After demanding a raise the 49ers refused to give him, running back Raheem Mostert now has requested a trade, according to his agent, Brett Tessler.
Mostert signed a three-year extension with the 49ers in 2019 that pays him $2.9 million per season—it’s a special-teams contract, as his agent pointed out. He had just 42 career carries before last season. But midway through the 2019 season, he became the 49ers lead running back and led the NFL in yards per carry with 5.6. He was one of the main reasons the 49ers went to the Super Bowl; they might not have made it had he not run for 220 yards and four touchdowns in the NFC championship game versus the Packers.
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Now he’s the 49ers main running back, and wants a raise. Can you blame him? Wouldn’t you want a raise? Fair is fair. If the 49ers want him to be their running back, they should pay him like a running back. At least acknowledge that his role on the team has changed. Don’t blatantly take advantage of him. He’s 28. His career might not last much longer.
The 49ers presently have more than $12 million in cap space.
If they were to give Mostert an additional $2.4 million in 2020, he would be one of the 10 highest-paid running backs in the NFL. $2.4 million is nothing to the 49ers.
The 49ers are being stubborn and self destructive. They need Mostert in 2020—they probably can’t win the Super Bowl without him. Maybe they could if they still had running back Matt Breida, but they traded him to the Dolphins. So Mostert’s backup is Tevin Coleman, who’s mediocre.
Better to give Mostert an additional $2.4 million than to trade him out of spite. He’s worth far more than whatever the 49ers would get in return for him.
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