Christian McCaffrey's OTA absence is not contract related (but his contract is a little out of whack)

49ers running back Christian McCaffrey didn't show up for the start of OTAs in San Francisco. Coach Kyle Shanahan tiptoed around the reason(s) for McCaffrey's absence.

Per a source with knowledge of the situation, McCaffrey absence isn't due to his contract.

That doesn't mean his contract isn't or won't be an issue. McCaffrey is due to make $11.8 million this year under the contract the 49ers inherited when trading for him during the 2022 season. (He has a $200,000 workout bonus that he'll obviously be jeopardizing by not showing up for offseason work.)

McCaffrey got his current deal after only three seasons in Carolina. Although the deal has a new-money average of $16 million per year, the 49ers have been paying roughly $12 million annually.

While that's great as running backs go, McCaffrey is more than a running back. He's the most important non-quarterback on the team's offense. But he's paid less than receiver Deebo Samuel or tight end George Kittle.

Samuel's deal averages nearly $24 million per season.

Last year, McCaffrey accounted for more than 2,000 yards from scrimmage and 21 touchdowns. Samuel had 1,117 yards from scrimmage and 12 total touchdowns.

That's not a knock on Deebo. It's an illustration of McCaffrey's value.

Again, it's not an issue for now. It could be as Week 1 draws closer.