Tag:San Francisco 49ers
Posted on: May 16, 2011 3:40 pm
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Glen Coffee is technically playing football again

Posted by Andy Benoit

Glen Coffee abruptly retired from professional football last summer. The 49ers’ 24-year-old running back said that God had bigger plans for him.

Less than a year later, Coffee has readopted the sport…sort of. Earlier this month he made his debut with the Northwest Florida Falcons of the Premier South Football League. The Falcons are a semi-pro team near Coffee’s hometown. They play their games at Davidson Middle School.

This doesn’t mean Coffee is angling for a comeback, though.

“I just enjoy recreational sports,” he told Adam Rosenburg of NFWDailyNews.com. “I figured it would just be another fun thing to do.”
Coffee is not even playing running back this time. Instead, he’s a starting linebacker/safety. He joined the team at the urge of a former high school teammate.

In his interview with Rosenburg, Coffee would not address why he left the NFL. He also did not get into specifics about what he’s been doing with his life since retirement, though he said he’s taking online classes in an effort to finish his degree from Alabama (he left college early to enter the 2009 NFL Draft).

“A lot of people think that because I quit, I don’t like football or I have something against it,” Coffee said. “It’s not like that. As a recreational sport, I still dig it. It’s just not what I wanted to do with my life.”

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Category: NFL
Posted on: May 13, 2011 8:44 pm
 

Kaepernick undergoes leg surgery

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

That headline, I’m sure, is EXACTLY what 49ers fans wanted to read. But apparently, the lower leg surgery performed on QB Colin Kaepernick recently was minor and not that big a deal.

Kaepernick"It's nothing serious at all," Kaepernick told the Sacramento Bee.

Kaepernick didn’t want to talk about the specifics of the injury, but he said the leg began to bother him toward the end of his 2010 season at Nevada. And though he managed to have an impressive Senior Bowl week showing, which certainly helped his draft status, he knew he needed to solve this problem before it potentially became an even bigger problem.

The 49ers knew as well, and they’re fine with the procedure. Of course, they also couldn’t talk to Kaepernick to consult with him or his doctors in order to help guide the decision. But in the end, Kaepernick and his team felt like this was the best possible route.

"He certainly could have (waited),” his agent, Scott Smith, said. “He played four games at Nevada and barely talked about it. Because of the lockout, the timing was as good as it's going to get."

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Posted on: May 8, 2011 9:58 pm
 

Aldon Smith could take Manny Lawson's job

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Last year, Andy and I engaged in a war of words when discussing 49ers LB Manny Lawson. I called him one of the top-five 3-4 LBs in the league, and Andy tried to lambast me (though I parried most of his attempts and struck back effectively).

Anyway, with the 49ers drafting Aldon Smith in the first round of last week’s draft, you have to wonder what happens with Lawson (pictured at right) in 20Lawson 11. Especially since he’s not under contract at this point (though, if the 2010 rules are put into place for 2011, Lawson would, once again, be a restricted free agent).

According to Comcast Sports Net, Lawson still could play a big role with San Francisco if he returns to the club.

But it seems like, eventually, Smith will take over the starting role (which is a perfectly appropriate goal for a man taken with the No. 7 pick overall), because he’s about 25 pounds heavier than Lawson and stronger (though I doubt his pass coverage skills are as good as Lawson’s).

But as Will pointed out in his 49ers Offseason Checkup, San Francisco’s LB corps, with Patrick Willis and Takeo Spikes is still pretty darn impressive. Even if Lawson isn’t retained.

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Posted on: May 4, 2011 9:31 am
 

NFC West draft truths revealed

Posted by Andy Benoit

One of the best things about the draft is that from it we can find out what teams really think about their current players. Excluding examples of teams filling obvious needs, here are some of the more revealing draft picks from 2011, with a quick blurb of what the team was really saying by making this pick.

Arizona Cardinals

2nd round, Ryan Williams, RB, Virginia Tech
We’re not sure Beanie Wells can stay healthy. Or that Tim Hightower is really all that good.

