49ers

Will the 49ers be distracted by protests? 'No, not at all'

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USATSI

Will the 49ers be distracted by protests? 'No, not at all'

SANTA CLARA – The 49es’ internal discussion of how to proceed with a unified protest of racial inequality has not impacted the team’s preparations this week, coach Kyle Shanahan said.

“No, not at all,” Shanahan told NBC Sports Bay Area on Thursday during a weekly sit-down interview that airs on 49ers Game Plan.

“You don’t change your routine. I think it’s something that you definitely have to address, especially with what happened this weekend. So we addressed it the first thing Monday. It was a bonus day. Usually, Monday is the day after a game. For us, it was four days after a game, so we had that extra time.”

The 49ers were off over the weekend when there was widespread reaction around the league prompted by President Trump’s remarks in which he encouraged NFL owners to cut any player who takes part in a protest during the playing of the national anthem.

"Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he's fired. He's fired,'" Trump said during a speech in Alabama last Friday.

Shanahan said the topic was addressed for approximately five minutes during a team meeting on Monday. Shanahan later got together with the team’s 12-player leadership council for about 20 minutes.

A players-only meeting was held Thursday after practice to further discuss options for an appropriate unified action.

“On Thursdays after practice we let the players get out of here,” Shanahan said. “We start up early Friday to review practice. Those guys right now are actually getting together and talking about exactly what they’d like to do to really represent their support for each other.

“They’re going to let me know afterward and we’ll figure that out. But that will probably be about 15 minutes dedicated to that before we get on the plane to fly to Arizona on Saturday.”

It is not known what the team has planned for Sunday prior to the 49ers’ game against the Arizona Cardinals in Glendale, Arizona.

“I think we as a team, as long as we stick together, we could figure something out and come together as one,” 49ers veteran linebacker NaVorro Bowman said prior to the team meeting.

When asked how the team would respond, Bowman said, “That remains to be seen on Sunday.”

T.O. 'not actively seeking' NFL return, expounds on Hall of Fame decision

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AP

T.O. 'not actively seeking' NFL return, expounds on Hall of Fame decision

Terrell Owens still is showing off the kind of spectacular shape he is in, even at 44 years old. Just look at his social media pages, and you'll see T.O. working out with today's NFL stars and running a blazing 40-yard dash. 

Even though he's about to be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, is Owens looking to make a comeback? 

On Tuesday, Canada-based agent Jason Staroszik told TSN and ESPN that T.O. "100 percent" wants to play football again. On Wednesday at the ESPYS, the former 49ers wide receiver clarified his comments. 

Owens says he isn't "actively seeking to get into the NFL," but he did say he would entertain other opportunities with football, including the CFL. 

"I know that I do have the ability to play," Owens said, via ESPN.com. "I know everybody sees the shape that I'm in. There's a lot of athletes that play their prospective sports, but there are few guys that defy the odds. I think I'm one of those guys.

"It's unfortunate that I haven't been able to continue my career, but again, I'm not actively seeking to get into the NFL; but again, if there's an opportunity for me to play, then yeah, I will entertain that, as well as the CFL."

The hot topic with Owens lately has been his decision to not attend the Hall of Fame ceremony. Instead of being in Canton, Ohio next month, Owens will make his own speech at his alma mater, the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

"It's always unfortunate, and people have a lot to say when someone does something different, but what I'm doing is not wrong," he said.

Owens said he has been working every day on his acceptance speech. As far as what went into his decision to not attend the ceremony, Owens looked to legendary basketball coach John Wooden. 

"For me, I think, overall, everybody's obviously wondering what went into my decision," Owens said. "I think John Wooden said it best: 'Be more concerned about your character than your reputation.' I think what the noise is right now is more about my reputation than my actual character.

"They're making the narrative more so about me offending the Hall of Famers, and that has nothing to do with it. I respect all of those Hall of Famers that have gone in before me and going in with me and after me. It has nothing to do with those Hall of Famers."

Greg Cosell believes this 49ers player is poised for a breakout season

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AP

Greg Cosell believes this 49ers player is poised for a breakout season

With the 146th pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers selected ...

George Kittle.

The tight end from Iowa had a solid rookie season, racking up 43 catches for 515 yards and two touchdowns.

On the latest episode of the 49ers Insider Podcast with Matt Maiocco, NFL Films senior producer Greg Cosell was talking about Kyle Shanahan and Rams head coach Sean McVay. And then, unsolicited, Cosell pivoted the conversation to Kittle.

"You know, I think one player we should mention who I really liked coming out of college -- and I know he fought some injuries last year, but I think that he has a chance to be a really meaningul part of this offense -- and that's George Kittle," Cosell said. "I think George Kittle is a really good tight end who can do a lot of things.

"He can line up and be a really good blocking tight end -- and obviously we know that Kyle's offense does start with the run game. I think he's more athletic than people probably give him credit for.

"I remember studying him coming out of Iowa and looking at some of his combine measureables -- some were superior to those of OJ Howard from Alabama, and I think people would be surprised by that.

"In this offense, he might not catch 80 balls, but he might average 14, 15 yards a catch, and for a tight end, that's pretty darn good."

Kittle had his best game in the season finale, making four catches for 100 yards at the Rams.