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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 30

Posted by Taylor Price on November 30, 2012 – 10:19 AM


Time and time again the San Francisco 49ers have proven to be a united front. Two recent examples shed a bright light on the team-oriented locker room.

According to CSN Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco, teamwork was involved in the recent five-year contract extension for All-Pro linebacker NaVorro Bowman. Three players, Vernon Davis, Carlos Rogers and Ray McDonald, all restructured their contracts to give the 49ers enough cap flexibility to sign the talented linebacker long-term.

The other example would be the professionalism shown by Alex Smith in the wake of Jim Harbaugh’s decision to start Colin Kaepernick Sunday in St. Louis. In order to understand the potential reasoning for the move, Mike Silver of Yahoo! Sports caught up with a cast of Harbaugh’s former teammates to learn more about the 49ers coach’s playing career as it relates to his coaching decisions.

Hall of Fame running back Marshall Faulk told Silver, “I’m pretty sure about the fact that this is not a game-playing thing for him. It’s for the greater good of the team. There is no personal gain for him. Everything he does is for the greater good of that team, and he’s not going to deviate from that.”

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Alex Smith Discusses QB Situation

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 29, 2012 – 3:23 PM

Being the competitor he is, Alex Smith was understandably upset to hear that he won’t be the starting 49ers quarterback on Sunday in St. Louis.

Earlier this week, coach Jim Harbaugh met with Smith and Colin Kaepernick, eventually telling both talented signal-callers that Kaepernick would get the starting nod for the third straight game. While Smith wishes he could be out on the field, he will be counted on to be a valuable asset and teammate for Kaepernick.

“This is such a great team, such a great group of guys in this locker room,” Smith said. “There’s something special going on. It’s a tough pill to swallow, for sure.”

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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 29

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 29, 2012 – 11:21 AM

The 49ers are no strangers to quality quarterbacks. Dating back to the likes of Y.A. Tittle and John Brodie to Joe Montana and Steve Young, San Francisco has been spoiled with signal-callers throughout the years. The 2012 49ers are lucky to have two players under center that have led the team to big victories: Colin Kaepernick and Alex Smith.

A huge contingent of media gathered at 49ers headquarters on Wednesday, as coach Jim Harbaugh revealed Kaepernick will receive the start this Sunday in St. Louis, his third straight for the team. The decision to name the second-year emerging star as the quarterback was dissected every which way by the media, including Tim Kawakami of the Bay Area News Group.

“QB coach Geep Chryst and OC Greg Roman are certainly hands-on and deeply involved in all parts of the QB play,” Kawakami wrote. “But I think we have to give most of the credit for this to Harbaugh–who did some things with Andrew Luck, I seem to recall. Harbaugh has a fine focus on the QB spot, and the guy can flat-out coach the position.”

Today’s Morning Tailgate rounds up all the Kaepernick coverage, Pro Bowl voting leaders, Santa Clara Stadium news and more.

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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 28

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 28, 2012 – 11:24 AM

Who’s got better linebackers than the 49ers? All-Pro NaVorro Bowman inked a five-year contract extension on Tuesday that will keep him with the 49ers until the 2018 season. Combined with the contract status of the team’s other linebackers, Aldon Smith (Signed through 2015), Patrick Willis (2016) and Ahmad Brooks (2017), it will be interesting to watch the new group during the final stages of Candlestick Park’s great history and entering the new home of the 49ers in 2014.

Kevin Kurz of CSNBayArea.com described the scene at 49ers headquarters as Bowman talked to the media after signing his extension. “The move ensures that Bowman and fellow linebacker and good friend Patrick Willis will be together through at least the 2016 season,” Kurz wrote. “In fact, Willis was among the first people Bowman gave his good news. He just couldn’t keep the secret any longer.”

Tuesday was also a noteworthy day for bad reasons, as Kendall Hunter and Kyle Williams were placed on the season-ending Injured Reserved list. Read up on all the latest 49ers new after the jump.

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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 26

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 26, 2012 – 11:28 AM

The 49ers are simply spoiled at quarterback. Second-year signal-caller Colin Kaepernick is gaining believers nationwide after he helped lead the 49ers to a 31-21 road victory at New Orleans in his second career start on Sunday, following San Francisco’s 6-2-1 start to the season with Alex Smith.

Cam Inman of the Bay Area News Group examined the big 49ers win, while his colleague Mark Purdy focused on the quarterbacks situation after the game.

“It’s all quite entertaining to discuss,” Purdy wrote. “We keep learning more about Kaepernick with every passing day. Donte Whitner, the 49ers safety who also scored on an interception return, has become friendly with Kaepernick because the two often find themselves working out simultaneously at the team’s practice facility in Santa Clara. Whitner said that Kaepernick is often the first man to show up on the premises.”

