Thursday evening, reports came out that Colin Kaepernick's agents were seeking permission from the San Francisco 49ers to pursue a trade. This came after Trent Baalke said he expected Kaepernick on the roster April 1, and Chip Kelly talked about Kap seemingly wanting to stick around. It was a busy day indeed.
A day later, it appears the 49ers are beginning a little bit of damage control. Bleacher Report NFL reporter Jason Cole posted a video in which he talked about the 49ers debating the issue of trading Kaepernick. Cole said the team thinks his contract remains affordable, and they think he can still be a star player if coached correctly.
It is entirely possible they fully believe this. However, given the timing of this report, it comes across more as damage control following Thursday's news. Kaepernick requesting a chance to pursue a trade decreases the team's leverage in potential trade negotiations. Other teams will say, we know he wants out, so why should we give up X, Y, or Z? They can wait for an eventual release and not give up anything.
Of course, if the 49ers give Kap's agents permission to pursue a trade, they could also work out something in regards to cutting down his contract, and coming up with something feasible for all parties involved. At this point, you can't exactly undo the trade request reports, so it would seem like the best bet is to figure out a workable solution with another team, and move on.
Here's what Cole had to say, followed by the video.
The 49ers are debating that and deciding whether they can find him a new home for the 2016 season. However, part of the debate for the 49ers is, No. 1, they like the fact that he only makes $11.9 million for the 2016 season. Despite the fact that he struggled the last two seasons, they think that's a very affordable contract for somebody of his potential. And further more, that potential. The 49ers still believe that Kaepernick can be a star player, if harnessed and in the right environment, if he's coached correctly. And they believe that Chip Kelly and his system are the proper one to work with Colin Kaepernick and produce those kind of results that his talent will allow. So the 49ers are sitting here debating whether to allow Kaepernick to pursue a trade. Much of this is based on whether Kaepernick trusts the team or not at this time, but the 49ers really like Kaepernick and a lot of things about him.