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Will the 49ers exercise Aldon Smith's option?

The 49ers have until May 3 to decide whether to exercise Aldon Smith's fifth year option. It's time for predictions!

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Tuesday afternoon, Aldon Smith's attorney(s) and the Santa Clara district attorney's representative convened at the Santa Clara County Superior Court for a status conference. All indications are that nothing of significance came from the hearing, with the next hearing scheduled for May 12.

The San Francisco 49ers have until this Saturday, May 3, to pick up Aldon Smith's 5th year option. I believe the time would be 1 p.m. PT, but I'm not positive on that. As part of the 2011 first round class, Smith signed a 4-year deal that included a team option for 2015. If exercised, the option will pay $9,754,000. If exercised, it is immediately guaranteed for football injury. It becomes fully guaranteed on the first day of the 2015 league year (mid-March).

These two paragraphs go hand-in-hand because the 49ers have to figure out if they are going to exercise the option. A lot of media have reported they are leaning against it, with some going as far as saying it is unlikely they will exercise the option. I happen to disagree with that notion, but I also am not positive they exercise the option. I'd say they are likely to exercise it, but it's hard to tell what kind of information they have at their disposal in making that determination. For example, the team might be in touch with the league about a potential suspension, or might be considering other options, such as a season on the NFI list while Aldon gets help (just one of several options). If he plays fewer than six games in 2014, he would not accrue a year toward free agency. This would make him a restricted free agent in 2015, as opposed to unrestricted. There's no word that they are planning anything like this, but it's one option to consider.

If I had to make a prediction, I would say the team does exercise the fifth year option. I've included a poll below just to see how many people agree or disagree. This is about what you think the 49ers WILL do, not what you think they SHOULD do.