Report: 'virtually certain' Colin Kaepernick won't be returning to San Francisco 49ers next season
It's sounding increasingly unlikely that Colin Kaepernick will still be a San Francisco 49er next season.
Less than a week after the 49ers benched Kaepernick for Blaine Gabbert, a report says it is "virtually certain" Kaepernick will be cut following the season.
Jason La Canfora of CBS reported on Sunday that trust between the organization and Kaepernick has eroded to the point that anything short of Gabbert getting injured and Kaepernick leading the 49ers to a playoff birth will result in Kaepernick's dismissal at season's end. Considering the improbability of said scenario, it's only a matter of time until Kaepernick is elsewhere in the NFL.
Explains La Canfora:
The benching of 49ersquarterback Colin Kaepernickthis week has only heightened the frayed relationship between him and the upper management of the team and created a climate in which it is virtually certain he is not back in San Francisco in 2016, according to team and league sources ... Kaepernick has not asked for a trade, though the 49ers were among the clubs who were open to dealing pretty much anyone on their roster before Tuesday's deadline, including their quarterback, according to league sources. His benching this week, for Blaine Gabbert, has further polarized the locker room, sources said, and several of Kaepernick's teammates believe he would ask for a trade or his release rather than stay with the 49ers next year.
Between Kaepernick's mediocre play, his divisiveness in the locker room, and his ballooning contract — Kaepernick will lose $100 million if he is cut after the season — the 49ers have no choice but to cut him before April 1st, when his $7 million cap hit for 2016 sets in. Still, the organization won't get rid of him for nothing: the quarterback is due $12.8 million this season as part of the $126 million contract extension he signed last year.