Here we are in the middle of the only story of the NFL offseason that has any staying power. Colin Kaepernick’s whereabouts come September. Funny to think there are people out there who think Trent Baalke will dump Kaepernick. Even though he’s under contract and (presumably) will be on the team after his salary kicks in on April 1st. Regardless of what anyone thinks of him, his salary and contract are team-friendly, no matter what team he is on.
And, believe it or not, the 49ers do have some leverage regarding their wayward QB. And the leverage lies with Denver. This makes the most sense for everyone involved. Cleveland wants to heavily restructure his contract to pay him nearly backup money. While Kappy would likely be fine with that kind of deal in Denver, Cleveland is another mater entirely,as they are shedding talent, their coaching staff is a revolving door of revolting, and are basically a different flavor of shit than we are right now. And therein lies the rub. Trent Baalke KNOWS that Denver, and Elway, do NOT want to start the season with Mark Sanchez as their starting QB. This is where we have our leverage.
Trent has made all the statements that we are going to stick with Kappy should the trade not come to pass. Even Kappy has said he’d come to camp should it fall out this way (his best interest as well). Trent is also holding out for a 2nd round pick. Cleve’s 3rd round basically IS Denver’s 2nd round, so Trent understands that Denver’s 3rd is way down the line. To make things interesting, Denver floated out there that Kappy is only worth a 4th round pick. Funnily enough Denver doesn’t HAVE a 4th round pick to trade. So, they are playing their own brand of gamesmanship.
We’ll see how this plays out, but for all of Baalke’s shitty drafts, he has ben very shrewd at GETTING draft picks. We went through a similar scenario with Young Sir Alex when many though he would be simply cast aside. I rightly said that there was enough interest to get a some picks. I didn’t think he’d get a 2 and a 3 for him (I think I said a 3 and 4). As it worked out, Baalke got the following for Alex:
Tank Carradine, DE (second round, 2013)
Corey Lemonier, LB (third round, 2013)
Carlos Hyde, RB (second round, 2014)
Chris Borland, LB (third round, 2014)
Stevie Johnson, WR (trade for 2015 fourth-round pick)
Not a bad haul for a guy that many thought would be tossed away. I don’t think we get the same 2 picks, but I can see something like Denver’s 3rd round pick, and a mid-level pick next year.