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The 49ers tight end salary cap questions are kind of all over the place

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We're running down the salary cap figures, and notable contract details for each position group. Today, we look at tight ends.

The 49ers are working their way through OTAs, and as we continue prepping for the upcoming season, it seemed a good time for another swing through the positions. This time around, we are looking at the salary cap figures for the players competing in each position group. The 49ers have a ton of cap space, so it should not play a huge role in deciding roster spots, but it is always interesting to consider.

We are started off with quarterbacks, running backs, and wide receivers. Today, we move on to the tight ends. We've got a list of the pertinent numbers for each player, and anything key points associated with the given contract. The 49ers have a full depth chart of players, but it remains to be seen how the group will shuffle out when Week 1 arrives.

Garrett Celek

Year

Cap Hit

Base

SB

Per Game RB

WO Bonus

2016

$1,915,625

$1,000,000

$625,000

$240,625

$50,000

2017

$2,575,000

$1,550,000

$625,000

$350,000

$50,000

2018

$2,675,000

$1,650,000

$625,000

$350,000

$50,000

2019

$2,925,000

$1,900,000

$625,000

$350,000

$50,000

Celek really came on towards the middle of the season last year when Blaine Gabbert took over at quarterback. An ankle injury cost him the final five games of the season, but he signed a 4-year contract extension in the offseason. I fully expect Celek to get a significant amount of playing time in 2016

Celek’s 2016 base salary was guaranteed at signing, while the rest of his base salaries from 2017-2019 are not guaranteed, either at signing or for injury.

Bruce Miller

Year

Cap Hit

Base

SB

Per Game RB

WO Bonus

2016

$1,896,500

$1,250,000

$446,500

$180,000

$40,000

2017

$2,096,500

$1,450,000

$446,500

$180,000

$40,000

Miller was the 49ers starting fullback the last five years, but he is now transitioning over to tight end. From what we’ve heard, Miller is doing a good job, and seems to have the natural athleticism to make the switch.

I fully expect Miller to be a 49er in 2016, as he is one of their top 53 players. None of his 2016 and 2017 base salary is guaranteed.

Vance McDonald

Year

Cap Hit

Base

SB

WO Bonus

2016

$1,145,193

$795,797

249396

$100,000

This is really a make or break season for the former 2nd-round pick out of Rice. McDonald needs to step up in order to not just assure him of being back in 2017, but assure his roster spot in 2016.

Blake Bell

Year

Cap Hit

Base

SB

2016

$651,283

$525,000

$126,283

2017

$741,283

$615,000

$126,283

2018

$831,283

$705,000

$126,283

Bell, the former quarterback, now a tight end, nicknamed the Belldozer, looks like a clear favorite to win a spot on the 53 man roster. He'll get work as a special teams contributor and continue to build on his rookie season. He converted to tight end his senior year of college, so there remains a development curve.

Bell is eligible for the PPE, better known as the Proven Performance Escalator, and the requirements are listed at the end of this article.

Je’Ron Hamm

Year

Cap Hit

Base

2016

$525,000

$525,000

Hamm has the longest odds of making the 2016 roster, and he doesn’t carry any dead money, unlike the other tight ends.

Busta Anderson

Year

Cap Hit

Base

SB

2016

$463,196

$450,000

$13,196

2017

$628,196

$615,000

$13,196

2018

$718,196

$705,000

$13,196

Anderson spent the entire season on injured reserve in 2015, and he does have several players ahead of him. But I feel like Anderson is one of those players that no one thinks will make the team, and then impresses, and makes the roster.

Here is how the proven performance escalator (PPE) works, according to the CBA:The CBA states that an eligible player will qualify for the PPE in his fourth League year if: (1) he participated in a minimum of 35% of his Club's offensive or defensive plays in any two of his previous three regular seasons; or (2) he participated in a "cumulative average" of at least 35% of his Club's offensive or defensive plays over his previous three regular seasons. "Cumulative average" means the sum of the total number of offensive or defensive plays in which the player participated over the applicable seasons, divided by the sum of the Club's offensive or defensive plays during the same seasons. (By way of example, if a player participates in 600 of the Club's 1,000 offensive plays in his first season, 290 of the Club's 1,000 plays in his second season, and 310 of the Club's 1,000 plays in his third season for a total of 1,200 plays out of a possible 3,000, the cumulative average would equal 40%). As far as the salary is concerned, the PPE shall equal the difference between (i) the amount of the Restricted Free Agent Qualifying Offer for a Right of First Refusal Only as set forth in, or as calculated in accordance with, Article 9 for the League Year in such player's fourth season and (ii) the player's year-four Rookie Salary (excluding signing bonus and amounts treated as signing bonus). The resulting amount shall be added to the stated amount of the player's year-four Paragraph 5 Salary. Lastly If you have any questions, please leave them below, and I will do my best to get to them all.

As always you can follow me on Twitter, @Jay_AB81, or check our salary cap section here, on Niners Nation, which is now officially the exclusive home for my salary cap information.