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Morning Tailgate: Lattimore Stays Patient

Posted by Taylor Price on July 23, 2013 – 11:38 AM

Marcus Lattimore is currently on San Francisco’s Active/Non-Football Injury List. However, the fourth-round pick remains determined to make an impact for the 49ers.

How soon is the question.

Lattimore told Yahoo! Sports that he feels like he could practice now, but will wait until team physicians deem him 100-percent ready to join his 49ers teammates. Lattimore suffered multiple knee injuries in college and is nine months removed from a devastating injury that caused him to slide in the 2013 NFL Draft.

The star college running back at South Carolina said he’s, “cool” with the rehab process with the 49ers. Lattimore added, “It gives me more time to make sure I’m really ready when I do practice.”

Lattimore won’t be out on with the 49ers at training camp practices, but he’ll continue to work his way back to playing shape. It’s a situation football fans all over the country will monitor until he makes his triumphant return.

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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Morning Tailgate: Asomugha Fascinates

Posted by Taylor Price on July 11, 2013 – 11:39 AM

Nnamdi Asomugha’s role on the San Francisco 49ers is one of the most fascinating storylines set to unfold in 2013, according to NFL.com’s Adam Schein, who named the 11-year veteran cornerback as the No. 4 most fascinating player to track in 2013.

Asomugha, 32, has spoken positively about his early experience with the 49ers. The four-time All-Pro cornerback told reporters that he likes San Francisco’s defensive scheme and has instantly fit in well with new teammates in the locker room.

Comfort is one thing, but many NFL observers are curious to see how Asomugha will perform in his return to the Bay Area.

Count Schein in the group.

“This offseason, however, Asomugha signed with arguably the most talented team in the NFL, to play on arguably the most talented defense in the NFL,” Schein wrote. “Plus, Niners coach Jim Harbaugh has a way of bringing out the best in players. Asomugha escaped Philly after being the poster child for disaster, returned to the Bay Area and just got married. I am fascinated to see which Nnamdi we get this year.”

More headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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MT: Crabtree Shares Rehab Update

Posted by Taylor Price on July 2, 2013 – 11:27 AM

Michael Crabtree hasn’t gone silent after suffering an Achilles injury in offseason workouts. The leading wideout for the San Francisco 49ers has used his Twitter account to share updates on his outlook for the 2013 season. He’s also made several comments on the NBA Finals. Crabtree’s champion pick, the San Antonio Spurs, lost to the Heat. But Crabtree hasn’t been quiet on Twitter since the NBA season wrapped up.

The 49ers wideout informed his 132,000-plus followers that he’s returning to the gym.

“I’m ready,” Crabtree wrote.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee examined the post from the 49ers wideout and explained the rehab process from the perspective of Dr. Eric Giza, chief of the foot and ankle service at UC Davis.

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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MT: McDonald Shines at Minicamp

Posted by Taylor Price on June 17, 2013 – 8:21 AM

San Francisco’s second-round draft pick caught the eye of many practice observers at 49ers minicamp.

Vance McDonald also caught several passes in the three days of mandatory camp. Some were high, some were low and some were even behind the 6-foot-4, 270-pound tight end. No matter, the former Rice standout showcased his soft hands throughout the minicamp with intermediate and downfield receptions.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee singled out McDonald’s play as one of the key takeaways from veteran minicamp.

“Vance McDonald may have been the biggest standout among the 11-man (rookie) draft class,” Barrows wrote. “He was a favorite for all the quarterbacks this spring, and he showed a real knack for catching passes that weren’t exactly on target… He also is quite agile for his size, and on several occasions was able to twist his body and reach back for passes that were thrown behind him. Quarterbacks love to see that, and it builds confidence that he is a safe and reliable target.”

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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MT: Minicamp Rounds Out 49ers Offseason

Posted by Taylor Price on June 11, 2013 – 11:33 AM

Before we begin today’s Morning Tailgate, we’d like to reiterate the condolences felt by the entire 49ers organization following a morning incident at the team’s new stadium construction site.

The team will hold a three-day mandatory minicamp and will come together to finish off the 2013 offseason. Head coach Jim Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Greg Roman are both scheduled to speak in the afternoon.

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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MT: Jim Harbaugh’s Bucket List

Posted by Taylor Price on June 6, 2013 – 11:06 AM

He just might be the closest thing to the world’s most interesting man.

Jim Harbaugh’s off the field activities as the San Francisco 49ers coach are unique to say the least. It speaks to his wide-ranging interests when he’s not working with professional football players.

On Tuesday, Harbaugh told Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News that his bucket list included the wish of purchasing a motor home.

