49ers OLB Aldon Smith agreed to restructure his contract on Thursday, even though San Francisco won’t pick up any cap relief from this move.
According to Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area, Smith’s new contract will pay him his $9.754 million salary through a series of roster bonuses.
Smith didn’t have to do this, but he’s hoping that it will be viewed as a gesture of good faith that could lead to a long-term extension with the 49ers.
“It wasn’t like they said, ‘If you don’t do this, you’re cut,’” said Smith agent, Doug Hendrickson.
“The thought behind it is that Aldon realizes he’s been his own worst enemy. He has come a long way since he was suspended. His ultimately his goal, my goal and the team’s goal is for him to sign a long-term contract with the Niners.”
“He’s basically saying, ‘I’m willing to bet on myself that I will not do anything stupid.‘”
The 49ers picked up Smith’s fifth-year option last year, which would have fully guaranteed his $9.754 million salary had he been on their roster as of the first day of next Tuesday.
Maiocco writes that Smith’s contract structure will allow him to earn his salary through incremental roster bonuses that will begin to be paid out in April.
Smith, 25, appeared in seven games and recorded 15 tackles and two sacks for the 49ers’ defense in 2014. He’ll be an unrestricted free agent next year, so he clearly has a lot to prove in 2015.