San Francisco 49ers free agency preview: Changing of the guard by the Bay
MAR 3, 11:44a ET | Ross Jones
Rotowire: Mar 12 / 10:55a ET
News: 49ers' GM Trent Baalke stated that the team plans to bring Brooks back for the 2015 season, CSN Bay Area reports.
Impact: There was a strong assumption that the 49ers and Brooks would part ways this offseason via a trade or a release. Baalke claims they the team has no such plans, and will keep the veteran linebacker for the upcoming season. The rift between Brooks and the team started when reports leaked of a failed trade to Cleveland. Then Brooks was benched for a game, and also benched himself for another when he became disgruntled with the playing time he was losing to rookie Aaron Lynch. The loss of Dan Skuta to Jaguars this offseason probably influenced the 49ers' decision to keep Brooks on board. He will battle with Lynch for the starting outside linebacker role aside Aldon Smith during training camp.
Rotowire: Jan 3 / 11:52a ET
News: Brooks had an up-and-down 2014 season, finishing with 30 tackles (25 solo), six sacks, and a fumble forced.
Impact: Brooks came into the 2014 season overweight, and had to slim down before being deployed in his usual role. Then trade rumors and a reduced role caused Brooks to be visibly disgruntled, to the point that he pulled himself out of a game. Things seemed to be smoothed over after that, as Brooks began to receive the majority of snaps opposite Aldon Smith down the stretch. Still, the damage may already be done between Brooks and the 49ers, and an offseason trade could be a very likely scenario for the veteran linebacker.