Harbaugh: Unanimous within 49ers that Smith is 'our guy'


Harbaugh: Unanimous within 49ers that Smith is 'our guy'

On Saturday, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith went on stage to accept the award for NFL Coach of the Year on behalf of Jim Harbaugh.The two men played golf together on Tuesday at Pepple Beach as part of a five-hole 49ers vs. San Francisco Giants charity shootout. And on Thursday, Smith will serve as Harbaugh's caddie on the first day of the AT&T National Pro-Am.Smith is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent this offseason, but it appears highly unlikely that he'll still be available to the other 31 teams in the league when the free-agent signing period opens March 13.Harbaugh has made it clear he wants Smith re-signed, and he said Tuesday on "Chronicle Live" that the 49ers' decision-makers are in agreement that Smith is needed back.
"We're all in lockstep as an organization that Alex Smith is our guy. It's well-documented. You saw the way he played this year," Harbaugh told host Jim Kozimor. "(He is a) tremendous leader on our football team."There's Alex and there are other guys, too, that are high priorities. We want our guys. There are guys who play like 49ers, and what they do is they play their hearts out for our team. So Alex and others, (it's) going to be a high-priority to get those guys signed."RELATED: Alex Smith 2011 game logs
Smith, who turns 28 in May, posted career-best numbers in 2011 with 61.4 percent completions, 3,144 yards passing and a 90.7 passer rating. He threw 17 touchdown passes and just five interceptions while starting all 16 games. More important, the 49ers won the NFC West with a 13-3 record and advanced to the NFC Championship Game, where they lost 20-17 to the New York Giants in overtime."We're going to need to be better this year," Harbaugh said. "We're going to draft lower (No. 30). We'll play probably a harder schedule because we won the division. Expectations will be higher and teams will be coming after us. For a lot of reasons, we're going to have to be better."And Smith, who also appeared on "Chronicle Live" on Tuesday, agrees he must improve -- and his team must improve."For me, it's all about strengthening your weaknesses -- getting better," Smith said, "really analyzing where you need to get better and being honest with yourself, as a player and as a team. That's what will happen in the coming weeks."Smith returned to the 49ers in 2011 on a one-year contract that paid him a total of 6.5 million after hearing boos from the home crowd the previous season."I always felt supported in the Bay Area," Smith said. "Everywhere I go, I've always felt that support."In reference to the boos he heard in 2010, Smith said, "It's understandable. I'm a sports fan. When you're team is struggling, it's frustrating."But it is the memory of the 49ers' home playoff games that will drive Smith and his teammates to get better, he said."I don't think I'll ever forget the two home games at the 'Stick, the two playoff games and what that atmosphere was like, what the fans were like," Smith said. "That's what we're striving to get back to, get back to that environment because it was special. And once you get a taste of that, you don't want anything else."

49ers claim outside linebacker off waivers from Patriots


49ers claim outside linebacker off waivers from Patriots

The 49ers on Wednesday were assigned outside linebacker Cassius Marsh off waivers from the New England Patriots.

The Patriots waived Marsh on Tuesday after acquiring him in September from the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for fifth- and seventh-round draft picks.

Marsh (6 foot 4, 245 pounds) appeared in 46 games in his four NFL seasons. Three of his four career sacks came in 2016 while with the Seahawks. He was Seattle's fourth-round pick in 2014.

Marsh is the second defensive player the 49ers have claimed off waivers this week. The club acquired former Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman Sheldon Day on Monday. The 49ers released defensive linemen Tony McDaniel and Datone Jones within the past week.

The 49ers are at their roster maximum of 53 players. The club will have to clear a roster spot if Tank Carradine, as expected, is activated off injured reserve in order to play Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at Levi’s Stadium.

Who 49ers start at quarterback is the last thing on Pete Carroll's mind


Who 49ers start at quarterback is the last thing on Pete Carroll's mind

SANTA CLARA – Quarterback C.J. Beathard is expected to make his fifth consecutive start for the 49ers on Sunday, but Seattle coach Pete Carroll said his team will be prepared to face Jimmy Garoppolo, too.

“It really isn’t a factor,” Carroll said in a conference call with Bay Area reporters on Wednesday. “We’re just preparing for the 49ers. They got a style of offense. They got really good players who do what they do. And whoever’s triggering it from the quarterback spot, we’re going to go play football.

“We’ve seen Jimmy play. We’ve seen how he’s mobile and the kind of athlete and competitor he is. But other than that, we just go play football. We can’t do anything about that.”

Beathard remained on the sideline when the clubs met Sept. 17 in Seattle. The Seahawks have defeated the 49ers seven consecutive times, including a 12-9 victory in Week 2 this season. Quarterback Brian Hoyer started the 49ers’ first six games of the season and rushed for just 7 yards during that time. Beathard has 115 yards rushing on 20 attempts in Kyle Shanahan’s offense.

“He’s been mobile. He’s got a rushing average, you know,” Carroll said of Beathard. “He’s averaging 5-yards a carry and stuff. They’re incorporating him in the run game some that we have to be concerned about. That’s different than other quarterbacks at times. I’d think Jimmy can do the same stuff.

“He (Beathard) is getting more settled. You can see the offense growing. You can see Kyle able to expand and do more stuff. He’s an incredible offensive coordinator and play-caller that we’ve respected for a long time. I think they’re just grown and they’re getting more proficient at what they’re doing."