Steve Young, other ex-49ers to join 'Letters to 87 Live!' discussion

Steve Young, other ex-49ers to join 'Letters to 87 Live!' discussion

Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young and other 49ers greats will celebrate the legacy of the organization and talk about the current playoff-bound team in a panel discussion to raise money for the Golden Heart Fund.

Young, Dwight Hicks, Brent Jones and Eric Wright will take part in "Letters to 87 Live!" on Thursday, Jan. 16, at the Lesher Center for the Arts in Walnut Creek. Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area will moderate the discussion.

The Super Bowl-winning players will discuss the legacy of Dwight Clark and “The Catch,” while engaging in lively back-and-forth storytelling about the history of the 49ers and how the organization got to this point.

Clark had the idea for the book, “Letters to 87,” which he hoped would raise money for the Golden Heart Fund. Clark, who was battling ALS at the time, wanted to help “my guys,” he always said.

Clark passed away on June 4, 2018.

The Golden Heart Fund assists former 49ers players in need of financial, medical, physiological or emotional support. All ticket sales from the event will go to the cause that Clark supported.

Tickets are $50 apiece, and the book, “Letters to 87,” is included with the price of admission. Tickets to a limited special VIP reception is also available for $187.

For more information and to purchase tickets for the evening, please visit Lesher Center for the Arts.

49ers safety Antone Exum pays homage to Colin Kaepernick in latest song


49ers safety Antone Exum pays homage to Colin Kaepernick in latest song

Although it has been a while since they have spoken, 49ers safety Antone Exum Jr., hopes that his song ‘Officer Kaepernick’ makes it’s way back to the former NFL quarterback. 

Exum told NBC Sports Bay Area that his song, which will be released July 12th at midnight, was written approximately two years ago. Exum explained that the lyrics are his own interpretation regarding issues of social injustice as opposed to a direct endorsement of former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. 

“This song is basically a soundtrack,” Exum said. “If his movement and why he took knee had a score or soundtrack, it would be this song, that’s why I named it that. I just thought it was well suited to the song because the issues I’m talking about, are part of the reason he’s taking a knee. 

“This song is an artistic expression of where I was at at that time with my frustration.” 

Exum met Kaepernick while both were training in Arizona as their professional football careers began. He is not surprised that the former signal-caller has become a social icon. 

“You know, he was actually doing some community work and things like that,” Exum said. “I think I remember conversations about that. He’s morally a good guy, I believe. So, I wasn’t really surprised by him taking a knee or taking the stance that he’s taken.” 

While Exum expressed frustration regarding corruption in the government, courts, police, and prison systems, he wanted to be very clear that there are many individuals who are not part of the problem and have a positive affect on society. 

“This song is not to ignore the fact that we do have great police officers and government officials in our country,” Exum said. “This song is not for them, but whichever side you fit on, I still love you and won’t forsake you."

While Exum and Kaepernick share similar opinions regarding social injustice, the 49ers defensive back has his own belief in how to incite positive change. 

“Me personally, I wouldn’t take a knee, or I won’t be taking a knee after the song comes out or anything like that,” Exum said. “That sounds kind of contradictory, but I do understand why he did something so drastic. 

“Sometimes people have to do drastic things to bring light to a situation that there is no light on, or that people really aren’t paying attention to. I think at this point, I stand with us being unified. I wouldn’t take a knee for that reason because it would go against my belief in unity."

While Exum won't be taking a knee like Kaepernick, he hopes to inspire many people through his music.

“My highest goal with music is to obtain more of a voice to change the world for the better,” Exum said. “I think I can speak on some of the injustices like I’m doing in the song without having to seclude myself.” 

[RELATED: Why Jimmy G says Kittle is 'very similar' to Gronkowski]

Exum also released a song titled "4 to the 9" that is about the 49ers. It refers to several players on the team, mostly on the defensive side of the ball. 

4 To The 9
Out there in the bay, and it look like a Rafe
Hold up there go Sherm, he keep straps at his place (Richard)
Went a copped a K then I copped another K (K’Waun)
When you in the field best believe it ain’t safe

If it’s on my plate I’ma’ scrape wit’ a spoon (Spoon)
Everywhere I go Elephant in the room
But I’m off the leash like I broke out a zoo
Bodies start to drop I can’t risk the platoon

Aimin’ for the chest, hit his top like a shroom (Target area)
How he playin’ ball but his tape droppin’ soon
I got time for it
I’m aligned for it
Who you wit’?
When I see a 4 I keep a 9 for it (Protect the team)

4 to the 9
Gang till’ I die
Shorty say she wanna go downtown wit’ the guys

Tell me if you scared, watch em’ bleed from the bench
All my opps hang, I let John do the Lynch (GM)
When I take a soul on my knees I repent
And I keep a bag for the fees that I spent (Fines)

Water wet stones, like they rolled out a drencho
Shoutout Louie V Off-White for the trench doe
Pay me Jimmy Gs (Jimmy G)
I need help, help please
X on the edge like D-Fo in his cleats (Buckner)

You on E-man, all gas leave-van (Mosley)
They like what’s your role, certified steez man
I think that’s your wife lookin’ like a de-man
That’s my number one, number two she-fan

4 to the 9
Gang till’ I die

Shorty say she wanna go downtown wit’ the guys

Dante Pettis' progress clear to 49ers teammates, coaches at minicamp

Dante Pettis' progress clear to 49ers teammates, coaches at minicamp

SANTA CLARA — Dante Pettis turned the right heads at 49ers minicamp last week. 

Quarterbacks Jimmy Garoppolo and Nick Mullens, as well as coach Kyle Shanahan, all noticed marked improvement in the receiver ahead of his second NFL season. 

Garoppolo has seen a physical transformation from Pettis. The QB thinks believes that Pettis' added muscle weight will help the receiver on the field. 

“Dante’s body is maturing,” Garoppolo said. “He’s coming out of breaks with power, he has speed. It doesn’t look like he’s moving very fast but really is. It’s a weird thing for a quarterback to get used to. He’s different than most guys running.”  

Garoppolo detailed how visually different Pettis’ speed is when you compare him to what Marquise Goodwin does. 

Those differences even extend to teammate -- and Olympic hopeful -- Marquise Goodwin. Garoppolo said that requires him to adjust when he's targeting Pettis. 

“Where Marquise looks like he’s running really fast, and he is running really fast, where with Dante it’s different,” Garoppolo said. “Being able to get on the same page with him, I think these last few weeks have been very important. 

“It’s just different. It’s hard to describe unless you’re seeing it, but you’re trying to throw it while he’s coming out of a break, but he comes out of break differently than most guys. It’s so hard on the defense that you really just know he’s going to get open, you just don’t want to miss him.”  

Pettis' physical change was clear to Shanahan, too. But Shanahan has also noticed improvements on the mental side, and said he thinks Pettis' hunger to improve is clear. 

“When I saw him the first week he got back to see the size that he had put on, not that he’s going to be real noticeably different to everyone, but he worked while he was gone,” Shanahan said. “He worked while he was away. He tried to get bigger. 

“He worked more at his routes and he came here with the idea of ‘Hey, I’m not just coming here to get better back in shape, I’m coming here to get better.’”

Pettis has said he is more comfortable in the 49ers' offense with a year of experience, and that was clear to Mullens.

“Yeah you can tell,” Mullens said. “You know, Dante has always had the physical talent of being so shaky, making guys miss and routing guys up. Now he doesn’t have to think about the play, he can go naturally do that.

“So things are coming very natural for him he’s making a lot of plays out there and it’s great to see. It’s been awesome to see him develop.” 

[RELATED: Will 49ers trade QBs Beathard or Mullens?]

Pettis isn't hesitating, and his confidence is clear. When you combine that with his physical and mental development, the young receiver seems ready to have a bigger role in his second NFL season.

“He’s making a lot of plays, being very consistent, and Dante can set the speed," Mullens said. "I think you guys have been able to see that and so he’s making a lot of plays and he’s a great teammate.”