First-round contract standoffs that linger into training camp used to be: (1) much more common; and (2) a much bigger deal. In recent years, the relatively rare impasse that prompts a prominent player to pass on showing up for practice is widely met with shrugs.
That shouldn’t be the case. A brand-new player, with each passing day, misses one or two full practices that otherwise would help the player prepare to hit the ground sprinting once the regular season begins. As fewer and fewer of them draw that line in the sand, it should be a much bigger deal when it happens.
In Chicago, G.M. Ryan Pace expressed optimism four days ago that No. 8 overall selection Roquan Smith would soon sign a contract. The linebacker still isn’t in camp, however.
The news that the 49ers have signed tackle Mike McGlinchey, the ninth overall pick in the draft, could make it easier to finally get Smith’s deal done. Like McGlinchey, Smith is represented by CAA. Like McGlinchey, Smith is…