San Francisco 49ers: Daniel Kilgore

Examining the San Francisco 49ers' roster:

QUARTERBACKS (2)

Because of heavy competition elsewhere, the 49ers will likely only carry two quarterbacks. They finished last season that way. The competition will be to see if undrafted rookie Kory Faulkner can take McLeod Bethel-Thompson's spot on the practice squad.

RUNNING BACKS (5)

The fact that the 49ers drafted Hyde in the second round and Lattimore is healthy means some tough decisions will have to be made. Hunter is too valuable to let go. That means 2012 second-round pick LaMichael James will have difficulty making the roster.

WIDE RECEIVERS (6)

The 49ers are so much deeper here this year than last. That means they will likely have to keep six receivers. Lloyd may look good and Patton has too much potential to give up on. That means it could be tough for Kassim Osgood to make it even though he is a special teams cog.

TIGHT ENDS (3)

If Davis ends his holdout, I can't see the 49ers keeping more than three tight ends because of the glut at receiver. Unless Garrett Celek has a big camp, he may be in trouble. Carrier intrigues the 49ers because of his size and speed.

OFFENSIVE LINE (8)

Assuming Boone ends his holdout, this is a pretty nice group of eight players. It's improved from last year. A solid veteran like Adam Snyder and a promising youngster like Ryan Seymour will have trouble making the team.

DEFENSIVE LINE (9)

This is another power spot. It's deep. Players like Jerod-Eddie and Dial are too valuable to cut. Ramsey has looked good and I have a hunch the 49ers may like him too much to expose him to the waiver wire. That means Demarcus Dobbs could be in trouble.

LINEBACKERS (7)

Most teams carry six linebackers but the 49ers are stacked here, especially with NaVorro Bowman out for about half the season. Because fifth-round pick Lynch is promising he should make the roster. Dan Skuta is an excellent player, but there might not be any room for him. I could see him being one of those later-summer Trent Baalke trade specials because he has value.

CORNERBACKS (5)

This unit is in flux, but I see Johnson making it. Don't be surprised if there is some in-camp jockeying as the 49ers look for the best mix.

SAFETIES (5)

Ward, the 49ers' first-round pick, will play nickel cornerback as a rookie, but projects long term as a safety. Ventrone and Spillman should stick because they are great on special teams. Craig Dahl could be in trouble.

SPECIALISTS (3):

This group is set and it's excellent.
Now that the offseason portion of the year is over, let's take a look where each of the San Francisco 49ers' 12 draft picks stand heading into training camp, which starts July 24.

First round

Jimmie Ward: The nickel cornerback has been recovering from a foot injury. But he is expected to be fine once camp starts. He has been doing classroom work and the team is excited about him helping right away.

Second round

Carlos Hyde: The running back has shined out of the backfield as a runner and as receiver. The Ohio State product is likely to get a chance at playing time right away. He was considered a steal at No. 57 on draft night and is still looking like one.

Third round

Marcus Martin: The center from USC has been getting praise. Daniel Kilgore still has the edge to win the starting job, but I wouldn't be shocked if Martin takes it.

Chris Borland: The inside linebacker from Wisconsin was a tackling machine in college. The early 49ers' reviews are strong. He could get some playing time early with NaVorro Bowman recovering from a torn ACL.

Brandon Thomas: The guard from Clemson is expected to be out for the year as he recovers from an offseason knee injury.

Fourth round

Bruce Ellington: The speedy receiver from South Carolina was a star of the offseason. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick called his minicamp play “amazing.” The 49ers will likely find a role for him as a receiver and as a punt returner early.

Dontae Johnson: The cornerback from NC State will likely make the roster as depth. He is still a project.

Fifth round

Aaron Lynch: He earned the praise last week of coach Jim Harbaugh. He's a project, but the 49ers like him. He should make a stacked linebacking unit.

Keith Reaser: The cornerback is likely out for the year as he recovers from a 2013 torn ACL.

Sixth round

Ken Acker: The cornerback will have to have a strong camp to make the team.

Seventh round

Kaleb Ramsey: The defensive lineman from Boston College had a terrific minicamp. The defensive line is stacked, but if he plays well, he could sneak on the 53-man roster.

Trey Millard: The fullback is likely out for the year as he recovers from a torn ACL.
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Prior to the San Francisco 49ers' first mandatory minicamp practice, offensive coordinator Greg Roman said he was looking for sharp workouts.

The 49ers didn't exactly deliver.

There were plenty of drops in a mostly mundane workout. However, I wouldn't exactly say it's cause for alarm. It's June and a lot of players were held out or limited. This is not high-intensity times.

