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Morning Tailgate: Alex Smith Departs

Posted by Alex Espinoza on March 14, 2013 – 11:26 AM

Player turnover is inevitable in the NFL. On Wednesday, the 49ers welcomed Glenn Dorsey to the organization while Alex Smith, Dashon Goldson and Isaac Sopoaga held their introductory press conferences with their new teams.

Following an eventful eight-year run that culminated with back-to-back playoff runs, Smith joined Kansas City coach Andy Reid and general manager John Dorsey at the podium to greet the local press on Wednesday. Ann Killion of the San Francisco Chronicle shared her impressions of Smith’s first appearance with his new organziation.

“Wednesday was the first day of Smith’s marriage to the Chiefs, following his quick divorce from the 49ers,” Killion said. “Both parties sounded infatuated with each other. Smith targeted the Chiefs as soon as he realized he wouldn’t be released, and hoped for a trade.”

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate updates you on the latest activity with the 49ers in free agency.

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Morning Tailgate: NFL Bracketology

Posted by Alex Espinoza on March 13, 2013 – 10:25 AM

There have been thousands and thousands of plays in the proud history of the NFL, but does “The Catch” stand above the rest? With the help of the 49ers Faithful, Dwight Clark’s iconic, last-minute touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys in the 1981 NFC Championship can be crowned as the greatest play in NFL history.

NFL.com recently unveiled it’s NFL Bracketology contest, which will begin with the first round of voting on Monday. Clark’s catch will compete against 63 other plays, including Steve Young’s epic 49-yard run against Minnesota and Terrell Owens’ playoff catch against Green Bay, in football’s version of March madness.

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate rounds up the busy first day of free agency for the 49ers, including the Alex Smith and Anquan Boldin trades and other player movement.

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Morning Tailgate: Free Agency Primer

Posted by Alex Espinoza on March 8, 2013 – 11:59 AM

The NFL free agency frenzy is just around the corner. Starting Friday night at 9 p.m. PT, teams can start negotiating contracts with the agents of free agent players, but no deals can be signed until 1 p.m PT on Tuesday, March 12.

Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle noted the ins and outs of the free agent process in a recent post. “For the first time, the league will tiptoe into free agency by allowing teams to begin negotiating with agents of pending unrestricted free agents in advance of the official start of free agency (1 p.m. PT Tuesday),” Branch wrote. “Contracts can’t be signed until Tuesday. During the three-day negotiating period, a UFA can’t take visits or have contact with another team, other than his own.”

The 49ers would also like to invite their Faithful Fans to a Colin Kaepernick autograph signing on behalf of Gatorade later today from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at Danville Safeway (3496 Camino Tassajara).

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate looks ahead to free agency and more.

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Posted in Announcements | 34 Comments »

Morning Tailgate: No Franchise Tag

Posted by Alex Espinoza on March 5, 2013 – 11:03 AM

By the time the clock struck 1 p.m. on Monday afternoon, it was official: the 49ers wouldn’t be using their franchise tag in 2013. Many viewed All-Pro safety Dashon Goldson as a the team’s top candidate to receive the franchise tag, which would keep him in San Francisco for at least one more season. Once the deadline passed without an agreement, Goldson and 49ers CEO Jed York interacted on Twitter, both stating their desire to work out a long-term deal.

The rest of Today’s Morning Tailgate looks at the latest reactions to the 49ers roster as the team approaches the league’s new calendar year on March 12 and the innovative front office.

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2012 Plays of the Year: Big Hits

Posted by Taylor Price on March 4, 2013 – 2:00 PM

We need your help in selecting the top plays from the 2012 season. We’re asking our Faithful fans to choose the top takeawaytouchdownsack, big play and biggest hit of the season. Next, the winning five plays (one from each category), will move on to the championship round to determine 49ers.com’s “Top Play of 2012.”

Watch our “Top 5” video highlights on the best plays for each category, then vote in the poll section of the corresponding blog post to see which top play will reach the championship round.

Help us crown the top play of 2012 by choosing your favorite big hit from this past season. You can vote for your favorite big hit up until Wednesday at noon. Let’s take a look at the five nominees.

