--Long-snapper Brian Jennings was excited this offseason because he was certain that for the first time in his tenure with the club, the 49ers would not be making any changes at kicker or punter, which also doubles as the team's holder on kicks.
Well, not so fast. The 49ers recently signed veteran punter Tom Rouen to compete with two-year pro Andy Lee, who had a solid season last year. Rouen, a 13-year player, averaged 41.6 yards a punt last year with a net average of 35.0.
Lee set a team record with 107 punts. He also averaged 41.6 yards with a 36.3 net average.
--Receiver Derrick Hamilton has not practiced with the 49ers since sustaining a torn left ACL in May 2005. He was not cleared to take part in any of the team's 11-on-11 work during the offseason program, yet the day after the 49ers' final minicamp, he played basketball in a charity game. Hamilton threw down a dunk when the 49ers basketballers defeated the Raiders.
Coach Mike Nolan said afterward that he knew nothing about Hamilton playing basketball. Hamilton spent last season on PUP and underwent a follow-up surgery early this year.
"Usually if a guy is not cleared, they have a policy to keep them from doing things like a basketball game," 49ers spokesman Aaron Salkin said. Nolan said in the future he will make sure the club's policy is communicated properly.
Hamilton's agent, Philip Williams, said he did not know his client had played in a basketball game, but trusts his judgment. "If he did, I'm sure he wasn't out there putting himself in jeopardy," Williams said.
Prior to Hamilton's injury 13 months ago, he was in position to be a contributor with the 49ers in his second season in the league. Now, the club's receiver corps is going to be tough to crack with Antonio Bryant, Arnaz Battle, Brandon Williams, Bryan Gilmore, Jason McAddley, Rasheed Marshall, Marcus Maxwell and Otis Amey.
"The whole process in some ways could end up being good for Derrick," his agent said. "It all shows that you can't take anything for granted, and you have to focus on what you got to do. From every report I've gotten from the 49ers, Derrick has done everything they expect from him. Now, he just has to get on the field and prove himself."
--The 49ers will have training camp at their Santa Clara, Calif., practice facility for the fourth year. And with the addition of a synthetic turf practice field, it is doubtful the club will move moving training camp any time in the foreseeable future.
This summer, the 49ers have scheduled nine practice sessions that are open to the general public.
"We are happy to once again offer our fans a unique way to see the 49ers in a fun setting," said David Peart, vice president of sales and marketing. "Camp is an exciting way for our faithful fans and players to connect. Fans can expect a wonderful experience as they watch the team practice on their own turf."
During the open practices members of the Gold Rush cheerleading team and mascot "Sourdough Sam" also will be in attendance. Participants will have the opportunity to take pictures with one of the team's Super Bowl trophies.
--Could it be that the 49ers are finally ready to unveil plans for a new stadium? A team spokesman said things are getting close, and an announcement on a new stadium to replace dilapidated Candlestick Park (or Monster Park, as it's now called) could be coming around the start of the regular season.
QUOTE TO NOTE
"He's handled himself very well. He's a hard worker. He's here early in the morning and he's the last to leave. He lifts with the big guys. He's not a prima donna. He's a football player" -- 49ers coach Mike Nolan on QB Alex Smith, who will enter his second season in the league.
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