In past meetings, Lynch and Kaepernick 'hit it off; there was a trust there'

In past meetings, Lynch and Kaepernick 'hit it off; there was a trust there'

SANTA CLARA – New coach Kyle Shanahan promises to watch all the film on quarterback Colin Kaepernick before determining whether he decides if there’s a fit for the 49ers offense.

“I see a lot better than I hear,” Shanahan said on Thursday. “I have to go watch it on tape. Colin, just like any other player, is someone I’m going to be watching a lot of tape on over these next few weeks.

“Before we look at anything -- free agency, the draft, anything -- you have to know what the players on your team are. And that doesn’t happen from just turning on a game. That happens from watching a lot of stuff. It takes a lot of time.”

Lynch, the 49ers’ new general manager, said Kaepernick reached out to him and the men spoke. He plans to meet with Kaepernick face-to-face in the near future.

[RELATED: Shanahan evokes Harbaugh's greatness in opening remarks as 49ers coach]

Lynch was asked if Kaepernick will be judged solely on his football ability or other areas will figure into the equation. Lynch said he always had good interactions with Kaepernick when they met prior to games Lynch worked as a television analyst on FOX.

“It will be a football decision,” Lynch said, “but I think part of that, there are different layers to that. I think everything will be included in the decision. I’m not talking specifically about his stance, though. When you have a quarterback, the great ones are leaders of men. All those things will be taken into account.

“I’m looking forward to sitting down with him. I really am. Colin and I, when I did some 49ers games, I’d say we hit it off. I’d say there was a trust there. I think that trust extends, and I was thrilled when he reached out. I’m looking forward to talking with him.”

Kaepernick, 29, produced his best statistical season since 2013, his first full season as a starter. In 11 starts, Kaepernick completed 59.2 percent of his passes with 16 touchdowns, four interceptions and a passer rating of 90.7. He also rushed for 468 yards and two touchdowns.

Kaepernick signed a restructured contract in October that allows him to opt out of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent. He is expected to opt out. If he does not, the 49ers would be expected to release him to avoid being responsible for his scheduled $14.9 million pay for 2017.

Kaepernick started 58 of the past 71 games for the organization since the middle of the 2012 season.

Blaine Gabbert, who started the other 13 games but ended last season as the No. 3 quarterback, is also scheduled for unrestricted free agency, along with Christian Ponder and Thad Lewis. Ponder surpassed Gabbert late in the season to be the No. 2 quarterback, and Lewis spent the season on injured reserve with a torn ACL.

“The first order of business is Kyle and I both really attacking it and seeing what we have here,” Lynch said. “And we’ll do that with his situation. We’ll sit down with him. If we see fit that he’s a part of it, we’ll commit to that. If not, we’ll figure things out.”

Said Shanahan, “It starts for me with just studying people. Most of the offensive guys I haven’t studied since they were college players. The defensive guys I’ve studied to a degree because I’ve played against the Niners a couple of times over the last few years.”

49ers sign former first-round pick guard


49ers sign former first-round pick guard

The 49ers added some talent in the trenches on Tuesday.

Guard Jonathan Cooper inked a one-year deal, the team announced.

Cooper was originally drafted No. 7 overall by the Cardinals in 2013. After two seasons in Arizona, he spent time with the Patriots, Browns and Cowboys.

Last season, he appeared in 13 games for Dallas.

“Having started 27 games in four NFL seasons, Jonathan brings great experience to the interior of our offensive line. We look forward to him competing for a starting job at guard, while also bringing a veteran presence to our locker room. Jonathan is a welcome addition to our team,” GM John Lynch said in a statement.

Richard Sherman envisions making contributions to 49ers on and off the field

Richard Sherman envisions making contributions to 49ers on and off the field

SANTA CLARA – Veteran cornerback Richard Sherman believes he has a lot of good football ahead of him.

But he knows he is not coming to the 49ers after seven seasons with the rival Seattle Seahawks just for how he fits into defensive coordinator Robert Saleh’s scheme. The 49ers signed Sherman to a three-year contract on March 10 -- one day after the Seahawks released him.

Sherman, who turns 30 on March 30, views his job description as being a major influence and contributor to the 49ers on and off the field.

“I think it’s probably 50-50,” Sherman said Tuesday in an interview with NBC Sports Bay Area. “Obviously, I’m going to be asked to play at a high level, and that’s what I expect from myself and that’s what I expect to bring to this team. But outside of that, I think I bring an aspect of culture and a winning mentality.”

Sherman is a four-time Pro Bowl performer and three-time first-team All-Pro. He said the commitment to winning is all-consuming. It is a mindset he helps to share with his new teammates.

“It’s about waking up and doing things that will contribute to winning later, whether it’s your diet, your sleep habits, how you treat your teammates, how you converse,” Sherman said. “Do you go out tonight or do you stay in and get some extra studying? What are you doing to help us win the game on Sunday? Just that mentality will help a lot of these people.”

There might be no young player on the 49ers in need of a good role model more than Reuben Foster, who is set to enter his second NFL season. Foster was arrested this offseason for possession of marijuana in Alabama. A month later, he was arrested in Los Gatos for alleged domestic violence, threats and possession of an assault weapon.

On Tuesday, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office said no decision has yet been reached whether to pursue criminal charges against Foster.

Sherman said he has not spoken to Foster but he will be willing to be a mentor to Foster and provide him with support. Sherman said he has heard a lot of great things about Foster.

“If I can help him, I’ll do my best,” Sherman said. “I look forward to meeting him and being a teammate of his, and helping him in any way I can. To think I can change everything he does, I’d be foolish to say I could. But am I going to try my best to help him and put him in positions to be more successful in the future? Yes, I am.”