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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: Kendall Hunter Back Sprinting

Posted by Taylor Price on April 18, 2013 – 10:07 AM

The San Francisco 49ers enjoy a bevy of talented running backs who can run Greg Roman’s complex offensive system. One of them, third-year runner Kendall Hunter, is back running sprints this offseason. He’s doing so five months removed from a torn left Achilles. Perhaps, Kobe Bryant might want rehab notes from the 49ers running back.

Hunter shared details of his progress with Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle.

“I’m just doing what the trainers want me to do,” Hunter told Branch. “That’s the process. I feel and know I can do more, but I’m not going to rush whatever the coaches and trainers want.”

Hunter rushed for 371 yards in 2012, good for 5.2 yards per carry. Hunter also scored two rushing touchdowns before injuring himself on Nov. 25 against the New Orleans Saints.

Hunter told Branch he’d like to participate in OTAs in May or San Francisco’s mandatory minicamp in June, but the talented running back understands the importance of a patient rehab process and expects to be held out of action until training camp.

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

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MT: 49ers Host Local Pro Day

Posted by Taylor Price on April 17, 2013 – 9:16 AM

CSNBayArea.com’s Matt Maiocco reported on Tuesday that a son of a 49ers Hall of Famer will visit team headquarters on Wednesday to take part in the team’s local pro day.

Nate Montana would be the player in the report. And yes, he’s the son of you know who.

Montana played as a backup quarterback at three different schools (Pasadena City College, Notre Dame and the University of Montana), before finding a starting role at West Virginia Wesleyan.

Montana started nine games at the NCAA Division II school, completing 51.6 percent of his passes with 19 touchdown passes and seven interceptions. Montana averaged 275.6 passing yards per game. He’s also been preparing for the NFL Draft with quarterback guru George Whitfield Jr.

It’s important to note that several pro day attendees have made their way on to the 49ers practice squad. For example, former Stanford safety Michael Thomas went undrafted, but made the practice squad in 2012 and has been signed to a reserve/future contract with the club. Wednesday’s pro day also marks the last day draft eligible players can visit the team’s Santa Clara headquarters.

49ers.com will cover the team’s annual pro day later in the afternoon and will have a full report on the workout.

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

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49ers Sign Thomas to Reserve/Future Deal

Posted by Alex Espinoza on February 11, 2013 – 2:53 PM

The San Francisco 49ers announced they have signed S Michael Thomas to a Reserve/Future contract.

Thomas (5-11, 182) signed with San Francisco on May 4, 2012, and spent the entire season on the team’s practice squad.

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Morning Tailgate: Aug. 17

Posted by Taylor Price on August 17, 2012 – 10:31 AM

Jim Harbaugh doesn’t subscribe to the “breaking camp” theory. Although there won’t be a practice today, the 49ers will conduct a “Mock Game” before departing to Houston for the team’s first preseason road trip.

To get you ready for San Francisco’s matchup with the Texans, check out our latest Niner Talk podcast which features interviews with quarterback Scott Tolzien and Drew Dougherty of Houston Texans TV.

Tolzien discussed Randy Moss’ positive influence on the locker room, as well as his mindset heading into an important preseason game. Tolzien said it’s all about maximizing opportunities. Dougherty also gave perspective on the opponent’s side of things and said the team’s fans are very friendly when it comes to tailgating. In you’re in Houston for the game, put on a smile and they’ll likely pass you some grub.

As for the current state of the 49ers, ESPN.com’s Mike Sando recently filed his Camp Confidential report on the recent developments in Santa Clara.

Sando asks if the strides shown by the 49ers passing game last season were only the start of something greater.

“That question ran through my mind while watching Smith fire passes on time and on target during a recent three-day stay at 49ers training camp. The answer became clearer every time Smith connected with newcomers Randy Moss and Mario Manningham, which was frequently. He appeared more accurate, more confident and more in command than I can ever recall seeing Smith during a training camp — or any other time, for that matter.”

More 49ers headlines can be found after the jump.

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Carlos Rogers Embraces Nickel Corner

Posted by Taylor Price on August 1, 2012 – 5:56 PM

Like many of his fellow defensive teammates on the San Francisco 49ers, Pro Bowl cornerback Carlos Rogers wants to master Vic Fangio’s complete system.

