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Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Nnamdi Asomugha and 49ers? Fun stuff

By Mike Sando

Tuesday was excruciating for San Francisco 49ers fans hoping their team would dive into free agency with an eye toward upgrading the roster.

While several other teams made moves, the 49ers were among those subtracting. Their fans watched Takeo Spikes sign with San Diego. Beginning Wednesday, they watched David Baas, the team's only healthy center with significant experience at the position, agree to terms with the New York Giants. They heard about the Oakland Raiders targeting Dashon Goldson. They wondered whether nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin would return. They heard team president Jed York talk about planning for the long term.

Look, coach Jim Harbaugh might have a new five-year contract, but fans want indications the team is serious about winning now, not just building for a brighter future. After all, fans are paying for season tickets right now, as in today. In fairness, the upcoming season will not hinge on Spikes, Baas, Goldson or even Franklin, but neither is there any sense in creating new holes in a roster, or unnecessarily losing momentum.

News that the 49ers have interest in free-agent cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha could give anxious fans reassurance. Signing Asomugha would make sense on and off the field as the 49ers try to upgrade their pass defense while further gaining the public's goodwill in pursuit of a new stadium. After downplaying the likelihood of the 49ers' pursuing Asomugha, I ultimately concluded this was the one move San Francisco could make to build on the momentum created with Harbaugh's hiring.

The 49ers will have competition for Asomugha. Should be a fun ride here.