A few odds and ends from Vernon Davis’ extension that I didn’t get into the story for the newspaper: • Singletary on if the big money would change Davis: “He’s one of the hardest-working guys on the team, if not the hardest-working guy on the team. What’s going to change? He was like this the […]
Aubrayo Franklin may not be in game shape, but he sounds ready to go 15 rounds.
Pretty soon, nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin may not be the 317-pound bear in the room.
The 49ers coaches have tried to focus on “the guys who are here” since training camp began Aug. 1, but discussion has periodically returned to the guy who isn’t – Franklin, who has yet to sign his franchise tender and suit up with his teammates in 2010.
That should change Saturday. As first reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Franklin is expected to fly into San Francisco on Saturday and sign his one-year, $7.003 million contract.
The 49ers’ veterans were supposed to check in between 8 and 9:30 this morning. The period came and went with no sign of NT Aubrayo Franklin, the Niners’ unhappy franchise player.
The team was not yet marking Franklin as officially absent, with meetings set to begin at 10:30. But as training camp gets set for kickoff with an afternoon practice tomorrow, it is looking less and less likely that the eighth-year veteran will begin the summer campaign with the 49ers. He would net about $7 million by signing his franchise tender, but presumably wants a long-term deal instead.
The 49ers had a busy and encouraging Friday morning, signing all four of their top draft choices to contracts by 10:30 a.m.
Tackle Anthony Davis, the No. 13 overall pick, signed a five-year deal worth as much as $26.5 million, with nearly $16 million of it guaranteed (as first reported by ESPN). Guard Mike Iupati, taken four picks later, bagged a five-year deal of his own that will bring a maximum of $18.25 million, with $10.8 million guaranteed (first reported by NFL Network).
Safety Taylor Mays (second round) and linebacker NaVorro Bowman (third) each signed a four-year contract. Money figures were not immediately available.
Forty-Niners rookies are supposed to report to Santa Clara tomorrow, and still no word on the top four – T Anthony Davis, G Mike Iupati, S Taylor Mays and LB Navorro Bowman – signing contracts.
Very few first-round selections have signed yet, but second- and third-rounders have been using up a lot of ink in the past 48 hours. And because of those deals, I’m predicting that Bowman, a third-round pick out of Penn State, will secure a four-year contract worth a maximum of $3.3 million, with a signing bonus of $700,000.
I posted earlier on Manny Lawson’s return to the fold. Here is the entire transcript of Lawson’s interview session, which lasted just under four minutes. It probably would have gone on longer, but he had to hustle out of the locker room to a 2:30 meeting. Lawson’s a good talker and, apparently, a thinker, so I thought you might enjoy the full interview.
Manny Lawson finally spoke today, and there was little fire, no brimstone, and certainly no militant demands for more money. The fifth-year linebacker supposedly is upset with his contract, which calls for a base salary of $625,000 this year, but his feelings sounded more like mild disapproval during his first discussion with reporters this offseason.
Asked if he is dissatisfied with the contract, Lawson answered: “Not dissatisfied with it, but you know, everybody wants a new contract. I wanted to be here. I wanted to be a San Francisco 49er. I would like a new contract, yes.”
Manny Lawson, the 49ers’ disgruntled linebacker, is in Santa Clara for the team’s three-day minicamp. But that doesn’t mean everything is hearts-and-flowers on this front.
Lawson remains unhappy with his $625,000 salary for 2010, the final year of his contract, and his long-term plans are clouded.
“The 49ers are going to do what they feel is in their best interest, and Manny will do what’s in his best interest,” the player’s representative, Jonathan Feinsod, said early this afternoon. “Manny would like to be a 49er for the rest of his career, but that’s obviously not the 49ers’ plan right now.”
The 49ers’ minicamp warms up at 1:45 tomorrow afternoon with media access in the locker room. The question: Who, exactly, will be in that locker room?
As I mentioned yesterday, there is no word yet as to whether professionally disgruntled NT Aubrayo Franklin or LB Manny Lawson will be here. The issue was not resolved today, at least not by coach Mike Singletary.
When I asked Singletary whether Franklin or Lawson would show, he answered: “As far as I know, I have heard that Aubrayo will not be here, which does not bother me one bit. If Manny is not here, does not bother me one bit. Those guys are working.”
The 49ers will assemble Thursday afternoon, just as they will Wednesday morning, but the vibe will be a little different. Thursday marks the start of a three-day minicamp. Attendance is mandatory, and it will be very interesting to see who is here.
Of the four defensive regulars who have skipped voluntary practices this offseason, cornerbacks Shawntae Spencer and Nate Clements are both expected to arrive Thursday. They simply prefer to work out on their own this time of year.
The other two, nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin and outside linebacker Manny Lawson, are the big question marks this week.
Enough with machinations of the guys in suits! Here, finally, are some random notes, observations, little hairlines and drops-and-rolls from the fourth and final day of OTAs this week:
• Rookie RB Anthony Dixon did not participate in practice. Coach Mike Singletary: “Some of these young guys, we’ve pushed them pretty hard so far. Anthony is a guy where everything he does, he does full speed, whether it’s running in the morning, running after practice, running the plays during the drills. I just think that he ran out of gas a little bit.”
Brash. Outspoken. Controversial. Vernon Davis has been all three on occasion, but the Pro Bowl tight end is playing it cool when it comes to getting a long-term contract extension from the 49ers. Davis was a guest panelist at an Art Impact panel discussion at the de Young Museum’s Koret Auditorium this evening, and he talked a little football before and after the event.
With Patrick Willis locked up through 2016, TE Vernon Davis – whose contract expires after this season – logically figures as the next Niner in line for a big payday. He’s a vital cog in the offense, and Davis is confident he can reach an agreement with his current team. He sent the following tweet a couple hours ago: “We got plenty of time y’all I’ll sign an extension soon I’m sure don’t worry I’m in 100%.”
But how big of a contract will Davis command?
The 49ers last week placed the franchise tag on nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin. It wasn’t exactly a novel concept around the NFL, as three other teams had the same idea.