The hiring of Chip Kelly as the San Francisco 49ers’ new head coach might not be enough to keep quarterback Colin Kaepernick from being traded away this offseason.
According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, the 49ers are still “very likely” to deal their 28-year-old quarterback before the start of the 2016 season. La Canfora notes that Kaepernick has “done nothing” to connect with Kelly, who many believed would be a good match for the duel threat quarterback. He also cites “major trust issues” remaining between the two sides.
The New York Daily News reported on Tuesday that Kaepernick still wants out of San Francisco, and he prefers the New York Jets as his top trade destination.
The 49ers still have ample time to make a decision. Kaepernick’s base salary in 2016 doesn’t become guaranteed until April 1st, leaving the next two months for San Francisco to float trade ideas with other teams.
Kaepernick suffered through serious regression in 2015, when he threw for 1,615 yards, six touchdowns and five interceptions over nine games. The 49ers explored trade options at last season’s deadline, but no deal developed. Kaepernick was eventually placed on season-ending injured reserve with a shoulder issue, and he later needed surgery on both his shoulder and throwing thumb.
Kelly has major decisions to make at quarterback. It seems less and less likely Kaepernick will be one of his options for his first season in San Francisco.