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San Francisco 49ers

Stadium: Levi's Stadium | Coach: Jim Harbaugh
Team RankingOverallRushingPassing
Offense19th119.5 (10th)220.5 (24th)
Defense2nd92.9 (7th)207.2 (2nd)

49ers report: Inside slant

The Sports Xchange
 
Inside slant · Notes, quotes · Strategy and personnel
 

The 49ers have paid particular attention to their receiving corps this offseason. Three of the team's projected top four receivers are newcomers to the team.

"From top to bottom there is great skill level," 49ers quarterback Alex Smith said. "There is going to be a lot of competition for those spots. They all can run and make plays."

The 49ers jettisoned enigmatic receiver Antonio Bryant in the offseason. They signed Ashley Lelie as a free agent and drafted Jason Hill of Washington State in the third round. The following day, the 49ers traded a fourth-round pick to the Seahawks for Darrell Jackson.

Jackson, who was bothered late last season with a turf-toe injury, did not participate in the 49ers' only minicamp. But at some point in the offseason, Smith looks forward to working with the seven-year veteran.

"The chemistry depends on the two individuals," Smith said. "It's hard to say how it will take place before you practice. I've heard a lot about Darrell from Trent (Dilfer), so I'm looking forward to working with him."

A year ago, Arnaz Battle led the 49ers' wideouts with 59 receptions. He had a solid season, catching 23 passes on third down. Bryant's 733 receiving yards led the team. The 49ers have not had a 1,000-yard receiver since Terrell Owens in 2003.

"It's important just to have the threat of the passing game," Smith said. "It's a key to have that big-play potential to help out our running game. We've certainly had our ups-and-downs in the passing game, but I'm definitely excited about where he's headed.'

Jackson is expected to compete against Battle for the team's starting job at flanker, while Lelie and Hill will battle for the starting job at split end.

Copyright (C) 2007 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.

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