It's a time to continue to work on rhythm before the team takes a month break before starting training camp.

The 49ers worked a lot of red zone offense Tuesday. They often stalled in the red zone last season, settling for field goals.

Roman said Tuesday he hopes to see an evolved offense in 2014. With a more experienced Colin Kaepernick, deeper receiving core and rookie running back Carlos Hyde, Roman likes the potential changes.

"I think it's fair to make the statement that it's a different offense, 2014. Because we've got some new guys in," Roman said. "I think it's definitely evolved from (from when he arrived to San Francisco with coach Jim Harbaugh in 2011) and it'll probably change a little bit this year."

In other camp notes:
  • Hyde and rookie receiver Bruce Ellington each had their moments Tuesday. Roman praised Hyde for his football knowledge. "Carlos, since he got here from the draft, really impressed me as a guy that football just makes sense to him," Roman said. "If you could just tell him what to do, and you don't have to tell him too much. And that's a beautiful thing in a running back because they have a lot of adjustments to make and protection, etc."
  • Several veterans such as running back Frank Gore and Justin Smith sat out practices as they did in the voluntary practices. It's just saving older players wear-and-tear. Receivers Michael Crabtree and Stevie Johnson didn't work in team drills as the team is being cautious.
  • Receiver Brandon Lloyd continued to make some nice catches as he continues to make a push to make the 53-man roster.
  • Roman was complimentary of young tight ends Vance McDonald and Derek Carrier as they get time with Vernon Davis holding out. McDonald is set to get the most time if Davis stays away. The 2013 second-round pick had some drops Tuesday, which was a problem in his rookie season.
  • Fifth-round pick Aaron Lynch, who will be a pass-rusher, didn't practice because of a hamstring injury. Seventh-round pick Kaleb Ramsey at defensive tackle looked solid. He will be interesting to watch in training camp and in the preseason.
  • Harbaugh maintained that he thinks Gore can play three more years. He is 31 and entering the final year of his contract.
  • Blaine Gabbert has the edge to be to Kaepernick's backup. Harbaugh heaped praise on him. "Very impressed with Blaine mentally, physically -- all attributes that you'd like to see in a quarterback. He's been very good, very solid. (He's) picked up everything very quickly. It's going well. Everything is progressing well. I think you'll watch it when you have a chance to see it today and look at it for yourself. In my eye, it looks very good."
  • Harbaugh said he is optimistic right tackle Anthony Davis will be ready for the start of training camp. He had shoulder surgery in April.
  • Running back Marcus Lattimore looked good and he is working full-go. He missed all of last season as he recovered from a torn ACL he suffered at South Carolina in 2012.
  • In a hint third-round pick Marcus Martin could push Daniel Kilgore for the starting center job, Roman heaped high praise on the rookie. "I think Marcus has done a really good job coming in as a rookie. The center position, there's so much that a center has to do in this league week-to-week," Roman said. "There's just so many different adjustments and whatnot. He's done a really good job so far against our defense, not only physically, but mentally as well."
  • Roman said he is happy with the play of Joe Looney at right guard. He is working with the starters with Alex Boone holding out.
While Vernon Davis has been out front publicly with his thoughts about his contract, Alex Boone has been not.

But make no mistake: Boone is steadfast in his stance. He is not reporting to the 49ers Tuesday in time for the mandatory minicamp without a new contract, according to a source close to the situation. The odds of a contract happening in the next day are near impossible.

Thus, Boone is poised to become a holdout. The 49ers can start fining Boone once he starts missing mandatory sessions.

Once Boone misses minicamp, the landscape will change. It will be a strong indication he will be willing to stay away from training camp, which starts in five weeks. Once a player stays away from minicamp, that’s a sign that the player is willing to take his holdout into the regular season.

The 49ers have Super Bowl aspirations. They don’t need distractions like a holdout. It will be a daily media topic if Boone becomes an official holdout.

More important than avoiding a distraction, the 49ers need as many of their top players available as possible. Boone is a key player on the offensive line. With Anthony Davis recovering from a shoulder injury and Daniel Kilgore and Marcus Martin vying for the center job, the offensive line may have some rough spots in the summer. With Boone away, the 49ers will continue to go with Joe Looney in Boone’s spot. Looney is a solid young player, but he is not Boone.