Harbaugh’s only driven an RV once, but would like to own one at some point.

After the 49ers coach made a cameo on Judge Judy this week, Inman noted the numerous activities Harbaugh has taken part in during his tenure in San Francisco:

– Drive the pace car in last month’s Indy 500. (Harbaugh has been a co-owner of a racing team since his late-1990s playing days with the Indianapolis Colts.)

– Meet baseball idol Willie Mays. He did so last year when Mays attended a 49ers practice (and later hosted Harbaugh and his father Jack at his house to watch a Giants game).

– Play in the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. He’s done that the past two years, even placing a respectable 13th this year with partner Jason Day.

– Receive inspirational speeches from military heroes, including Gen. Martin Dempsey (Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman), Marine Corps Col. Jim Minnick, four-star Army Gen. Bob Cone, Sgt. Dontae Skywalker (at Arlington National Cemetary) and an anonymous Navy SEAL.

– Moonlight as a team manager at an Indiana University men’s basketball game, which he did last year for Hoosiers coach (and brother-in-law) Tom Crean.

– Have his silhouette depicted on a T-shirt. OK, he never publicly opined for this, but Nike has come out with a $28 shirt featuring a side view of Harbaugh in a black top and khaki pants.

– Phone into John Madden’s daily radio segment, which he did in January for advice on being a first-time Super Bowl coach.

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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MT: Eric Mangini Bolsters 49ers Staff

Posted by Taylor Price on June 5, 2013 – 11:58 AM

The 49ers haven’t had much turnover in the coaching ranks since Jim Harbaugh signed a five-year contract in February of 2011.

That’s not to say the coaching staff can’t be improved mid-offseason. Harbaugh’s staff received a boost on Tuesday with the announcement of veteran coach Eric Mangini joining the 49ers as a senior offensive consultant.

Mangini has 15 years of NFL coaching experience and is looking to become a head coach once more after stints with the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns.

For now, San Francisco’s new consultant is focused on growing his offensive knowledge. Mangini comes to the 49ers with plenty of defensive awareness. In his new role, he’ll use his defensive background to help the 49ers offensive coaches scheme against opposing teams and understand how the opponent will attack.

Jim Harbaugh felt like the hiring of Mangini makes the 49ers “better” in 2013.

Kevin Lynch of the San Francisco Chronicle shared five examples of how Mangini can help the team.

More 49ers headlines and OTA notes can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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Boldin Passes on White House Visit

Posted by Taylor Price on June 4, 2013 – 10:36 AM

Loyalty to the fullest.

Anquan Boldin is not visiting the White House this week with his former club, the Baltimore Ravens. Instead, the new 49ers wide receiver is sticking around in the Bay Area to finish out the final three sessions of OTAs.

Boldin explained through his verified Twitter account.

Young receivers on the roster like fourth-round pick Quinton Patton (pictured right) have learned a great deal from the 11-year veteran receiver already this offseason.

“Since Anquan Boldin’s been out here,”  Patton told 49ers.com, “he’s been helping me with my releases.”

The 49ers wideouts will continue to soak up knowledge with Boldin being a solid teammates and bypassing a trip to Washington D.C.

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate and be sure to check back in the afternoon for OTA coverage on 49ers.com.

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MT: Joe Staley Temporarily Sidelined

Posted by Taylor Price on May 29, 2013 – 11:25 AM

The 49ers starting left tackle was not practicing at Organized Team Activities on Tuesday. Joe Staley was in attendance, but not participating in the two-hour workout.

After the open OTA session, Jim Harbaugh informed reporters that Staley had a minor procedure done this offseason.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com reported it was a minor meniscus tear in Staley’s left knee.

Staley went to Twitter to alleviate any concerns from the team’s fan base.

“Procedure I had this offseason was very minor but necessary,” Staley wrote. “I will be 100 percent and better than ever by training camp.”

More 49ers headlines can be found in today’s Morning Tailgate.

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MT: Kaepernick Builds His Brand

Posted by Taylor Price on May 23, 2013 – 10:08 AM

Colin Kaepernick keeps building his understanding of the 49ers offense at the team’s Organized Team Activities. Off the field, Kaepernick is growing his marketing appeal.

Months removed from a Super Bowl appearance, the 49ers quarterback has been racking up endorsement deals. Kaepernick’s commercial appeal was the recent subject of a Forbes.com piece.

Kaepernick, however, is not mixing publicity with football. The 49ers quarterback has been “sharp” this offseason according to his coach, Jim Harbaugh.

“He’s been really strong,” the 49ers coach told reporters on Wednesday. “Running the offense, throwing the ball extremely well. He’s in great physical shape with a total command of the offense.”

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