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NFL star Brandon Aiyuk appears to unfollow 49ers' social media amid contract dispute

NFL star Brandon Aiyuk appears to unfollow 49ers’ social media amid contract dispute

Tooba Shakir 1 month ago 0 1

Brandon Aiyuk is coming off arguably the best season of his NFL career, finishing the 2023 campaign with seven touchdowns and a career-best 1,342 receiving yards.

Aiyuk was a 2020 first-round draft pick, and the San Francisco 49ers exercised his fifth-year option last year. So, unless he extends his contract, he’ll enter free agency after the 2024 season. 

Aiyuk and his representatives appear to be pushing to work out a long-term deal, sooner rather than later.

Whether he lands an extension with the Niners or elsewhere remains to be seen. Aiyuk has been linked to a number of trade rumors.

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Brandon Aiyuk looks on

Brandon Aiyuk of the San Francisco 49ers on the sideline before the Super Bowl against the Kansas City Chiefs at Allegiant Stadium Feb. 11, 2024, in Las Vegas.  (Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)

Amid the ongoing contract dispute, Aiyuk appears to have unfollowed the 49ers on social media

In recent years, there’s been a trend of athletes unhappy with their teams expressing frustration through social media platforms.

ARIK ARMSTEAD FELT ‘DISRESPECTED’ BY 49ERS AFTER SIGNING WITH JAGUARS IN FREE AGENCY

Kyler Murray appeared to unfollow the Arizona Cardinals and removed all references to the team from his social media account in 2022. He later reloaded his Instagram with previously deleted pictures, and he eventually agreed to a lucrative contract extension during the 2022 offseason.

In February, 49ers general manager John Lynch shared his hope Aiyuk would remain with the franchise for the long term.

“He served us very well as a franchise,” Lynch said at the NFL scouting combine. “I think we’ve got a nice track record of extending the players that are important to us, and Brandon’s a guy we want to keep around for a long time.”

Brandon Aiyuk makes a catch

Brandon Aiyuk (11) of the San Francisco 49ers catches a pass tipped by Kindle Vildor (29) of the Detroit Lions during the third quarter of the NFC championship game at Levi’s Stadium Jan. 28, 2024, in Santa Clara, Calif. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Under the terms of his deal, Aiyuk will make about $14.1 million in the final year of his rookie deal. During an appearance on Shannon Sharpe and Chad Ochocinco’s podcast, “Nightcap,” Aiyuk addressed his contract situation.

“I’m trying to get what I deserve,” Aiyuk said. “I feel like, this season, this season playing football, I figured out who I was as a person and a player, what I bring to the table, what I bring to the locker room, what I bring to the organization. 

“And just the value I hold when I walk in that building. People going to follow me because I’ve done it the right way since I’ve been in that building. From the first day I walked in there to when I was in there earlier this morning. I’ve done it the right way.”

Brandon Aiyuk vs the Cardinals

Brandon Aiyuk of the San Francisco 49ers warms up before a game against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi’s Stadium Jan. 8, 2023, in Santa Clara, Calif. (Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Aiyuk added he was hopeful an agreement could be reached.

“If they don’t see the worth in that [makes a walking motion with hands], that’s all it is. It ain’t nothing else besides that. I can’t get into it. We got professionals working on both sides. So, hopefully, we can come to a professional agreement and continue playing professional football.”

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Aiyuk has a projected annual market value of $24 million, according to Spotrac. He has not formally requested a trade.

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