Well, I can't imagine Tarell Brown planned on this happening. Over at Yahoo!'s Shutdown Corner, Brian McIntyre is reporting that 49ers cornerback Tarell Brown has voided a $2 million salary escalator because of his decision to stay home for much of the 49ers offseason workout program.
Earlier this offseason, we learned that Brown's 2012 performance had triggered an escalator that increased his base salary from $925,000 to $2,925,000. However, apparently that escalator required appearances at the 49ers offseason workout program. Brown had said he stayed home to focus on some specific work to get him ready for this coming season. He is heading into free agency after the season, so it makes sense to want to do exactly what he needs to in order to get ready for the coming season. He did attend the team's minicamp.
The $2 million decline is reflected in NFLPA records, so it would seem that Brown is aware of this. All indications are that he is at camp, and not holding out. While he can't be pleased with this situation, fault would have to lie with either Brown or his agent. Either Brown knew and decided he was willing to sacrifice the money, or his agent did not do his due diligence when it comes to the salary ramifications of staying home much of the offseason.
Whatever the case, this will be something to track in the coming days. There is player availability later today, and I imagine that if Brown is around, he might get a question or two about the salary decrease.
More importantly for the 49ers, it gives them even more cap space than they previously had. Per the public NFLPA cap space report, the 49ers now have $7,436,766 in cap space heading into the 2013 season. They have several options with that space, whether it be extending one of their current players, or rolling it over into the 2014 season.
Brown is a free agent after this season, and the 49ers have usually been fairly proactive in getting players signed. It is possible the two sides are working on a contract, but it is also possible the 49ers are prepared to move on from Brown after this season. While I would argue he has been there best cornerback lately, the team cannot re-sign everybody on the roster. There will be sacrifices, and Brown could be one such player when the season comes to a close.