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Morning Tailgate: Bowman Visits Uganda

Posted by Alex Espinoza on March 4, 2013 – 11:35 AM

Following in the footsteps of his teammate Vernon Davis, NaVorro Bowman is in Africa to help fit local, underprivileged residents with hearing aids. Davis made the trip in 2011 with his brother, Colts cornerback Vontae Davis, and several other players. Comcast SportsNet Bay Area shared a four-part video series. (Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4)

On Monday, Bowman tweeted out a picture of himself helping the Pros For Africa Foundation in Uganda. For more information, visit ProsForAfrica.com.

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate looks at the franchise tag situation on the verge of Monday’s deadline and more.

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Posted in Announcements | 11 Comments »

2012 Plays of the Year: Big Plays

Posted by Alex Espinoza on February 26, 2013 – 2:29 PM

We need your help in selecting the top plays from the 2012 season. We’re asking our Faithful fans to choose the top takeaway, touchdown, sack, big play and biggest hit of the season. Next, the winning five plays (one from each category), will move on to the championship round to determine 49ers.com’s “Top Play of 2012.”

Watch our “Top 5” video highlights on the best plays for each category, then vote in the poll section of the corresponding blog post to see which top play will reach the championship.

Help us crown the top play of 2012 by choosing your favorite big play from this past season. You can vote for your favorite big play up until Thursday at noon. Let’s take a look at the five nominees.

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Morning Tailgate: Offseason Trade Talk

Posted by Alex Espinoza on February 25, 2013 – 11:14 AM

Alex Smith played a huge role in San Francisco’s Super Bowl run in 2012, posting a 6-2-1 record as the 49ers starter through the first 10 weeks of the season. But with the emergence of Colin Kaepernick in the second half of the season, many are wondering what the future holds for the 49ers quarterback situation.

Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com helped fuel the latest round of speculation, as he cited league sources who said the 49ers have a tentative agreement to trade Smith to another team once the league year starts on March 12.

“No trades can be official until the league year begins March 12, so nothing can be finalized now, but sources said the two teams involved have the key terms in place at this point, and will finalize it down the road,” La Canfora wrote. “At this point, I don’t know the identity of the other team involved, but the 49ers have made it clear they are moving Smith and he will not be a part of the team this year.”

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate wraps up weekend headlines from the NFL Scouting Combine and more.

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Morning Tailgate: Offseason Work

Posted by Alex Espinoza on February 19, 2013 – 10:40 AM

Oscars? Nope. Grammys? Nope. Colin Kaepernick would rather be in Atlanta, working out with his teammates.

Just days after leading the 49ers to the Super Bowl XLVII, Kaepernick was back at work at CES Performance, his home away from home during the offseason. Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee wrote about Kaepernick’s offseason regimen and how he’s joined by 49ers receivers Ricardo Lockette and Chad Hall.

“Rather than pressing the flesh with Anne Hathaway and Denzel Washington on the red carpet in Hollywood, Kaepernick is busting his tail alongside little-known college players on the green grass at CES Performance, a training facility in Atlanta,” Barrows wrote. “That’s where Kaepernick got ready for the 2011 draft. And it’s where he figured he’d find training partners who are as hungry as him.”

The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate spotlights Aldon Smith’s mixed-martial arts offseason training, the upcoming combine and more.

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Posted in Announcements | 22 Comments »

Morning Tailgate: Underrated FAs

Posted by Taylor Price on February 15, 2013 – 10:57 AM

Free agency doesn’t begin until March 12, but that’s not stopping NFL scribes and pundits from looking at the best players soon to be available.

In the case of NFL.com’s Adam Schein, the most underrated free agents came into greater focus in a recent post. The respected columnist listed his top-nine underrated free agents with 49ers Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro safety Dashon Goldson coming in at No. 3.

Goldson, a two-time Pro Bowler in consecutive seasons, recorded nine tackles in Super Bowl XLVII. It’s hard to believe a first-team All-Pro would be underrated, but Schein believes the 49ers defensive star power covers up Goldson’s impact play. After the season concluded, Jim Harbaugh made it clear that the 49ers want their 28-year-old safety around long-term.

Schein believes that’s the right train of thought.

“Goldson was the San Francisco 49ers’ ‘franchise player’ last year, so chances are he won’t be slapped with the tag again, as that would force the Niners to shell out a gigantic one-year raise,” wrote Schein, who voted for Goldson to be a first-team All-Pro. “Goldson wants a long-term commitment from San Francisco, and he has earned it.”

Goldson’s situation will be one to monitor when free agency talk heats up in the coming weeks.

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Posted in Morning Tailgate | 33 Comments »
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