Ultimately, what matters is if Boone is with the 49ers Week 1 at Dallas.
The San Francisco 49ers will have their mandatory minicamp from Tuesday-Thursday. Here’s some things to watch for:

Davis
Boone
Will Davis and Boone show? Both tight end Vernon Davis and guard Alex Boone have stayed away from the voluntary portion of the offseason. That’s over. Starting Tuesday, everything the 49ers do as a team is mandatory and each player can be fined if they aren’t present. Davis said he expects to be at the minicamp. Boone has not said a word publicly about his plans. However, I’ve gotten the sense Boone is prepared not to show up until he gets a new deal. If neither player is at practice Tuesday, they will be holdouts and the stakes will change with their absences.

The cornerbacks: This is the biggest position of change. Carlos Rogers and Tarell Brown are gone. Chris Culliver will start, but he is still working back from a torn ACL that kept him out all of last season. He should be fine for camp, but don’t expect him to go full-go in this camp. First-round pick Jimmie Ward is set to be the nickelback, but he is coming off a foot injury. He should be ready for training camp. A player of note in the minicamp is free-agent pickup Chris Cook. He will be in the rotation. Cook, who signed from Minnesota, has ideal size. He has looked good in the OTA sessions.

Offensive line: This unit, the pride and joy of the 49ers, should be fine in the long run, but it’s a little rough right now. Boone has been absent. Right tackle Anthony Davis is recovering from a shoulder injury and won’t be there until camp. Daniel Kilgore is taking over from Jonathan Goodwin and trying to hold off rookie Marcus Martin at center. Again, things will settle down, but don’t expect a well-oiled unit this week.

Passing game: Most of the receivers have been out during the voluntary sessions, mostly as precautions or for minor injuries. The passing game was rough in the OTA session that was open to the media last Tuesday. I’d expect to see more receivers during this camp, which is vital to help rhythm with quarterback Colin Kaepernick heading into training camp.

Inside linebackers: NaVorro Bowman is expected to be out until midseason as he recovers from a torn ACL. Michael Wilhoite has the inside shot to start for Bowman, but he will have to hold off Nick Moody and third-round pick Chris Borland.

Pass-rushers: Aldon Smith may face an NFL suspension. The 49ers need some extra pass-rush help. Keys to watch in camp is defensive lineman Tank Carradine, who missed all of last season with a torn ACL, and second-year player Corey Lemonier, who looks like he’s added several pounds of muscle. The 49ers would love to see these two young players show a burst in this camp.

Marcus Lattimore: The 49ers are slowly bringing along the 2013 fourth-round draft pick. He has done some things in the OTA session, including showing nice hands out of the backfield. I wouldn’t expect Lattimore to go full-go in this camp, but the 49ers want to see continued comfort, speed and confidence from Lattimore, whom they hope can help this season.
As training camp creeps closer, let’s take a look at what has gone on so far with the 49ers this offseason:

Returning free agents: Receiver Anquan Boldin, kicker Phil Dawson, cornerback Eric Wright, receiver Kassim Osgood, cornerback Perrish Cox.

2015 free agents extended: Center Daniel Kilgore, fullback Bruce Miller.

Departed free agents: Safety Donte Whitner (Cleveland), cornerback Tarell Brown (Oakland), running back Anthony Dixon (Buffalo), receiver Mario Manningham (Giants), quarterback Colt McCoy (Redskins), center Jonathan Goodwin (Saints).

Released: Cornerback Carlos Rogers. He signed with Oakland.

Free-agent additions: Safety Antoine Bethea (Colts), cornerback Chris Cook (Vikings), receiver Brandon Lloyd (last with Patriots in 2012), quarterback Josh Johnson (released by Cincinnati), linebacker Blake Costanzo (Bears).

Acquired in trade: Quarterback Blaine Gabbert from Jaguars; tackle Jonathan Martin from Miami, receiver Stevie Johnson from Buffalo.

Starting lineup changes: Bethea for Whitner; likely Kilgore for Goodwin, Chris Culliver for Brown.
The San Francisco 49ers no longer have any remaining free agents.

ESPN NFL Nation reporter Mike Triplett reported that the New Orleans Saints have agreed to terms with center Jonathan Goodwin. Goodwin was the last of the 49ers' free agents. The 49ers had no interest in bringing back Goodwin, who started every game for the 49ers the past three years.

The team signed backup Daniel Kilgore to a three-year extension this offseason and drafted USC’s Marcus Martin in the third round. They will compete for the starting job in training camp with Kilgore getting the first crack and Martin considered the long-term favorite.

Goodwin, 35, played for the Saints from 2006-10 before spending three seasons with the 49ers. Goodwin was steady on the field and popular in the locker room. But the 49ers felt like his play was starting to slip in his advanced age.
We are looking at best-case scenarios for mid-round draft picks of the San Francisco 49ers.