San Francisco 49ers
C. Kaepernick (US Presswire)
2nd round, Colin Kaepernick, QB, Nevada

Remember when we said that Alex Smith is still our guy? Yeah – that was a lie.

4th round, Kendall Hunter, RB, Oklahoma State
Glen Coffee screwed us last year.

Seattle Seahawks

1st round, James Carpenter, OT, Alabama
Sean Locklear is lazy and not worth signing.

St. Louis Rams

1st round, Robert Quinn, DE, North Carolina
Do you believe James Hall is as good as his 10.5 sacks last season suggest? Neither do we. Also, let’s face it, when we say Chris Long has a great motor (which he does), we’re also saying he’s not an elite athlete.

2nd round, Lance Kendricks, TE, Wisconsin
When the offensive starters are announced over the loudspeaker during pregame, we get a little squeamish hearing the name “Billy Bajema” called. For one, the guy should never start for any team. Ever. And for two, the name Bajema just sounds, you know, sorta dirty.

3rd round, Austin Pettis, WR, Boise State
We’re worried about Danario Alexander’s knees.

Check back throughout the week for other division’s Draft Truths Revealed. To see all Draft Truths Revealed, click the “Draft Truths” tag.

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Posted on: April 30, 2011 10:38 am
 

Niners still singing the Alex Smith tune

Posted by Andy Benoit

Colin Kaepernick is a 49er, which means Alex Smith is one no longer, right? Wrong.

"The plan for Alex is unchanged," 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh said Friday, according to CSN Bay Area. "Everything we said from the very beginning: We want to get the best players on our roster that we possibly can and throw out the balls and let them compete.
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"Alex has the ability and the license to be the starting quarterback -- same thing I said about (outside linebacker) Aldon (Smith) yesterday. Same goes for Colin. Guys will run on their own gas. We believe in competition and earning your positions around here.
"With Alex, we are rowing and we're not going to miss a beat. Nothing has changed."

For months, many have speculated that Harbaugh is genuinely fond of the former No. 1 overall drafted quarterback. But that’s mere speculation, as Harbaugh and Smith have had minimal interaction due to the lockout.

Smith, at this point, is an unrestricted free agent, which makes it all the more curious that the Niners would insist he’s their guy. Most teams only discuss players under contract.

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Posted on: April 29, 2011 7:48 pm
 

49ers make a move for Colin Kaepernick

Posted by Will Brinson

NEW YORK -- A pile of teams spent the first half of the NFL Draft's first round reaching for quarterbacks; the second day started much the same way with Andy Dalton going to Cincinnati and the San Francisco 49ers making a big-time move up the draft board to nab Nevada Colin Kaepernick.

As soon as the details of the Niners trade was announced (San Fran gave up their second-round pick, their fourth-round pick and their fifth-round pick for Denver's second-rounder), it was obvious that San Francisco had a pretty clear-cut guy they were targeting; otherwise they wouldn't give up such a bounty just to jump up nine spots in the second round.

It also gives off the notion that San Fran would've been content with both Dalton and Kaepernick, but when Cincy pulled trigger, Jim Harbaugh looked at the Titans and Redskins sitting above him, and knew he needed to make a move.
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So he did.

Kaepernick was our Chad Reuter's top-ranked quarterback on the board heading into the second round, and he makes sense as a guy that Harbugh can bring in to replace Alex Smith should the de facto starter a) return and b) only last a year in his new coach's system.

The only thing that's shocking about the move, however, is that it debunks any potential rumors that the 49ers might be interested in holding off and doing their best to nab Andrew Luck in next year's draft.

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Posted on: April 27, 2011 1:11 pm
 

Hot Routes 4.27.11 so are we locked out or not?

Hot Routes

Posted by Andy Benoit

Posted on: April 27, 2011 9:11 am
Edited on: April 28, 2011 11:57 am
 

Ranking the NFL's 32 final draft decision makers

Posted by Andy Benoit

There are many ways a person could rank the top draft decision makers for each NFL team. Among those criteria: team history of success; number of first-rounders who have panned out; the number of late-round gems discovered; consistency of the players developed within the organization.

