According to reports, the San Francisco 49ers are set to trade defensive lineman Kentwan Balmer to the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick.
Balmer, a former first round selection in the 2008 Draft, has been a major disappointment from a performance perspective. So far, he's registered a mere 19 tackles and has failed to start a single game.
I believe it's safe to say he's been a major bust.
Even making matters worse, Balmer has been involved in NCAA allegations saying that he paid for a trip to California for two of his former UNC teammates. Despite not appearing to be a significant issue, it is a violation of the NCAA's preferential treatment rule. That being so, this would have been an unwelcomed distraction for the 49ers organization.
Now, if that wasn't bad enough, Balmer also decided to skip out on mandatory training camp sessions. At first he was given a two-day leave to handle his NCAA matters. However, last Wednesday head coach Mike Singletary informed him that he was being considered unexcused. He was then given a five-day letter telling him to report back to the team, but he failed to do so.
"He's not here. He is under contract. The fact that he's not here, that speaks to me.... If he wanted to be here, he'd be here," Singletary stated when asked about the situation.
In response, Balmer told the San Jose Mercury News, "People are making a big deal about nothing. I feel like the 49ers could do a better job of saying that, but it's not my place to say."
That said, I had predicted the team would cut ties with the two-year pro immediately.
With the little to no potential he had displayed on game days, along with his apparent lack of desire and his new added baggage, it was simply best for the two sides to part ways.
On the other hand, the Seahawks did add a big body (6'5", 315 lbs.) to their interior defensive line. With the appropriate training, he could add quality depth and work his way into their four-man front rotation.
I think a fresh start is exactly what he needs, and I hope he can make the best of it. It was unfortunate that his tenure in San Francisco had to end this way, but then again, I felt that drafting him was a huge mistake in the first place.
Nonetheless, I wish him the best of luck moving forward with his career and life in general.