Player: Marcus Martin

Position: C

Round: 3

Earliest he could have big role: Week 1.

Why is there an opportunity? Jonathan Goodwin, who started the past three years, was not brought back in free agency.

Who is in his way? Daniel Kilgore. The 49ers like him. They gave him an extension this offseason and think he is capable of starting.

Current thoughts: The edge goes to Kilgore. But if Martin can quickly adjust to the NFL and he has a strong preseason, and Kilgore struggles, I can see the 49ers going to Martin early. I expect him to become the full-time center at some point barring a big struggle.
Weekend mail call:

Yosh from Cypress, California, wants to know if I think the San Francisco 49ers’ brass regrets not moving up and taking Colin Kaepernick in the 2011 draft so they could give him a 2015 option.

Bill Williamson: Certainly, right now, the 49ers would rather they took Kaepernick in the first round. But I think it is unrealistic to think that way in the draft. You are looking for value at the moment. The 49ers took Kaepernick with the No. 36 overall pick. It was the fourth pick of the second round. It was a great value then. I think that’s still how you have to look at it.

Mikey from San Jose wants to know if I think Chris Culliver will start at cornerback.

BW: It appears that way. The 49ers really like him on the field. Yes, there are off-field concerns, but the 49ers are looking at him as a starter. If he plays well and he stays clean off the field, he could get a contract extension before next season.

Derek from San Francisco wants to know if I think third-round pick Marcus Martin could start right away.

BW: I think he has a shot. It might not be right away, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Martin overtook Daniel Kilgore at some point during the season. Kilgore is a nice player, but he is not proven as a starter. Martin has big skills. If he looks good in camp, I could see him getting a chance early. There is no doubt he is the long-term answer.
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- The pick: Marcus Martin, C, USC

My take: I wouldn’t be surprised if Martin becomes a starter as a rookie. The 49ers have Daniel Kilgore, whom they gave him a modest contract extension, but Martin can be a superior player. If Kilgore is great in camp, he will keep the job for now, but Martin is the future.

Muench’s thoughts: Because ESPN draft experts Mel Kiper and Todd McShay often had Martin to the 49ers in mock drafts, I spoke to Scouts Inc.'s Steve Muench about Martin recently. Muench on Martin: "Great size and athleticism. He’s a bright player. However, some scouts question his toughness. Still, many scouts think he can be an instant starter."

What’s next: Three more picks tonight -- No. 77, No. 94 and No. 100. Cornerbacks and receivers, anyone?

Ranking draft needs

May, 2, 2014
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With the NFL draft looming in less than a week, let's break down the San Francisco 49ers' draft needs in order of importance.

Cornerback

Why: It's the only position on the field where the 49ers currently have a hole. Tarell Brown departed in free agency and Carlos Rogers was cut. They both ended up in Oakland. The 49ers could easily take multiple players at this spot. If the right players are added, the 49ers could bring in a starter and a nickel cornerback. At the very least, one player who will see significant immediate playing time should be added.

When area will likely be addressed: The 49ers easily could use a first-round pick here.

Receiver

Why: The 49ers need more speed at the position. They also have to develop a young player. One starter, Anquan Boldin, is 33, and the other, Michael Crabtree, is entering the final year of his contract.

When area will likely be addressed: The 49ers will likely add a receiver in the first or second round.

Pass-rusher

Why: Aldon Smith's off-field issues have made this a potential need position in recent weeks.

When area will likely be addressed: The impact pass-rushers will likely be gone before the 49ers want to address this area, but if they identify a player who they think fits their system, I could see the 49ers using a third-round pick at this spot.

Interior offensive line:

Why: Daniel Kilgore is going to get the chance to be the starting center, but he is unproven. The 49ers might want some immediate competition. Also, Mike Iupati is entering the final year of his contract. More youth could be needed at guard.

When area will likely be addressed: ESPN draft experts Mel Kiper and Todd McShay have linked USC's Marcus Martin center to the 49ers in the second round in mock draft. I'm not sure the 49ers will address this area so early, but I can see the 49ers using picks on a center and a guard, perhaps both on Day 3.

Inside linebacker

Why: NaVorro Bowman is expected to be out for about half the season while recovering from a torn ACL and Patrick Willis is 29. It wouldn't hurt to bring in a youngster.

When area will likely be addressed: I could see the 49ers looking here in the fourth or fifth round.

Quarterback

Why: The 49ers are interested in a long-term backup for Colin Kaepernick.

