SANTA CLARA (AP) — Trent Baalke is not ruling out the possibility of still striking a trade for Colin Kaepernick, though San Francisco’s general manager is adamant he still hopes to see the quarterback working in new 49ers coach Chip Kelly’s system.
While Baalke has been in touch with Kaepernick, he said Wednesday they haven’t spoken in person despite both being at team headquarters. Kaepernick is around rehabilitating from three surgeries and attending team meetings during the voluntary portion of the offseason program.
Kaepernick was granted permission to meet with the Denver Broncos after his agents requested a trade during the offseason.
“I think you have to know all the circumstances that go into it, and I’m not going to get into all the hypotheticals or the circumstances surrounding it,” Baalke said at Levi’s Stadium. “I’ve maintained from Day 1, as has the head coach, would love to get him out there and work within this system with this coaching staff. That’s not changed. I said that in February and here we are today still saying the same things.”
Kaepernick met with Broncos GM John Elway late last month at his Denver home, and it seems like the Super Bowl champions could be a potential fit for Kaepernick. Still, he is due $11.9 million guaranteed this season and might not want to restructure his deal for any less.
Whether Kaepernick wants out of San Francisco, Baalke said he wasn’t sure. Kaepernick hasn’t been available to the media despite multiple requests.
“I can’t get into what his feelings are. I’ve not addressed them directly with Colin,” Baalke said. “That’s just not something that we’ve done at this point.”
Kaepernick is recovering from surgeries on his right thumb, his left knee, and on his non-throwing left shoulder to repair a torn labrum, which landed him on season-ending injured reserve after he lost his job last fall to 2011 first-round draft pick Blaine Gabbert.
Gabbert took over in November for the benched Kaepernick, who completed just 59 percent of his passes with six touchdowns, five interceptions and a 78.5 rating before losing his job. Gabbert said when the team’s 5-11 season ended that he expects to be the starter in 2016.
Kaepernick went 2-6 in eight starts last season, raising questions about whether the quarterback who guided the 49ers to a runner-up Super Bowl finish following the 2012 season was still the best option under center.
Baalke and Kelly are eager to see — if Kaepernick does indeed stick around, that is.
“He’s still here,” Baalke said. “Right now, he’s out there, he’s practicing, he’s doing good in his rehab, that seems to be progressing well. He’s going to all the meetings, he’s very into it, he’s very attentive, he’s working hard. The coaches are excited about it, just as they are about getting a chance to work with all these guys. And there’s really nothing else to report.”
Also Wednesday, Baalke said retired 49ers right tackle Anthony Davis wouldn’t show up to join the team until he has been reinstated to the NFL.
Davis, who walked away from football last June at age 25 following a head injury, has said he plans to file for reinstatement.
Davis was the 49ers’ first-round draft choice — the 11th overall pick— in the 2010 draft out of Rutgers. He was affected by a concussion late in the 2014 season.
On April 1, Davis posted on Twitter: “Dealing with Trent is giving me a headache.”
“Gave him a headache? It’s like me speaking to you, it gives me a headache!” Baalke said during his meeting with beat writers.
“I’m not going to get into our conversations within the media. We’ve had several text messages back and forth and that’s the extent of the conversation. There’s nothing more to add to it than that,” Baalke said. “You have to ask him. It’s voluntary (offseason program), No. 1. And he’s not a member of the National Football League, No. 2. So he can’t show up until he gets reinstated.”