49ers move Bowman to PUP, Lattimore to NFI

The 49ers just announced that they waived Jewel Hampton, David Reed, Devon Wylie, McLeod Bethel-Thompson, Kion Wilson, D.J. Campbell, Kevin Greene and Colton Schmidt. Other roster moves: Marcus Lattimore, Brandon Thomas, Keith Reaser and Trey Millard were moved to the NFI list. Blake Costanzo was released from IR. NaVorro Bowman, Garrett Celek and Kaleb Ramsey were moved to the PUP list. Players on the NFI list and the PUP list will…

August 25, 2014

49ers’ backup plan stuck in reverse

This is my Monday column. Trent Baalke has to be swallowing hard this morning. Blaine Gabbert, the quarterback Baalke acquired to back up Colin Kaepernick, has a passer rating of 17.6 through two exhibition games. Trading for Blaine Gabbert was Baalke’s worst decision as an NFL general manager, worse than his decision to draft A.J. Jenkins or to trade for Jon Baldwin or to invest in a red-shirt draft choice…

August 18, 2014

Training camp report: Colin Kaepernick misses the mark

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me at the 49ers’ second non-padded practice of training camp. THE GOOD 1. Brandon Lloyd. Made a 20-yard catch near the sideline during an 11-on-11 team drill. Colin Kaepernick threw the pass high. Lloyd jumped and caught the ball and got both feet inbounds. 2. Stevie Johnson. Beat Chris Culliver for a 15-yard catch during a seven-on-seven drill. Johnson sold the deep…

July 25, 2014

OTA Notes: Ellington beats Johnson, Patton beats Brock, Brooks beats Kaepernick

SANTA CLARA — Here’s what stood out to me at Wednesday’s mini-camp. THE GOOD 1. Bruce Ellington — The only receiver who caught a deep pass. During one-on-one drills, Ellington ran deep against rookie cornerback Dontae Johnson. McLeod Bethel-Thompson threw a perfect deep pass. Ellington jumped up and caught the ball over Johnson, who is five inches taller than Ellington. 2. Quinton Patton — Was two-for-two against Tramaine Brock during…

June 18, 2014

OTA Notes: Kaepernick misses open receivers, Lloyd impresses Harbaugh and Willis, Johnson beats Johnson for a TD, and more

SANTA CLARA – This is what stood out to me at Tuesday’s OTA. THE GOOD 1. Brandon Lloyd: Best receiver on the field by far, although Michael Crabtree, Anquan Boldin, Vernon Davis, Stevie Johnson and Quinton Patton weren’t there. Lloyd made the catch of the day. He was running deep toward sideline and Blaine Gabbert threw the ball behind him. Lloyd jumped, twisted, caught the ball and landed both feet…

June 3, 2014

49ers’ QB depth a puzzle for the preseason

This is my Saturday column on the 49ers’ five quarterbacks. SANTA CLARA – Five 49ers quarterbacks. Only three can make the team. Which three will it be? We know Colin Kaepernick will make the team and start unless he breaks his leg or starts missing receivers by 30 yards and sailing passes into the stands. That leaves two spots for four quarterbacks – 24-year-old former first round pick Blaine Gabbert,…

May 17, 2014

McLeod Bethel-Thompson Q&A

I interviewed 49ers’ third-string quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson over the phone last week. Here is the transcript. Q: Which colleges offered you scholarships when you were coming out of high school? BETHEL-THOMPSON: When I came out of high school, I was convinced I was going to Stanford. I didn’t know the recruiting process very well at all. I committed to Stanford without them committing to me. I went through much of…

April 28, 2014

Cam or Kap? Still a tough call

Here is my Thursday column on the Cam-Kap conundrum. SANTA CLARA – “Merrill Feuerborn was adamant that we had to get Cam Newton and he was the future of the NFL,” Jim Harbaugh said at a recent press conference. Who in the world is Merrill Feuerborn? He is Harbaugh’s father-in-law. “You’ve got to give him credit, he saw it,” said Harbaugh, grinning. “I think the whole football world saw it…

November 7, 2013

Harbaugh on Bethel-Thompson: “Very good arm strength, really smart.”

SANTA CLARA — Jim Harbaugh spoke in the media tent Friday afternoon. Here is a transcript courtesy of the 49ers.   You have a new quarterback. Why bring in QB McLeod Bethel-Thompson? “Really, always liked him. Always had a plan for him to be here. He just went to Minnesota after the first year. So, now we’re reconnected. It aligned and we had a chance to get him and put…

October 11, 2013

Bethel-Thompson: “I’m excited about what I’ve done and I’m also excited for how much more I can improve.”

SANTA CLARA — McLeod Bethel-Thompson spoke at his locker Thursday afternoon. Here is a transcript. Q: Have things changed since you were here in 2011? BETHEL-THOMPSON: The stadium got bigger. That’s the first thing I noticed. That thing went up quick. It’s great to be back. I really loved my team here learning from Harbaugh and Coach Roman and Coach Geep Chryst. It was awesome the first time around and…

October 10, 2013

Roman says he likes Bethel-Thompson’s “demeanor” and “release”

SANTA CLARA — Greg Roman spoke in the media tent Thursday afternoon. Here is a transcript courtesy of the 49ers.   Opening comments: “Good afternoon. Big Division game this week. We kind of treat it as a one-game season so-to-speak against a very good defense. They’re one of the top teams in the NFL against the rush. When we turn on the film it’s pretty obvious why. They got a…

October 10, 2013

Report: 49ers sign Bethel-Thompson, cut Skelton

The Vikings recently waived quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson so they could place Josh Freeman on their roster. Brian McIntyre is reporting the 49ers have claimed Bethel-Thompson off waivers and cut quarterback John Skelton. Bethel-Thompson spent the 2011 training camp with the 49ers and may know their playbook. The 49ers cut Bethel-Thompson in 2011 for Scott Tolzien. Then in 2013, the 49ers cut Tolzien to sign B.J. Daniels. Then the 49ers cut…

October 9, 2013

8/3 Practice notes

SANTA CLARA – When you watch Aldon Smith work individually with defensive coordinator Vic Fangio, you think, “Here’s a rookie with a lot to learn.” Today Fangio worked with Smith on the blocking sleds, and he’d repeatedly stop Smith to work on his technique. Fangio wanted Smith to hit the sled, rip away to the right and square up. But Smith wasn’t squaring up, he was ending up sideways. Parys…

August 3, 2011