According to Jason Cole of B/R, the San Francisco 49ers’ decision to bench QB Colin Kaepernick “is not a long-term plan,” and they’re instead hoping that sitting him for a week or two will allow him to “get his head straight” with the hope that he can help them turn things around.
A 49ers’ player tells Cole that Kaepernick needs to focus on is learning how to operate and run their offense at this point in time.
On top of that, the 49ers’ front office believes Kaepernick is still too talented to give up on right now. If they can turn Kaepernick around, the front office still believes he can be the star player he appeared to be a few years ago.
For the time being, Blaine Gabbert will be the team’s starter.
There has already been speculation that the 49ers could field trade offers for Kaepernick ahead of today’s deadline, but it would still be surprising to see them complete a trade in a matter of hours.
Kaepernick, 27, is in the second year of his seven-year, $126.97 million contract that included $61 million guaranteed and stands to make a base salary of $12.4 million for the 2015 season.
While those numbers are impressive on their own, the contract is essentially a pay-as-you-go agreement that includes ways for San Francisco to walk away with limited repercussions.
$14 million of Kaepernick’s deal will become guaranteed in April of next year, which gives San Francisco ample time to consider all of their available options. It’s worth mentioning that parting ways with Kaepernick would create $7 million in dead money for the 49ers.
In eight games this season, Kaepernick has thrown for 1,615 yards while completing 59.3 percent of his passes to go along with six touchdowns and five interceptions. He’s also added 228 yards rushing and a touchdown.