LISTEN: The 49ers' Secret Weapon On Defense →
placeholder image

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


49ers insider believes team may prefer WR Brandon Aiyuk play on fifth-year option

Marc Adams
Apr 6, 2024 at 8:39 AM


Videos are auto-populated by an affiliate. This site has no control over the videos that appear above.
The San Francisco 49ers don't always do things like other NFL teams do. But they are consistent, for the most part. Seemingly every offseason, especially in recent years, a star player has wanted a new contract. From TE George Kittle and LB Fred Warner to WR Deebo Samuel and Edge Nick Bosa, the 49ers have given new contracts, but they have waited until late July-early August (and in Bosa's case—September) to do so, much to the chagrin of those players, who wanted their new deal sooner rather than later.

It may not have happened as soon as the players wanted it to, but it has happened. Kittle's contract talks reportedly weren't as smooth as he might have hoped, Samuel famously scrubbed his social media accounts of all things 49ers, and Bosa didn't sign until a few days before the start of the regular season. But each one signed.

And now wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk is the one waiting. I've been among those assuring people it will be wrapped up around the start of training camp. Not because I have any kind of inside knowledge, but only because of the precedent the team has already set. This is how they normally do contract extensions with their biggest stars.

But this past week, one 49ers insider suggested the 49ers may break away from what they normally do, and allow Aiyuk to play on his fifth-year option so they can decide later what they want to do. Although I still believe that the 49ers won't trade Aiyuk and that they'll extend him before the pre-season begins, I'm beginning to wonder if the precedent could be broken this offseason. Could the 49ers do something different with Aiyuk than they've done with the others? After all, they did trade DeForest Bucker.

On Thursday, 49ers insider, Michael Silver, of the San Francisco Chronicle, was a guest with Rob "Stats" Guerrera on "The Gold Standard Podcast Network" and said something interesting about the Aiyuk contract situation. While most in the media believe Aiyuk and the team will agree on a contract extension, Silver isn't as sure. "If he's gonna be a pain in the butt, to the level Deebo was, and you just don't want to deal with that...maybe as the draft approaches, and as you're in real-time in the draft, and looking at who's on the board, you're listening and you're poking around," Silver said. "So I think all things could happen.

"I think they could get him to play on the fifth-year option. I think they could sweeten the fifth year, and kick the can. I think they could trade him even in real-time during the draft, or I think they could pay him, knowing that probably means Deebo, Kittle, or both are gone after next year, and you worry about it next year. So I'm keeping an eye on the whole thing. It's a fascinating, internal debate, and I know they think about it that way all the time."

One of the reasons we note things Silver says is that he has a track record, especially in recent weeks, of being right when it comes to how the 49ers are thinking or planning to move. And if Silver is suggesting the 49ers may prefer to let Aiyuk play on the fifth-year option and deal with the contract down the road, then we need to pay attention to that. Especially when Silver is not the only one suggesting this.

Mike Florio, of Pro Football Talk, suggested last week that the 49ers may prefer to wait until next offseason to give Aiyuk a new contract. "I think the Vikings, as much as they want to pay Justin Jefferson, I think the 49ers want to wait a year and then pay Brandon Aiyuk," Florio stated. "But they don't want to do it now. They may have to go ahead and do it now because he's clearly not thrilled with the current state of affairs."

Of course, this is just Florio's opinion, and fans of the team may normally ignore what he says, but when Silver is saying the same thing, it suggests the 49ers are at least considering this. The danger is that Aiyuk is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent after the 2024 season. If the 49ers don't extend Aiyuk this offseason, and allow him to reach free agency in 2025, they could end up losing him.

You can watch the full interview with Silver below.

?si=grFlWOCrJ-jn4uVx
Enjoy this article? Follow us to never miss more!

Powered by Follow.it


Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News


placeholder image

Why 49ers WR Brandon Aiyuk playing on 5th-year option intrigues Jeremy Fowler

By David Bonilla
Jun 10

Brandon Aiyuk probably wants to avoid playing on his fifth-year option. Although it would earn him $14.124 million in 2024, it is far below his market value. Similarly, the San Francisco 49ers likely want to avoid approaching the $30 million annual salary that might end the wide receiver's holdout. Last week, Michael Silver of the San Francisco Chronicle reported what was likely the 49ers' latest offer to Aiyuk, stating, "I'm hearing maybe their offer's in the $26 million range, which, you know, it's certainly not Justin Jefferson money, nor should it be, but it's closer to that DeVonta Smith, Amon-Ra St. Brown, that next tier down." Suppose the two sides can't reach a mutually


placeholder image

Insider shares what 49ers have likely offered Brandon Aiyuk

By David Bonilla
Jun 6

The San Francisco 49ers are eager to sign Brandon Aiyuk to a long-term deal, believing he can continue to be a number-one receiver and a focal point in an offense filled with playmakers. However, the negotiations aren't progressing as smoothly as both sides had hoped. Aiyuk didn't report to the 49ers' mandatory minicamp this week, subjecting himself to possible fines. The receiver is looking at the big picture, knowing that his absence sends a message and could make him money in the long run. About $100,000 in potential fines is a drop in the bucket when he is looking to become one of the highest-paid receivers in the NFL. The Minnesota Vikings recently signed Justin Jefferson to a market-resetting contract averaging $35 million annually. Three other receivers


placeholder image

Are the 49ers preparing for life after Brandon Aiyuk or Deebo Samuel? Louis Riddick believes so

By Marc Adams
Jun 8

Go back to the weeks leading up to the 2024 NFL Draft and you'll find rumors swirling about the possibility that the San Francisco 49ers could be trading one of their star wide receivers, Brandon Aiyulk or Deebo Samuel. Many believed that if a trade was made, it would happen before or during the draft. But the draft came and went, and neither player was moved. But here we are in June, and the rumors haven't died down—much. Aiyuk, after skipping OTAs (Organized Team Activities) and the mandatory minicamp due to a contract dispute, is reportedly "pessimistic" that a deal will get done. And of course, there are still rumblings from Pittsburgh Steelers reporter, Ray


placeholder image

Maiocco less confident 49ers will get a deal done with Brandon Aiyuk

By David Bonilla
Jun 11

The San Francisco 49ers have had success signing their big-name players to contract extensions in recent years, securing deals with George Kittle, Fred Warner, Deebo Samuel, and Nick Bosa. However, that last one didn't get finalized until dangerously close to the start of the regular season. This year, the team has been trying to get a deal done with wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk. While the 49ers were confident early on, given their successful track record, that a deal would be reached, the two sides reportedly remain far apart in negotiations. Last week, Michael Silver of the San Francisco


Latest

Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone