Kaepernick: Support ranged from Atlanta to Buffalo

Kaepernick: Support ranged from Atlanta to Buffalo

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers on Sunday played their final game outside of California.

The team traveled to all corners of the United States, and quarterback Colin Kaepernick said he received different receptions to his protest of racial inequalities in different regions.

“I think that’s something to me that was very evident depending on where we’re playing,” Kaepernick said on Tuesday.

He said he received as much support Sunday in Atlanta as any place the 49ers have played outside of Levi's Stadium.

“Atlanta was somewhere where I had a lot of support, a lot of people saying they agree with what I’m doing, support it and are happy that I did it and to keep going and to stay strong," Kaepernick said.

“And there’s other places where the fans don’t agree as much. Buffalo, in particular, was one where that was very evident. So it shows the different cultures and different beliefs throughout this country and it also makes it very evident that there’s a difference in perspective between white America and black America.”

Kaepernick began his protest during the exhibition season by sitting on the team’s bench during the national anthem. In the final exhibition game in San Diego and for each of the 49ers’ 14 regular-season games, Kaepernick has taken a knee during the playing of the Star-Spangled Banner.

The 49ers’ travels have taken the team to Charlotte, Seattle, Buffalo, Arizona, Miami, Chicago and Atlanta. The team concludes its season at Los Angeles on Saturday, then back at Levi’s Stadium for the Jan. 1 finale against the Seahawks.

Kaepernick said he received encouragement during the 49ers’ stay at the team hotel in the Buckhead region of Atlanta.

“I don’t move around too much when we’re there, but, as far as the hotel staff, the people that are around, a lot of support and a lot of people making sure they went out of their way to say that they did support it, which means a lot,” Kaepernick said. “I hope those people and people that support it use their voices more and more and speak out more and more to try to help create change.”

Buffalo was at the other end of the spectrum, Kaepernick said.

“I think volume, what I heard, things that I saw after the fact as far as in the parking lot, T-shirts, all of those things,” he said. “It was very evident that this was something that they don’t agree with, which to me I don’t understand.”

When asked what kind of affect the reactions he received would have on his future work at the community level, Kaepernick said, “I want to go where people truly want to create change and that’s somewhere that change definitely does need to be created, but I think there are better places for this to be initiated and grow from there.”

Draft pick Marcell Harris cleared to begin practice with 49ers


Draft pick Marcell Harris cleared to begin practice with 49ers

SANTA CLARA – Rookie strong safety Marcell Harris was cleared to practice Wednesday and could join the 49ers as early as the team’s Week 9 game against the Raiders.

Harris sustained a hamstring injury in mid-August during a joint practice with the Houston Texans. He was placed on injured reserve after the 49ers cut their roster to 53 players, making him eligible to return to play this season.

Harris was a sixth-round draft pick of the 49ers after sitting out his entire senior season at Florida with a torn Achilles. The 49ers must activate him by Nov. 7 for him to be eligible to play this season.

The 49ers also announced two players recently cut from the 53-man roster have been added to the practice squad: tight end Cole Wick and defensive lineman Ryan Delaire.

Nick Mullens gains security as backup QB even after 49ers sign veteran


Nick Mullens gains security as backup QB even after 49ers sign veteran

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers made a roster move on Sept. 26 that amounted to a huge vote of confidence for Nick Mullens.

Coach Kyle Shanahan pegged Mullens as the quarterback he wanted to serve as C.J. Beathard’s backup after Jimmy Garoppolo was lost for the season due to a knee injury. Mullens received a promotion from the practice squad after the 49ers brought in seven quarterbacks for workouts.

“I honestly try not to pay too much attention to it, but at the same time, it really boosted my confidence that Kyle and John Lynch believe in me,” Mullens said on The 49ers Insider Podcast.

“They’ve given me an opportunity to be the backup and it’s my job to take full responsibility and advantage of this opportunity, and I think I am so far.”

Shanahan gave Mullens another reason to feel security in his position on the depth chart – even after the club signed veteran quarterback Tom Savage to a one-year deal this week. Shanahan said Mullens will remain the team’s backup quarterback, and there is no competition for the job.

“One guy knows our offense and knows how to line people up and has played in it and has done a lot of good things for our team,” Shanahan said on Wednesday. “Our team has confidence in him. The other guy just got here last night and is just trying to learn what the words mean.”

Mullens set the stage for his promotion with a full season on the 49ers’ practice squad. He did not see much time at quarterback during the regular-season practices, as the No. 3 quarterback typically has to fill in at other positions.

“You could say my knowledge of overall football has grown through the experience of playing other positions,” Mullens said. “As a practice squad quarterback, you’re really just there to help the team any way you can.

“Obviously, you have to be ready to play, but at the same time, whether it’s special teams, receiver, safety, there are tasks and jobs that need to be done. So the more valuable you can be to the team, the more you’ll help the team.”

The 49ers were the only team that brought in Mullens for a pre-draft visit in 2017. When he went undrafted after a record-setting career at Southern Mississippi, he signed with the 49ers as a free agent.

After Mullens received his promotion with the 49ers last week, he received a congratulatory text from Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre, the most famous Southern Miss alum.

“He came around a couple times a year,” Mullens said of Favre. “And after I graduated, I got to work with him for a couple of days, throw the routes, talk ball, watch film.

“It’s pretty cool to know that he supports me and other Southern Miss Golden Eagles.”