Jed York touts his uncle as Hall worthy


Jed York touts his uncle as Hall worthy

On a conference call Thursday in which he answered questions about the NFL's approval of a 200 million loan for the 49ers' Santa Clara stadium effort, team president Jed York concluded with some words about his uncle.Edward J. DeBartolo Jr., who oversaw the 49ers as owner from 1977 to 1997, is one of 17 finalists under consideration for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Four to seven individuals will be announced for election on Saturday at 2:30 p.m."My uncle is a finalist for the Hall of Fame, and that voting will be on Saturday," York said. "I'm very hopeful that he is given an opportunity to be in the Hall of Fame. He's been one of the greatest owners in the history of professional sports. And he's been a great inspiration to me and many other people that are involved in sports teams. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for him."The 49ers won five Super Bowls under DeBartolo's guidance. DeBartolo would be an easy choice for the Hall of Fame if it weren't for the way his tenure came to an end. He resigned as the controlling owner in December 1997 when he became a target of gambling fraud charges in Louisiana.Former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue suspended DeBartolo for the 1999 season and fined him 1 million after DeBartolo pleaded guilty to the felony charge of failing to report an extortion attempt by then-Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards.DeBartolo's sister, Denise, and her husband, John York, took over the 49ers. After the sides launched dueling lawsuits, a settlement was reached in 2000 in which DeBartolo surrendered his stake in the 49ers in exchange for the family's real estate holdings.DeBartolo, who lives in Tampa, Fla., has remained in the background for the past decade. In recent years, he has eagerly served as a sounding board to Jed York, with whom he speaks regularly. DeBartolo accepted his nephew's invitation to appear at Candlestick Park as honorary captain for the 49ers' Championship Game two weeks ago against the New York Giants.The new Hall of Fame class will be chosen from the following list of finalists: Jerome Bettis, Tim Brown, Jack Butler, Cris Carter, Dermontti Dawson, DeBartolo, Chris Doleman, Kevin Greene, Charles Haley, Cortez Kennedy, Curtis Martin, Bill Parcells, Andre Reed, Willie Roaf, Will Shields, Dick Stanfel and Aeneas Williams.

49ers claim former Jaguars defensive lineman off waivers


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’


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.