Running back LaMichael James cleared waivers unclaimed on Tuesday, a day after the 49ers granted his request to waive him, according to a source.
James is now free to sign with any team with whatever contract he can negotiate. Any team that claimed him would have picked up the final two years of the original contract he signed with the 49ers as a second-round draft pick in 2012.
He was due to make $641,718 this season and $792,577 in 2015.
The 49ers granted James’ request and waived him Monday morning. They filled the roster spot with the re-signing of wide receiver/special-teamer Kassim Osgood.
He will count more than $213,000 on the 49ers’ salary cap the next two seasons – the prorated amount of his original $853,744 signing bonus.
James has been disgruntled about his lack of playing time. He appeared in 15 regular-season games in his 49ers career while being declared inactive 18 times in his first two seasons.
The 24-year old gained 184 yards on 41 rushing attempts. On Sunday, rookie Bruce Ellington replaced James as the team’s primary return man, too.
[MAIOCCO: Two rookies made James expendable with 49ers]
James came to the 49ers after a storied career at Oregon. He finished third in the Heisman Trophy balloting in 2010 and was 10th in the voting during an injury-plagued 2011 season.
In three seasons at Oregon, James rushed for 5,082 yards and 53 touchdowns. In 2010, he rushed for 257 yards and three touchdowns in a victory over Jim Harbaugh’s Stanford team.