49ers

49ers say Reuben Foster will not participate in offseason program

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AP

49ers say Reuben Foster will not participate in offseason program

Linebacker Reuben Foster, who faces three felony charges including domestic violence, will not take part in the 49ers’ offseason conditioning program, the club announced Sunday evening.

The 49ers open their offseason program on Monday at the club's training facility in Santa Clara. A joint statement from CEO Jed York, general manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan read:

"Reuben Foster will not participate in team activities as he is tending to his legal matters. As previously stated, his future with the team will be determined by the information revealed during the legal process."

The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s office on Thursday announced its charges against Foster, stemming from a Feb. 11 incident involving a woman described as his live-in girlfriend:

The DA’s office announced three felony charges:
--Domestic violence with an allegation that he inflicted great bodily injury;
--Forcefully attempting to prevent a victim from reporting a crime;
--Possession of an assault weapon (a Sig Sauer 516).

Foster is also charged with one misdemeanor:
--Possession of large capacity weapon magazine.

If convicted of those crimes, Foster faces more than 11 years in prison, according to the DA’s office.

According to the DA’s office, the alleged victim flagged down a stranger’s car driving on Shannon Road in Los Gatos to call police. She told responding officers that Foster dragged her by her hair, physically threw her out of the house, and punched her in the head eight to 10 times. She was bruised and sustained a ruptured ear drum, according to the DA’s office.

York said recently at the NFL owners meetings he would make the ultimate decision when it comes to whether a player is released due to off-field or legal issues. He spoke of the difficulty of finding out information about a pending legal case. He said the club must find ways to help individuals to avoid situations such as the one in which Foster is alleged to have been involved.

"It’s difficult when you have the league doing investigations. It’s hard for teams to do investigations, but you want to try to find out as much detail and as much information as you can," York said in an interview with NBC Sports Bay Area and The Athletic. "But when you’re dealing with legal issues, it’s just a very, very gray area. So you want to try to get as much information as you can.

"But, I think ultimately, you want to take a step back and say, ‘How do you help 53 guys? How do you make sure that (there are) life skills training? Just the experience we’ve seen, and we’ve certainly seen a lot at the 49ers and you see it across the league, how do you help these guys not make the same mistakes that other people have made?"

Foster has visited the 49ers' workout facility for most of the offseason for his personal workouts. The organization could still allowed to provide him with support and assistance, but he will not take part in meetings or organized workouts at the beginning of the offseason program. The official offseason program runs through a three-day minicamp scheduled for June 12-14.

Shanahan remains in contact with Reuben Foster, shares his state of mind

Shanahan remains in contact with Reuben Foster, shares his state of mind

SANTA CLARA – A judge will make a crucial ruling on Wednesday that is likely to determine the 49ers' next move with linebacker Reuben Foster, who faces two felony counts of domestic violence.

The decision will be announced at 3:30 p.m. at the Hall of Justice in San Jose whether probable cause was demonstrated last week during a preliminary hearing. Foster faces three felony charges of domestic violence, forcefully attempting a victim from reporting a crime, and possession of an assault weapon.

Foster has not taken part in any of the 5 ½ weeks of the team’s offseason program since the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office filed the formal charges in April. The 49ers opened organized team activities on Monday.

“It’s still ongoing,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said of Foster’s legal issues. “Hopefully, we’ll have some more answers by tomorrow. We’ve been patient this whole time. We’re going to continue to be patient until we get a few more answers. And, then, when the decision does come, I promise you guys, I’ll answer that for you right away.”

The DA's office last week attempted to present evidence in court to justify moving forward to the trial phase with Foster. However, the accuser, Foster’s former girlfriend, recanted her initial statements to policy and gave testimony that supported Foster's defense.

The woman, Elissa Ennis, said under oath last week that Foster did not harm her. She said her injuries were the result of a fight with one or two women following a road rage incident the night before the alleged incident with Foster. She said she was upset because Foster was threatening to break up with her and she wanted to ruin his career. She said she lied about her accusations of Foster's abuse.

The 49ers took no action after the initial reports of the alleged incident, choosing to let the legal process play out. Although Foster has not been showing up at team headquarters, members of the organization are remaining in contact with him.

“I reach out to him about once or twice a week to see how he’s doing,” Shanahan said.

How is Foster doing?

“He’s hanging in there,” Shanahan said. “Obviously, it’s a tough challenge. I think anyone would realize. It’s a very hard thing to go through. We’ll see how this ends up, but just always hope that every situation you’re in, in the long run, it can make you a better person and a better man. And I think Reuben is handling it right.”

Report: NFL teams viewed Kaepernick as a starting QB, collusion case reveals

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USATSI

Report: NFL teams viewed Kaepernick as a starting QB, collusion case reveals

Quarterback Colin Kaepernick opted out of his deal with the San Francisco 49ers last March, and went unsigned for the entirety of the 2017 season. That, reportedly, may not have been because of his playing ability. 

Testimony from witnesses under deposition in Kaepernick's collusion case against the NFL and "internal franchise documents generated as part of the free-agency evaluation process" indicated that multiple teams viewed Kaepernick as good enough to be a starting quarterback, Pro Football Talk reported Monday, citing a source with knowledge of the situation.

Kaepernick filed a grievance under the NFL's collective bargaining agreement in October, alleging that he was unsigned after first sitting, than kneeling, during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequality throughout the 2016 season. He started 11 games in 2016, throwing for 2,241 yards, 16 touchdowns, and four interceptions. His interception percentage (1.2 percent) was sixth-lowest among starting quarterbacks (minimum 10 starts) that year, and he finished 17th in passer rating (90.7).