But without a scientific formula, sometimes the best rankings can derive from a standard eyeball/smell/gut test. Thus, here is a ranking of all 32 “final draft decision makers” in the NFL.

Lists like these tend to attract criticism and rebuttals. Have at it -- this is meant to be a discussion starter.

1. Bill Polian, ColtsB. Polian (US Presswire0
Sticks unwaverlingly to his formula: invest in a small handful of elite skill position players on offense and playmakers on defense, and then surround them with low cost youngsters who fit your scheme. In the 2000s he led the Indianapolis Colts to a Super Bowl win and annual division titles. In the '90s he ushered in the most successful expansion franchise in NFL history (Carolina Panthers) and oversaw the four-time AFC Champion Buffalo Bills.

2. Kevin Colbert, Steelers
Doesn't get much attention because A) he rarely does interviews; B) the Steelers are often drafting late in the first round and C) he's almost always looking two or three years ahead when drafting players, which minimizes the hype of Pittsburgh's rookie class. These methods have brought in guys like LaMarr Woodley, Troy Polamalu, Lawrence Timmons, Mike Wallace and Maurkice Pouncey to name five.

3. Ted Thompson, Packers
It took major intestinal fortitude to pull the trigger on Aaron Rodgers when Brett Favre was still on the roster and many believed the 2005 Packers were in position to "win now." Virtually the entire Packers Super Bowl roster this past year was comprised of players who were drafted by the organization and in their prime. That's perfect planning paying off.

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4. Bill Belichick, Patriots
The best trader of picks the NFL has seen since Jimmy Johnson. Like an alchemist, he regularly turns one late first-round selection into two or three solid contributors who fit the Patriots' ever-changing system.

5. Mickey Loomis, Saints
Is batting about .750 with his high-round draft picks, and has managed to snag several small-school gems in middle to late rounds (See: Jahri Evans, Marques Colston, Jimmy Graham, who was primarily a basketball player at Miami).

6. Ozzie Newsome, Ravens
Simply has a knack for connecting on stars. His latest include Haloti Ngata, Terrell Suggs, Ray Rice and (maybe) Michael Oher and Joe Flacco. Because of good mid-round drafting, depth is generally a plus for this club. The only true black eye on Newsome’s resume is the Kyle Boller pick, for which Brian Billick shares equal blame.

7. A.J. Smith, Chargers
Supposedly not the most likeable guy in the room, but that's in part because he has a gift for ruthlessly getting the most out of his resources. Part of that is replacing players a year too soon rather than a year too late.

8. Andy Reid, Eagles
Aside from Green Bay, Philadelphia is the only NFC team that has consistently drafted for the future first and the present second. Because of that, the Eagles are able to stay afloat when they do miss on a high-round pick.

9. Mike Holmgren, Browns
Jury is still out in Cleveland, obviously. But a person's track record has to count for something, right? And Holmgren's is pretty good.

10. Mike Tannenbaum, Jets
Home runs (D’Brickashaw Ferguson, Nick Mangold, Darrelle Revis -- who was a grand slam -- and possibly Mark Sanchez) outnumber strikeouts (Kellen Clemens, Vernon Gholston). Willing to be aggressive and trade up to get his guy. So far, it's worked well.

11. Jerry Reese, Giants
Has done a superb job building off the foundation that Ernie Accorsi put in place.

12. Thomas Dimitroff, FalconsT. Dimitroff (US Presswire)
Ex-New England front office executive instantly turned the rudderless post-Vick Falcons around by nailing the Matt Ryan pick. Has since retooled the offense with solid role players and upgraded the speed on defense.

13. Mark Dominik, Buccaneers
Made the bold commitment for the Bucs to get younger on both sides of the ball. Already, those young players have turned out a 10-6 record, putting the team a year or two ahead of schedule. The decision to draft Josh Freeman one day could lead to a Lombardi Trophy.

