The San Francisco 49ers find themselves a little bit busy today. After cutting the ribbon to officially open Levi's Stadium, and then placing eight players on the NFI and PUP lists, the 49ers announced they have signed left tackle Joe Staley to a 2-year extension. The deal will keep him in San Francisco through 2019. He turns 35 prior to that season, which means he very well could finish up his career with the 49ers.
There are no contract details, but with a couple extra years added on, the 49ers could give him a nice little signing bonus to pro-rate over the life of the deal. Conceivably it could get Staley a raise while creating some cap space now. Staley is generally considered one of the better bargains among NFL offensive linemen, in part because he signed a big extension early before he really had fully established himself. We saw that he was going in the right direction, but it has been during the life of this extension that he has really come into his own.
There was some talk back in March that the 49ers might consider re-doing his contract. He was due to make $2.7 million in 2014, $4.5 million in 2015, $5.4 million in 2016, and $6.25 million in 2017. It will be interesting to see what kind of up-front money he gets, and how it shakes out the salary cap space over the life of the deal.
What is of course even more interesting is that he got an extension while Alex Boone and Vernon Davis have made it clear they also want new deals. While Boone and Davis have been very clear in their displeasure, Staley has seemingly been a "good soldier" this offseason. Who knows what has happened behind closed doors, but there was never any real indication of displeasure.
This could be a sign to Boone and Davis that if you show up, good things can happen. This would not be a surprising revelation. We could sort of figure this out back in 2011 when Frank Gore held out for a few days, returned, and had a contract extension by the end of the month. We'll see if this changes anything with Alex Boone or Vernon Davis.