2011 NFL Free Agency: 49ers Lose Aubrayo Franklin, Who Signs With Saints

There was some news on Monday stating that free agent nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin had re-signed with the 49ers. It now appears that someone jumped the gun, because ESPN's Adam Schefter just tweeted that Franklin has reached a one-year deal with the New Orleans Saints. The tweet suggests that the 49ers were close to re-signing him:

Filed to ESPN: New Orleans pulled off free-agent upset, reaching agreement with former 49ers DT Aubrayo Franklin on a one-year deal.    

Perhaps the 49ers did get serious about bringing Franklin back, and somebody within believed the deal to be close. It makes sense, Franklin hadn't received much attention on the free agent market up until this point, so the 49ers made an offer and the Saints swooped in and offered him more money.

Financial terms aren't yet available, but one has to figure that the 49ers kept the dollar amount low because of the deal given to Ray McDonald at the start of free agency. Because they acted quickly on that front, they had to get Franklin at a good price, which was the reason they brought him in on Sunday.

Isaac Sopoaga will be the starting nose tackle in 2011, or at least that's where he's slotted in right now. Ricky Jean Francois and undrafted rookie free agent signing Ian Williams will likely compete for the backup role.

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