San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick has the ability to opt-out of his contract before the start of NFL free agency on March 9, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he will.
According to Matt Borrows of the Sacramento Bee, Kaepernick is open to returning to the 49ers for the 2017 season, and if he opts-in to the contract with San Francisco rather than opt-out, he will make $14.5 million as a base salary, with the chance to make up to to $19.3 million with incentives.
From Borrows’ report:
Kaepernick, according to those close to him, is open to returning to the 49ers in 2017. He started 11 games this past season and seemed to get better, and stronger, as he recovered from three operations as the season wore on.
Recently, Kaepernick decided to hire new representation after parting ways with XAM Sports, the agency that represented him since he hired them to get him drafted in 2011. Select Sports Group handled the restructuring of Kaepernick’s contract during the 2016 season, but Borrows notes that it isn’t clear as to who is Kaepernick’s new representation.
The restructure voided the final three years of a massive six-year, $114 million contract with $61 million guaranteed that Kaepernick agreed to in June 2014. Those three years (2018,2019,2020) could’ve paid Kaepernick up to over $65 million.
Spotrac is projecting that Kaepernick will land a similar contract in free agency from another team in free agency if he chooses to leave the 49ers at a one-year, $14 million mark. Which is fair, considering all Kaepernick did to come back this season with several distracts around him.
If Kaepernick opts out, the 49ers will have no quarterback signed for the 2017 season entering free agency and the 2017 NFL Draft. Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder will also become free agents this March.
Kaepernick threw for 2,241 yards in 2016, while also rushing for 468. This landed Kaepernick 18 total touchdowns on the year, while he also had a passer rating of 90.7, his highest mark since 2013.
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