Dee Ford says knee issue will not hinder him in first 49ers season

Dee Ford says knee issue will not hinder him in first 49ers season

SANTA CLARA – San Francisco 49ers defensive end Dee Ford’s bothersome left knee might require surgery.

But that decision will be made after the season, Ford said, because he figures he knows what must be done to manage the condition that has bothered him in the past.

“I had to deal with it last year, too,” Ford said on Tuesday. “I didn’t expect it to come back this soon, but it’s nothing I can’t take. I’ve been through worse.”

Ford said he dealt with the knee tendinitis and irritation to his quadriceps throughout last season while also playing through a torn groin. Ford, then a member of the Chiefs, ustained the groin injury in Kansas City’s Week 3 game against the 49ers. He did not miss any games on his way to registering a career-high 13 sacks.

When suggested that he has a high tolerance for pain, Ford responded, “I would say.”

The 49ers acquired Ford in an offseason trade from Kansas City for a second-round pick in the 2020 draft to bring some more life to the team’s outside pass rush. Ford has shown what he can do despite experiencing issues with his health.

Ford did not play in the preseason due to his knee condition, and he has been listed as questionable for each of the 49ers’ first three games this season. He sat out the second half of the 49ers’ Week 2 game at Cincinnati and was not available to practice last week until Friday.

Ford is tied for the 49ers lead, along with DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead, with two sacks apiece. Ford is scheduled to receive some valuable rest and rehabilitation the next week weeks. The 49ers return from the bye week to face the Cleveland Browns on Monday, Oct. 7.

He said his knee condition will be re-evaluated after he manages his health on a weekly basis for the remainder of the season.

“We’ll go further once we get done at the end of the year,” he said. “We’ll see what we have to do. We’ll have to do something, of course. This is nothing that’s going to hinder me this year. I’ve been through worse.”

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Ford first experienced his left knee issues in 2013 when he sustained a torn medial-collateral ligament two weeks before the start of his final season at Auburn. He missed two games but did not give the condition proper time for a full recovery.

Ford missed 10 games in 2017 with a back injury, which ultimately required him to be played on season-ending injured reserve.

“I played through a lot of stuff,” he said.

NFL rumors: 49ers interested in signing Jarius Wright in free agency

NFL rumors: 49ers interested in signing Jarius Wright in free agency

Help could be on the way for the 49ers. Receivers Deebo Samuel and Richie James went down to injuries this offseason, and San Francisco reportedly is eyeing a veteran. 

The Athletic's Ben Standig reported Tuesday receiver Jarius Wright is on the 49ers' short list of free agents to sign right now. 

Wright played for the Carolina Panthers last season, finishing with just 28 receptions for 296 receiving yards and no touchdowns. He is an eight-year veteran, though, with plenty of experience under his belt. 

[SPORTS UNCOVERED: Listen to the latest episode]

Samuel (fractured foot) and James (fractured wrist) both are expected to be back before the regular season begins. But that's being optimistic, which doesn't always come to fruition with injuries.

In their absence, players like rookie Brandon Aiyuk and Jalen Hurd will have to step up for the 49ers. The door could even open for seventh-round pick Jauan Jennings

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The 49ers also should receive a big boost with the healthy return of slot receiver Trent Taylor, who has looked explosive in offseason workouts. Dante Pettis shouldn't be written off quite yet, either.

But coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch very well could want to add a veteran for training camp. Perhaps that's where Wright fits. 

The 49ers believe in their talented, unproven group of young receivers. Still, it never hurts to add experience to the fold.

49ers' Joe Montana reveals pregame rituals, most admired teammate

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49ers' Joe Montana reveals pregame rituals, most admired teammate

Joe Montana has seen some things -- he’s seen a lot of things. 

The Hall of Fame quarterback spent 13 seasons with the 49ers and with four Super Bowl championships and two MVP awards, his legendary status precedes him. 

During a Q&A session (h/t 49ersWebZone) with Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan -- part of the “Excel presents #SpeakingOf series -- Montana answered a few things about his illustrious career. 

He mentioned playing at MetLife Stadium against the New York Giants was the most difficult away stadium to play at. Ryan answered that playing in New Orleans was difficult, and while Montana mirrored those sentiments, he admitted he’s never lost there, while he laughed.

The Superdome is a difficult place to play typically because of the noise from the crowd -- which makes it tough for offenses to yell over everything going on. Comparatively, it could make it hard on defenses as well. Obviously that might not be the case now with coronavirus protocols being put in place to not allow fans into stadiums, but you get the idea.

Montana also talked about an adorable pre-game ritual where he made sure he would see his wife at the home games. 

“And if I didn't see her, because I know they were all out tailgating, she always made sure she came by to give a wave with the kids, her and the kids, before the game started,” he said.

The best-dressed teammate of Montana’s, naturally, was Jerry Rice which shouldn't be too much of a surprise. If you didn’t see the way Rice wore clothes, just imagine the flawless way he roamed the field and made catches and equate that to his fashion sense.

But Montana admired another former teammate, offensive guard John Ayers, because of the way he handled legendary linebacker, Lawrence Taylor. He did it better than anyone. 

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Ayers was a major contributor in that 89-yard drive that turned into “The Catch,” against the Dallas Cowboys in the 1982 NFC Playoffs. Yeah, you know which one I’m talking about. Ayers was dubbed an outstanding pass protector and it was well-known how he was with Taylor. 

He was very unselfish and it’s apparent that stuck with Montana.