Nothing But Expected
June 4 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
The 49ers experienced a different fiscal end of the NFL year than they had become used to in recent years. Rather than scrounging to get under the salary cap, the team had the ability to relax. They had one move to make on June 1st, though it did not become official until Monday, due to NFL offices being closed on the weekends. So instead of seeing the likes of Jerry Rice hit the waiver wires, the 49ers parted ways with Guard Ray Brown.
While parting ways with Brown does not meet the magnitude of releasing Jerry Rice, it doesnít go unnoticed either. Ray Brown was a heck of a player for the 49ers. It is believed that over the last two years he allowed only one sack get by him. A truly great offensive lineman, but an even better person. No, parting ways with Brown isnít the same as releasing Rice, but it certainly leaves an impression.
The 49ers were well prepared for the move, and gave Brown ample notice too. They even tried to talk the veteran in to retirement, but it didnít work. Taking Browns place will be guard Dave Fiore who is shifting to the left side of the line to make room for free agent acquisition Ron Stone.
Brown will certainly be missed as a 49er. His charity working, especially with the United Way campaigns, was a great asset to the Bay Area. The 39-year old brown is hoping to find a home for at least one more year before seeking retirement.