The 49ers signed offensive tackle Anthony Davis to a five-year, $37 million contract extension. A 2010 first-round picki, Davis is part of a road-grading offensive line that returns intact in 2013.
"Anthony is a very hard working, dedicated and talented young player who has earned the respect of our entire organization," said 49ers GM Trent Baalke. "Having already made significant strides early in his career, Anthony is just beginning to realize his full potential. We look forward to watching him achieve even greater results in the years to come."
Part of the blessing of having talented young core players is the curse of trying to keep them together by satisfying their contract needs, as the San Francisco 49ers are soon to find out.
The Super Bowl runner-up plans to begin taking steps toward long-term roster stability, Baalke said last month, and his plan was put back into motion Friday. On the heels of long-term deals with linebackers NaVorro Bowman and Patrick Willis and running back Frank Gore, Baalke turned his attention to another young veteran.
Offensive guard Mike Iupati, wide receiver Michael Crabtree and outside linebacker Aldon Smith could soon be in line for contract extensions.
Quarterback Colin Kaepernick made $670,000 in 2012 and is halfway through the four-year deal he signed as a second-round pick in 2011. The average annual total earnings (salary plus bonuses) for top-tier starting quarterbacks is more than $11 million.