It looks like Colin Kaepernick's future has finally been decided, for the time being.
The quarterback wasn't traded before the deadline yesterday (March 31), meaning his $11.9 million base salary for 2016 with the San Francisco 49ers has become fully guaranteed, keeping him with the franchise at least for now.
The reason why yesterday was the deadline for the 49ers and not today (April 1) is because yesterday marked the deadline for transactions to be submitted before the first day of his new contract.
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We should have expected this despite the amount of trade rumors flying around, linking him with the Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns, and the New York Jets, because according to NFL.com: "Ian Rapoport has repeatedly reported over the past several weeks that the 49ers had no plans to cut Kaepernick before the deadline."
For the foreseeable future, Kaepernick will remain a 49ers player, and he will be competing alongside Blaine Gabbert for the starting quarterback job in 2016. However, that still doesn't mean the trade rumors are going to be stopping anytime soon.
With the Jets stating their disinterest with the 28-year-old, and the Browns having signed Robert Griffin III off free agency, the Broncos still remain as the front runners for the quarterback's services if any trade at all takes place.
Of course, at the end of the day, if the 49ers want to keep him and the Broncos are still interested in him, there's only one person that can decide the future of Kaepernick and that is the quarterback himself. With his vocality of wanting to leave the team, it seems still possible that he could be playing for another franchise in 2016.
According to Pro Football Talk: "The Broncos would want Kaepernick to reduce his compensation package to facilitate a trade. Failing that, Denver would look for the 49ers to pay some of the salary."
With Denver only sitting on Mark Sanchez as their only quarterback with experience, it seems likely that they will find a way to bring someone else in, either through the draft or via a trade. Kaepernick could be that guy. He would be an upgrade, but he is no Peyton Manning.
However, he's still recuperating from surgeries on his left shoulder, right thumb and left knee, so there will be serious issues about if he will be able to rediscover the consistency he had during the 49ers' Super Bowl run back in the 2012 season anytime soon.
This, alongside Kaepernick's new contract, might lure off the Broncos from chasing the quarterback for much longer.
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