available in workout and roster bonuses.

Armstead has declined to accept the terms of the proposed contract, leading to the 49ers releasing him on Wednesday, a source told NBC Sports Bay Area.

That meant the 49ers had a gaping hole to fill in the middle of the defense line as the NFL’s open negotiating period began on Monday.

The 49ers were depleted at defensive tackle behind Javon Hargrave, whom the club signed to a four-year, $84 million contract a year ago.

Elliott, 26, becomes the 49ers’ likely starter at the interior defensive line position known as the three-technique.

He likely fits into the 49ers’ picture as a defender on base downs and can be expected to be subbed out on passing downs. Elliott registered 4.5 sacks, 57 tackles and eight tackles for loss over the past two seasons in Cleveland.

The only other defensive tackles on the roster who saw action last season with the 49ers are Kalia Davis and T.Y. McGill. The 49ers could also re-sign Kevin Givens, who appeared in all 20 games regular season and playoff games with one start.

On Monday, the 49ers reached contract agreements with free-agent defensive ends Leonard Floyd and Yetur Gross-Matos to join Nick Bosa.

Now, with the addition of Phillips, the 49ers have enough quantity and quality to field a starting defensive line with other opportunities to add more pieces through free agency and the draft.

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