Sims to sign with 49ers

OWINGS MILLS -- Veteran free agent offensive tackle Barry Sims opted to sign with the San Francisco 49ers, agreeing to terms on a two-year, incentive-laden contract after recently visiting the Baltimore Ravens' training complex. Ultimately, the former Oakland Raiders nine-year starter chose the 49ers over the St. Louis Rams' competing offer.

"The decision was not made until this morning, and San Francisco was definitely not a foregone conclusion," said Ken Vierra, Sims' agent, in an e-mail Monday afternoon. "It came down to his belief that San Francisco offered the best chance to compete for a starting job/significant playing time and the money was better, potentially a lot better if he hits some playing-time incentives."

The 49ers were the most aggressive in their pursuit of the 33-year-old Sims, offering a richer financial package and a chance to compete for a starting job at right tackle with Jonas Jennings.

Baltimore was one of the three finalists after Sims eliminated the New England Patriots, but the Ravens are planning to enter training camp in Westminster next month with Jared Gaither and Adam Terry atop the depth chart at left tackle and right tackle.

Plus, signing with the 49ers allows Sims to remain in the Bay Area where he already has a home.

Sims was cut by Oakland on Feb. 26 after starting 119 out of 136 games. He was originally due a $4.5 million base salary for this season.

Aaron Wilson covers the Baltimore Ravens for the Carroll County Times and the Annapolis Capital.

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