San Francisco 49ers fans knew this time was coming.
Thanks to the way rookie contracts are structured in the NFL these days, the Niners have been getting a bargain on Colin Kaepernick over the past couple of years. Even if Kaep had been drafted in the first round back in 2011, he wouldn’t have made close to what he could have seven or eight years ago. But the way it stands right now, the speedy QB is making an average salary of ‘just’ $1.2 million per season.
Obviously, Kaepernick is due a big raise once his contract comes up for renewal at the end of 2014. But just how much money will he be looking for? According to football personality Pete Prisco, he’ll be looking for $18 million per season.
As crazy as that number sounds, it’s about right for franchise QBs these days. If you’ll remember, Joe Flacco signed a new contract worth over $20 million per season after he won Super Bowl 47. But the key phrase there is ‘after he won’ the Super Bowl. That’s something Kaep has yet to do. On top of that, he hasn’t exactly proven himself as elite.
Is the speedy QB with a cannon for an arm worth a truckload of money? You bet. I think most football fans can agree that Kaep is for real (although to me he’s quite a wildcard at times and still has plenty of maturing at the quarterback position to do), but the kind of money he’s allegedly seeking, just isn’t realistic.
Now if he goes out and wins the Super Bowl next season, then by all means he’s worth $18 million. Until then, I’d say he’s at minimum a double-digit millions guy.
It should be noted that one of the main reasons the 49ers are such a solid all around team is because they DON’T have to spend franchise money on their quarterback. The NFL is a salary cap league, and if you pay Kaepernick more then you’re going to have to pay less somewhere else. You won’t be able to keep all of those all-pro defensive players. This, coupled with the John Harbaugh trade rumors, only cements the fact that the window is closing rather quickly for a young Kaepernick to win a Super Bowl.