Source: 49ers haven’t made decision on Aldon Smith’s option

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On Sunday, we reported that the 49ers haven’t decided whether to pick up the 2015 option on linebacker Aldon Smith’s contract.  Since then, more pessimistic accounts have emerged.

Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News reported that it’s “very unlikely” the option will be exercised.  Earlier on Friday, Adam Schefter of ESPN explained that the 49ers are “not expected” to extend the contract from a four-year deal to a five-year deal.

Per a league source with knowledge of the team’s thinking, however, the 49ers still haven’t made a decision.  And they don’t have to make a decision until May 3, the deadline for picking up the option.

The option-year salary of $9.75 million for Smith would be guaranteed for injury only until the first day of the 2015 league year.  At that point, it would become fully guaranteed for 2015.

Until then, the 49ers would owe Smith the money only if he suffers an injury that would render him unable to play not only this year but next year.  And if they decide to trade him at some point, the 49ers would be able to send to Smith’s new team a contract that covers more than one year.

Other than avoiding the small risk of a two-year injury, the only potential benefit of not exercising the option would be motivational.  The Lions, for instance, aren’t using it for defensive tackle Nick Fairley, in order to prompt him to play hard as he chases a long-term deal.  For Smith, who has 42 sacks in 43 career regular-season games, it’s not about on-field motivation; it’s about staying out of trouble.  The opportunity to earn $9.75 million in 2015 should provide all the motivation he needs in that regard.

Regardless, no decision has been made.  Yet.  The 49ers have roughly two weeks to deliberate.

31 responses to “Source: 49ers haven’t made decision on Aldon Smith’s option

  1. What do you expect? A classless organization like the 9ers would have to ponder whether they should keep a person who habitually commits crimes against humanity.

    Trent and Jim are tweedle-dee and tweedle-dumb.


  2. Seattle will be better in ’14 than they were in 13. Not saying they will win more regular season games, it’s hard to repeat 13 wins, but they will be top to bottom a better team.

    The 49ers on the other hand look like a team that’s losing it’s way.

    A coach in conflict with the front office.

    A QB who can’t stay out of the offseason headlines, and whom wants a contract he hasn’t earned.

    Bowman will be out for a big chunk of the year.

    Rampant constant turnover in the secondary; losting Whitner will hurt as will cycling CB’s who weren’t great to begin with.

    Aldon smith shouldn’t and probably won’t play much of the season.

    Aging players that were critical to the past few successful seasons.

    All in all it’s looking like the ‘niners missed their window of opportunity to me.

  3. If the Niners pick up Smith’s option, can he then be optioned to the Calgary Roughriders so he can learn to appreciate what he has in the NFL, while freezing his butt off?

  4. There was a pretty big earthquake in Mexico today.

    Maybe Tim Kawakami can go down there and report it as a Tornado or Hurricane…

  5. Honestly, I would rather face the green bay defense with all 11 starters (scrubs) than face Aldon 1 on 11. He is that good and green bay’s defense is really that bad…….

  6. I know what to do…FIRED HIM NOW! He’s not worth the trouble he is always causing. He can’t handle prosperity. He’s a big baby with money. I hope he’s sent to jail.

  7. Must be tough to be a santa Clara 49ers fan. (Never won a superbowl, plus this off season has been rough) San Francisco is saying good riddance.

  8. If he’s not suspended by the NFL for at least 4 games then “Goodell’s new sheriff” image is even more of a farce than it looked like when he was pushing the whole fake bounty fiasco.

  9. Other than avoiding the small risk of a two-year injury,

    Small risk? This guy’s an accident, gunshot, drug haze from a serious injury.

  10. Tim Kawakami has no credibility and is the biggest hack in the media. Seattle on the other hand is the biggest group of bandwagon “fans” in the history of pro sport.


  11. niner13 says: Apr 18, 2014 2:45 PM

    If the Niners pick up Smith’s option, can he then be optioned to the Calgary Roughriders so he can learn to appreciate what he has in the NFL, while freezing his butt off?


    You mean the Calgary Stampeders or the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

  12. 49er fans just be glad you dont gotta get your brand spanking new jersey dirty, remember since you’re new and all its the 49ers you’re cheering for

  13. Can someone please define what a dynasty is for me. And is there a expiration date on having to turn in your dynasty card. If you haven’t won a Super Bowl in twenty years can you mention yourself in the same breath with the steelers and patriots.
    Yes, I am a Seahawks fan. No, I am no bandwagon fan. Nor are most Seahawks fans. We are just given a platform to be heard.
    That comment had nothing to do with the Seahawks, and more if a shot at the so called dynasties is 49ers and cowboys. Really?

  14. Don’t pick it up, and let the NFL front office do their thing and suspend him without pay for at least half of the year. I think the 49ers should move on and use Corey Lemonier as he’s got the potential to be a very good pass rusher.

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