14. Marty Hurney, Panthers
For the most part, Panthers have been consistently competitive for 10 years despite the absence of a star quarterback. How? Solid offensive line (Jordan Gross and Ryan Kalil were successful high draft picks), good running game (DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart were two more successful high picks) and a staunch defense (Jon Beason has more than lived up to first-round billing).

15. Scott Pioli, Chiefs
Was an integral part of the Patriots dynasty and is showing a knack for finding players who fit the Chiefs’ scheme.

16. Billy Devaney, Rams
Has not been at the helm long; will soar up this list if his 2011 draft class turns out to be anything like his 2010 class.

17. Mike Shanahan, Redskins
A nod to experience more than anything. Shanahan The GM has never been as good as Shanahan The Coach. But Shanahan The GM has still been around the block a time or two and knows exactly what he wants. Having Bruce Allen handle some of the technical GM duties is helpful.

18. Ken Whisenhunt/Rod Graves, Cardinals
Only one player they've taken in the first three rounds has not contributed (Cody Brown). The rest all have been part of a club that has won postseason games two of the past three seasons.

19. Jerry Angelo, Bears
Seems to have a slightly better feel for the veteran market than the rookie market, but we're nitpicking. Has done a fine job finding players who fit Lovie Smith’s Cover 2 defense. Offensively, he’s building around Jay Cutler (for whom he traded significant picks to get).

20. Mike Reinfeldt, Titans
The assumption is he occasionally has to cater to the demands of Bud Adams, which could be a challenging wrinkle to his job. Overall, has constructed a deep roster and seen a few gambles pay off (notably Chris Johnson in 2007).M. Reinfeldt (US Presswire)

21. Rick Spielman, Vikings
Too many busts early in his tenure, though some of that was beyond Minnesota's control (Kenechi Udeze's health issues, Erasmus James' injuries). While forcing a few picks into the lineup, the Vikings also have gotten their money's worth from top picks Percy Harvin, Sidney Rice and Adrian Peterson (considered a risk because of injury problems at Oklahoma).

22. Jerry Jones, Cowboys
Yes, the Cowboys have a talented group. But a bulk of that talent was acquired when Bill Parcells was around.

23. Martin Mayhew, Lions
Still waiting to see what becomes of the major investments on offense (outlook appears good but still not certain).

24. Jeff Ireland, Dolphins
Brand new in his role as top decision maker. It wouldn't be fair to judge him based on what his former boss (Parcells) did.

25. Gene Smith, Jaguars
In two years has shown willingness to rebuild in bunches by using back-to-back draft picks on the same position. In that time, not a lot has changed in Jacksonville's bottom line, though there is legitimate optimism about this franchise's direction.

26. Pete Carroll, Seahawks
It's way too early to judge. His first draft class looks like it could turn out to be spectacular at the top (Russell Okung has star traits, Earl Thomas has shown flashes and many like Walter Thurmond) but very few men have successfully worn the GM hat while coaching.

27. Trent Baalke, 49ers
The Niners' draft record during his two years as VP of Player Personnel was iffy, but he wasn't the final decision-maker then. His first draft class will likely prove to have produced long-term starters with the first four picks (Mike Iupati, Anthony Davis, Taylor Mays and NaVorro Bowman). Iupati, in fact, seems destined to be a perennial Pro Bowler.T. Baalke (US Presswire)

28. Buddy Nix, Bills
Bills are full of overachievers, but part of overachieving is not being very talented. The Aaron Maybin air ball in 2009 puts a damper on what was otherwise a solid draft class. But Nix, a national scout at the time, wasn't fully responsible for that draft class. His 2010 draft class is off to a slow start but its still in the judgment phase.

29. Rick Smith, Texans
Houston is overhauling its defensive scheme after spending five years investing first-round picks on players who were supposed to fit that scheme.

30. Mike Brown, Bengals
He would be a great fantasy drafter because he always takes the best player. Problem is, in the real draft, team chemistry needs to factor into your decisions. Those "best players" Brown takes are often available because of character red flags.

31. John Elway, Broncos
No track record to evaluate.

32. Al Davis, Raiders
One apparently solid draft (2010) does not erase years of atrocious ones.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com