SAN FRANCISCO — Joe Montana once made headlines by signing a mega contract of his own. In 1990, Joe Cool earned a cool $4 million in base salary, the first player in NFL history to top that plateau.

Colin Kaepernick's new deal -- $61 million guaranteed — makes Montana's old bench mark look like pocket change.

And the 49ers legend is happy for him.

"Hey, more power to those guys if they can get what they can get,'' Montana, now 57, said Wednesday. "Because you never know. It may end tomorrow. The game is crazy physical. You see all these lawsuits about injuries, so whatever money they can get -- it's worth it."

Montana was back on his old home field Wednesday to promote the upcoming "Legends of Candlestick" flag football game to be played July 12. The three-time Super Bowl MVP leads a roster that also includes Steve Young, Jerry Rice, Dwight Clark and Roger Craig.

Those 49ers legends will face off against a team of NFL stars featuring Dan Marino, Tim Brown and Everson Walls in what is being billed as the final football game at doomed Candlestick Park. (Details at LegendsofCandlestick.com)

Montana was headed out the door for the promo event when he got wind of Kaepernick's deal worth up to $110 million over six years.

Montana said the contract sends a message: "It tells everybody he's going to be here and he's the guy."


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"He's had some pretty good years,'' he added. "I guess that (the 49ers) are going to put their money in that basket. You've already got a guy who knows the system and is playing well. What is this, his third or fourth year? So it's do-or-die, or about that time.

"There's a lot of pressure with the money. But when you get out there on the field, you don't even think about money."

For more on the 49ers, see Cam Inman's Hot Read blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/49ers. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/CamInman.