(Yahoo!) After a couple days at the NFL scouting combine of positive words from the San Francisco 49ers regarding quarterback Colin Kaepernick, Kaepernick did a WWE heel turn.
Get out the steel chair, because Kaepernick has apparently requested the 49ers trade him. The NFL Network reported that news.
It makes some sense that Kaepernick doesn't have the warm and fuzzies for the 49ers right now. He was benched last season. The team around him was terrible. There were reports that the 49ers had given up on him and would release him, although that was premature. It's fair for Kaepernick to not be thrilled about being a 49er.
But it also doesn't make sense for him to hit the eject button now.
The 49ers have a new offense, with coach Chip Kelly in charge. Kaepernick is logically a good fit in an offense that can use a mobile quarterback and doesn't ask him to do too much from the pocket. Kaepernick did not play well last season, and he earned his benching. But a new system could change that because it presumably can play to his strengths, and the 49ers spent a week basically laying the groundwork for Kaepernick to get a fresh start.
There's also the business side of it. The 49ers don't have to trade Kaepernick. He's under contract. And if he wants to hold out and not make his $11.9 million salary, good luck. Quality quarterbacks aren't easy to find in the NFL and the 49ers might not want to dump him just yet. Also, the 49ers might not easily find a trade partner for a quarterback who is scheduled to make such a large base salary and was benched for Blaine Gabbert last season. Kaepernick has also built up some goodwill with the 49ers fans and the organization for playing very well in 2012 and 2013, which he wouldn't have elsewhere. He'd be starting completely over with a new team. Maybe that's a good thing, because a change of scenery can help, but it also might not be the magic answer either.
From many angles, it seems like the best place for Kaepernick to get his career back on that stardom track would still be with the 49ers. At very least he can pocket about $12 million this season while he figures out if Kelly's offense is good for him.
“Kap’s really good,” Kelly said, according to CSN Bay Area. “He had the ball on the 5 yard line, taking the team in to win the Super Bowl. You can just look at the tape and know how talented he is. Our job is acquiring talent, not getting rid of talent.”
Kelly also said that Kaepernick seemed excited to be with the 49ers, which was either a lie or a total misread of the situation.
We know Kaepernick is capable of being a very good NFL quarterback. We've seen him do it before. Now he apparently thinks his best chance to get back to that level is somewhere other than San Francisco. We'll see how the 49ers feel about that.
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