49ers

Foster seems to be pleading with 49ers medical staff: 'I want that candy'

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USATI

Foster seems to be pleading with 49ers medical staff: 'I want that candy'

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers will likely continue to monitor the health of rookie linebacker Reuben Foster up until 90 minutes before kickoff Sunday against Washington to determine whether to suit him up as one of the team’s 46 active players.

Foster has been inactive for the past four games due to a high right ankle sprain he sustained on the 11th play of the 49ers’ season opener against the Carolina Panthers.

While Foster has been unable to participate physically in practices, he has taken advantage of the opportunity to work on the mental aspects of the game, 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh said.

“He’s been out there every day, walk-through, and all that stuff,” Saleh said. “He’s still getting all those mental reps. And (Wednesday), he was sharp. Lined up. Got people lined up. It was really cool to see because he hasn’t actually taken a live rep since whenever he got hurt. To see the way he commanded the huddle and the way he got people lined up. It was very encouraging.”

Foster excitedly compared the possibility of his returning to action on Sunday to a kid in a candy store. He seemed to be pleading with the team's medical staff to clear him for takeoff.

“Hopefully, they see that child in me that wants some candy,” Foster said. “I want some candy. Let me have some candy.”

But the 49ers are also determined to be cautious with Foster, who figures to be a cornerstone of the team’s defense for many years. The 49ers had Foster rated as the No. 3 draft prospect on their board.

The club traded into the back end of the first round to select Foster with the No. 31 overall pick. If Foster is able to play on Sunday, he would not be expected to be on the field for every snap.

“We don’t plan on just throwing him back out there,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said on “49ers Game Plan,” which airs Saturday at 7:30 p.m. on NBC Bay Area.

“Any time you have a high-ankle sprain, those take a while to heal, which is why he’s missed a month. They also linger, too. It’s something you have to play through once it does heal. You’re going to feel it a little bit.”

49ers claim former Jaguars defensive lineman off waivers

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USATSI

49ers claim former Jaguars defensive lineman off waivers

The San Francisco 49ers' defensive line will have a new member coming off of the bye week.

The 49ers claimed defensive lineman Sheldon Day of waivers from the Jacksonville Jaguars on Monday. The Jaguars waived Day on Saturday in order to make room for the return of rookie wide receiver Dede Westbrook off of injured reserve. 

Day, a 2016 fourth round pick, posted 11 tackles and two tackles in 22 games over the last two seasons with Jacksonville. He played fewer than 30 snaps in all seven games with the Jaguars this season. 

Defensive lineman Arik Armstead, defensive tackle Tank Carradine, and defensive tackle Chris Jones are all on injured reserve, while defensive lineman Aaron Lynch missed the 49ers' last game in Week 10.

San Francisco ranks 22nd in the league in sacks, 23rd in pass defense, and 31st in rush defense. 

LeBron James: Colin Kaepernick ‘had a vision like Martin Luther King’

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LeBron James: Colin Kaepernick ‘had a vision like Martin Luther King’

LeBron James is an avid football fan. He's now an even bigger Colin Kaepernick fan than the sport. Following the Cavaliers' practice on Sunday, James opened up on Kaepernick and his absence from the NFL. 

"I've commended Kap, and for him to sacrifice everything for the greater good for everyone, for what he truly believed in, the utmost respect to him," James said to ESPN. "Obviously he had a vision like Martin Luther King and like some of our all-time greats that people couldn't see further than what they were doing at the point and time. And Muhammad Ali and things of that nature."

James believes the masses don't truly understand what Kaepernick was doing when he first took a knee as a protest against social and racial injustices in America. For his actions, James respects Kaepernick choosing his beliefs over his sport.

"When it's something that's new and it's something that people are not educated about or don't understand what your beliefs are all about, people are so quick to judge and people are so quick to say that what you're doing is wrong," James said. "For him to sacrifice the sport that he plays and to sacrifice the things he's done his whole life because he knew what he believed in, I salute him. I salute and respect that."

Add James to the list of those who believe Kaepernick is being blackballed by the NFL for taking a knee last season. The more games he watches, the more James sees the evidence on the wall. 

"I don't represent the NFL. I don't know their rules and regulations. But I do know Kap is getting a wrong doing, I do know that," James believes. "Just watching, he's an NFL player. He's an NFL player and you see all these other quarterbacks out there and players out there that get all these second and third chances that are nowhere near as talented as him. It just feels like he's been blackballed out of the NFL. So, I definitely do not respect that."

Kaepernick, who recently turned 30 years old, appeared in 12 games for the 49ers in the 2016-17 season. Through the air he completed 59.2 percent of his passes and ended the year with 2,241 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions. Kaepernick also added 468 yards and two more scores on the ground. 

"The only reason I could say he's not on a team is because the way he took a knee," James said. "That's the only reason. I watch football every Sunday, every Thursday, every Monday night. I see all these quarterbacks -- first-string, second-team, third-team quarterbacks -- that play sometimes when the starter gets hurt or are starters that play. Kap is better than a lot of those guys. Let's just be honest."

For his career, Kaepernick has thrown for 12,271 yards and 72 touchdowns to 30 interceptions. With his speed as a dual-threat quarterback, Kaepernick has also gained 2,300 yards rushing and 13 more touchdowns.