The 49ers acquired veteran backup quarterback Trent Dilfer from the Browns in exchange for quarterback Ken Dorsey and a seventh-round draft pick in 2007. Dilfer, 34, gives the 49ers an experienced player who has a history of working well with younger quarterbacks.
"Trent was a player we had interest in last season," Nolan said. "We were looking for a veteran quarterback with experience that could help mentor Alex Smith. Trent fits the bill on both counts and we are excited to have him with the 49ers."
The 49ers assume the remainder of Dilfer's contract, with scheduled annual salaries of $1 million for each of the next three seasons. He becomes the team's backup quarterback, behind Smith and ahead of Jesse Palmer and Cody Pickett.
Dilfer underwent surgery in February to repair a partially torn patellar tendon in his right knee. He is not expected to be cleared for practice until at least June. He reported to his new team for its first full-squad mini-camp.
A 12-year veteran from Fresno State, Dilfer was drafted sixth overall by the Buccaneers in 1994. He spent six seasons with Tampa Bay before winning a Super Bowl in 2000, his only season with the Ravens. He spent four seasons with the Seahawks before getting traded to the Browns.
The 49ers consider Dilfer a player who has a future in coaching. He is expected to have a positive influence on Smith's career. Smith was the first player chosen in last year's draft and started seven games as a rookie. He struggled, with 11 interceptions and just one touchdown pass for the year.
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