When area will likely be addressed: I think the 49ers could use the final pick in the third round on a quarterback or perhaps use their fourth-round pick at the position.

Safety

Why: The 49ers need some youth and depth here.

When area will likely be addressed: I think if the right player is available and the 49ers feel comfortable about other positions they addressed, a safety could be nabbed in the third round.

Defensive line

Why: It's not a huge need area, but teams can never have enough defensive lineman.

When area will likely be addressed: There are some scenarios where the 49ers could use a premium pick here if the draft falls that way. But there are other scenarios where a mid-round pick is the highest priority they give the spot.

Will other positions be addressed? The 49ers don't have huge needs elsewhere, but they have studied and visited players at virtually every position, so it wouldn't be a shock if the 49ers added a running back or perhaps a tight end in the late rounds.
One player who might be worth playing attention to leading up to the May 8-10 NFL draft is USC center Marcus Martin.

Both ESPN draft analysts Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay have Martin pegged to the San Francisco 49ers in recent mocks. They both had Martin going to the 49ers in the second round, where the team has two picks. Let’s take a closer look at Martin:

Size: 6-foot-3, 320 pounds

Experience: He moved to center in 2013 and played there for the first time. He was a starter at guard for his first two college seasons.

Known for: Great size and athleticism. He’s a bright player. However, some scouts question his toughness. Still, many scouts think he can be an instant starter.

Do 49ers need him? Daniel Kilgore, who just signed a three-year extension with the 49ers, will get the first crack to replace Jonathan Goodwin in the starting lineup. The 49ers are excited about Kilgore. However, if Kiper and McShay are right, Martin would certainly look like both an immediate and long-term option. Martin could also interest the 49ers because of his experience at guard. Mike Iupati is entering the final year of his contract, and it isn't a sure thing the 49ers will re-sign him.
The last remaining San Francisco 49ers free agent could potentially have a new pairing.

lastname
Goodwin
Center Jonathan Goodwin visited the New Orleans Saints on Wednesday. There has not been an agreement, but it makes sense for the Saints to sign the veteran. He played for the Saints from 2006-10 before spending the three seasons with the 49ers.

The 49ers have not expressed interest in re-signing the 35-year-old Goodwin this offseason, with Daniel Kilgore planned as the starter. The team could also draft a center, so the only way Goodwin could be in the picture in San Francisco is down the road if the 49ers are not happy with their options.

Based on Wednesday's visit with the Saints, Goodwin may not be an option for much longer.

Updated offseason scorecard

April, 16, 2014
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Free agency continues and the San Francisco 49ers have been busy making roster changes. Let’s take a look at what has gone on so far:

Returning free agents: Receiver Anquan Boldin, kicker Phil Dawson, cornerback Eric Wright, receiver Kassim Osgood, cornerback Perrish Cox.

2015 free agents extended: Center Daniel Kilgore, fullback Bruce Miller.

Departed free agents: Safety Donte Whitner (Cleveland), cornerback Tarell Brown (Oakland), running back Anthony Dixon (Buffalo), receiver Mario Manningham (Giants), quarterback Colt McCoy (Redskins).

Released: Cornerback Carlos Rogers. He signed with Oakland.

Free agent addition: Safety Antoine Bethea (Colts), Cornerback Chris Cook (Vikings), Receiver Brandon Lloyd (last with Patriots in 2012).

Acquired in trade: Quarterback Blaine Gabbert from Jaguars; tackle Jonathan Martin from Miami.

Reportedly interested in: Receiver Josh Morgan (Washington free agent), but there hasn’t been any movement in the past several weeks, and the Lloyd signing likely ends any Morgan thoughts.

Remaining free agent: Center Jonathan Goodwin.

Starting lineup changes: Bethea for Whitner; likely Kilgore for Goodwin, Chris Culliver or upcoming draft pick for Brown.
ESPN.com columnist Ashley Fox believes the 49ers have to follow the example of NFC West rival Seattle. The Seahawks dealt with off-field issues last season, persevered and won the Super Bowl. The 49ers are dealing with several issues this offseason. Fox thinks leadership is the key.

Would Colin Kaepernick be the No. 1 pick in this draft ? Take a look at what some league insiders think.

Daniel Kilgore, who is expected to be the 49ers’ starting center, was cleared of public intoxication charges in his Tennessee hometown, CSN Bay Area reported. Kilgore was arrested in January. He was the first of three 49ers to be arrested this offseason.

The Sacramento Bee reported Colorado receiver Paul Richardson will visit the 49ers. The speedy receiver would be a target for San Francisco with the No. 56 or No. 61 pick in the second round.

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