Today’s Morning Tailgate rounds up more headlines from New Orleans and shows you why it pays to wear a 49ers jacket when walking around the Bay Area.

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Roman: Alex Smith Not Cleared for Contact

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 22, 2012 – 3:17 PM

Quarterback updates are all the rage at 49ers headquarters these days. On Thursday, offensive coordinator Greg Roman offered the latest news on Alex Smith, saying he hopes the signal-caller will finally be cleared for contact on Friday.

Smith wore a black jersey designated for non-contact players during the Thanksgiving practice session, before Roman briefed reporters on the latest developments between Smith and Colin Kaepernick.

“No decision has been made,” Roman said. “We’re hopeful that Alex gets cleared tomorrow, physically. We’re confident in both quarterbacks to be on the field. We’re always going to weigh all the information as we have it and make the best decision for the team at the time. We have ultimate confidence in either.”

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Thanksgiving Tailgate: Nov. 22

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 22, 2012 – 12:57 PM

While the rest of America gets ready for the best meal of the year, the 49ers are working hard at team headquarters on Thanksgiving. Members of the team recently helped out Second Harvest Food Bank by serving food to local residents. Thanksgiving also brings memories of one of the greatest Joe Shows of all-time from 2009, when Pro Bowl LT Joe Staley talked turkey and Ricky Jean Francois debuted his PBJ dance on 49ers.com.

Before you gobble, gobble your turkey, you probably want to read the latest headlines on the 49ers quarterback situation. While Jim Harbaugh and the team aren’t expected to announce their decision until game, conflicting reports surfaced on Twitter Wednesday night regarding Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick.

Smith was listed as a limited participant in practice on Wednesday as he tries to recover from a concussion he suffered in the Week 10 24-24 tie with St. Louis. Kaepernick is coming off a strong performance in his first NFL start, as he led the 49ers to an impressive 32-7 win over the highly-touted Bears on “Monday Night Football.”

Rael Enteen of CSNBayArea.com featured the different reports from Sports Illustrated and ESPN, while the rest of today’s Thanksgiving Tailgate rounds up the latest speculation and analysis of the quarterback situation.

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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 21

Posted by Alex Espinoza on November 21, 2012 – 10:18 AM

Randy Moss has become a key veteran presence in the the 49ers locker room since he joined San Francisco this offseason. While he may not have the eye-popping statistics that most fans know him for, those within the organization know how valuable he is to the team.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com spoke to Moss earlier this season, who told Maiocco that the best way to get to know him is to take a visit to his hometown. So Maiocco and camera crews visited Rand, W.V., during the the 49ers’ trip to Youngstown, Ohio, to get a better look at what shaped the man in the No. 84 jersey. You can watch videos on CSNBayArea.com and read Maiocco’s background story as well.

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate rounds up 49ers quarterback headlines, looks at the Kraft Hunger Bowl, which is headed to the new Santa Clara Stadium, and more.

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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 20

Posted by Taylor Price on November 20, 2012 – 11:49 AM

Who will start at quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers in New Orleans this week? Perhaps Jim Harbaugh will shed light on the decision-making process in his 4:30 p.m. PT conference call with the media.

For now, speculation over who the 49ers will start on the road against the suddenly hot Saints will have to continue.

Here’s what we know: Alex Smith still has to be cleared for contact. Meanwhile, Colin Kaepernick had a very successful showing in first career start against Chicago completing 16 of 23 passes for 243 yards with two touchdowns and a quarterback rating of 133.1.

Before Smith suffered a concussion, he was 19-5 since the start of 2011 and led the 49ers to the NFC title game. If healthy, Smith provides the 49ers excellent leadership, play-making ability and decision-making for the offense.

Kaepernick, however, remains the hot topic of discussion after leading the offense on four consecutive scoring drives to start the game leaving Chicago defenders thoroughly impressed.

“He made some good throws when he had to,” Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher said. “He did whatever he wanted to; he had all kinds of time.”

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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 19

Posted by Taylor Price on November 19, 2012 – 10:45 AM

San Francisco 49ers starting quarterback Alex Smith will not play tonight against the Chicago Bears. Colin Kaepernick will make his first NFL start.

The team confirmed the news which was first reported by ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, who tweeted earlier in the morning that the 49ers quarterback did not pass his final contact test.

ESPN’s other top football information man, Adam Schefter, said on Sportscenter this morning that the 49ers quarterback took half the first-team reps at Sunday’s walk-through, but did not pass the final test of the NFL’s concussion protocol.

“In a time like this, they’re going to make sure players get as much rest as possible before they’re brought back on the field,” Schefter went on to say.

As an organization, the 49ers have been heavily involved in player safety. The team’s Co-Chairman, Dr. John York, is the Chairman of the NFL’s Committee on Health and Safety.

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