The starting cornerback who re-signed this offseason for four more seasons in San Francisco, said on Wednesday that he wants to get a better understanding of his defensive teammates’ full responsibilities now that they’re all experiencing a second season under the respected defensive coordinator’s guidance.

It’s important especially for Rogers, who lines up inside as the team’s nickel cornerback against multiple receiver formations.

“Nickel is something tough,” admitted Rogers, a 6-foot, 192-pound cornerback who recorded a career-high six interceptions for the 49ers last season. “You have to know crossing routes, working with the linebackers, sometimes they take the routes deep. There’s a lot of stuff. Sometimes you’re blitzing, sometimes you may have a run gap.”

Fangio considers the position to be a linebacker-type of role. Rogers, fearless when it comes to tackling, thrived in such a role, posting 57 tackles and 18 pass breakups in 2011.

Rogers performed well in the role because of his quickness, Fangio said.

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Morning Tailgate: June 14

Posted by Taylor Price on June 14, 2012 – 10:19 AM

The final day of San Francisco 49ers minicamp is here, and that means players will soon be on their own to stay fit and mentally sharp until training camp begins. But once practice concludes in the afternoon on Thursday, Jim Harbaugh will address the media on what he saw from his team in the offseason program.

Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio met with the media on Wednesday to discuss the strides being made by his unit. According to Fangio, the squad can be even better than last season, but matching eye-popping statistics like 38 forced turnovers might be difficult to duplicate.

However, Fangio has raised the expectations for the defense, and second-year linebacker Aldon Smith, whom Fangio expects to become an every-down linebacker in 2012.

More 49ers headlines can be found after the jump.

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Donte Whitner Mentors Young Safeties

Posted by Alex Espinoza on June 5, 2012 – 4:46 PM

Height has never been an issue for heavy-hitting Donte Whitner, who has established himself as one of football’s fiercest safeties. Heading into the 2012 season, Whitner finds himself surrounded by a couple of rookie safeties who have been labeled by some as undersized.

But listening to Whitner’s comments following Tuesday’s practice, sixth-round pick Trenton Robinson and undrafted signee Michael Thomas haven’t missed a beat despite their smaller stature.

“This is not really basketball,” Whitner said. “This is about who can run, who can jump, who can change direction and who can explode and hit people.”

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Roster Full of Harbaugh College Connections

Posted by Alex Espinoza on May 31, 2012 – 11:47 AM

When the 49ers began crafting their 90-man roster following the draft in late April, it was littered with connections from Jim Harbaugh’s college days. Among the familiar faces recently added this offseason was linebacker Eric Bakhtiari, who earned a tryout for the rookie minicamp and was signed to a two-year deal shortly thereafter.

Though he’s only played in three NFL games, making six special teams tackles in 2009 with the Tennessee Titans, Bakhtiari knows the league well  having bounced around on several practice squads.

“San Francisco, San Diego, Tampa, Tennessee, Miami, Cleveland, Kansas City,” Bakhtiari said. “I think that’s it.”

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Morning Tailgate: May 22

Posted by Taylor Price on May 22, 2012 – 9:50 AM

The wait is over. Organized Team Activities kick-off Tuesday at 49ers headquarters in Santa Clara. The players will take part in 10, voluntary OTA sessions that will allow veteran players to wear helmets for the first time this offseason.

Pro Bowl left tackle Joe Staley displayed his new look for the upcoming season by posting an Instagram photo of his new face-mask/dark grey visor combination.

As Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com notes, it’s the first offseason with the league’s new governing rules from the recent collective bargaining agreement taking effect. An emphasis on player safety stands as the biggest change.

However, it won’t be a completely full house for Tuesday’s opening OTA session. Notable rookies like second-round pick LaMichael James and undrafted wide receiver Chris Owusu can’t participate until their school graduation. According to Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee, safety Michael Thomas (Stanford), offensive lineman Al Netter (Northwestern) and defensive lineman Patrick Butrym (Wisconsin) can take part in the OTAs because they’ve graduated.

James, however, has been around fellow rookie A.J. Jenkins. Only, it was away from team headquarters. The duo took part in last weekend’s NFLPA Rookie Premiere event and seemed to be creating an instant bond.

Find more on James, the latest 49ers headlines and more after the jump.

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