49ers DB excused to watch girlfriend qualify for Olympic final


49ers DB excused to watch girlfriend qualify for Olympic final

Programming note: Tune in tonight when 49ers running back Frank Gore goes 1-on-1 with Insider Matt Maiocco on Chronicle Live at 9 p.m., only on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area!

SANTA CLARA -- A little more than an hour into practice Monday, 49ers safety Cory Nelms jogged off the practice field.When he returned a short time later, he had an added bounce to his step.
Nelms ran off during the middle of practice to watch a live stream of the women's 400-meter hurdles at the London Olympics. He watched a computer in the office of Mike Chasanoff, manager of public relations, as his girlfriend, T'erea Brown, qualified for a spot on Wednesday's final with a personal-record time 54.21 seconds"She got out good," Nelms said. "It seemed like she was falling back, but she maintained and ran her race. She PR'd yesterday and PR'd again today. She's peaking. She's definitely on the right track."Nelms, who is fighting for a spot on the 49ers' 53-man roster, did not have the luxury of traveling to London to watch Brown, 22, whom he met 6 years ago as members of the University of Miami (Fla.) track team."I wanted to go, but I'm in a situation where I need to stay here and compete for a spot on this team and try to help this team," he said.Before practice, 49ers defensive backs coach Ed Donatell approached Nelms to ask if he wanted permission to duck out of practice long enough to watch the semifinal."I said, 'Definitely,'" Nelms said. "I guess he got permission (from coach Jim Harbaugh) and said it would be OK."Brown won the 2011 NCAA championship. She finished third at the U.S. Track and Field Trials in Eugene. She arrived in London with a previous personal best of 54.81. Nelms said she will have to run 53 seconds to get onto the podium. He believes she has the ability to bring home a medal.Nelms has plenty of his own hurdles to clear.He is in his second year in 49ers camp after going undrafted in 2011. Nelms spent all of last season on the 49ers' practice squad after being honored with the Thomas Herrion Award. The honor goes to the rookie or first-year player that best takes advantage of every opportunity and turned it into a positive to make a dream turn into reality."It's kind of like appreciation you get from the team," Nelms said. "You come out and work hard every day and you play whistle to whistle. That award showed me that the team appreciates what I do every day. I'm going to continue to do that."Nelms played cornerback last season. This year, he has transitioned to safety -- a spot he believes is a better fit for his physical style of play."The coaches are really helping me out, helping me learn the new position," he said. "I'm learning the defense well. We're just trying to get better. Everybody is supporting me and helping me out, so I thank them for that."

Reports: Former 49ers wide receiver to visit Bills


Reports: Former 49ers wide receiver to visit Bills

Aquan Boldin is looking for a new football home.

And the former 49ers wide receiver is visiting with the Bills on Monday, according to multiple reports.

Boldin started all 16 games with the Lions last season, recording 67 catches for 584 yards and eight touchdowns.

From 2013 to 2015 with the 49ers, he racked up 237 receptions, 3030 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns.

The three-time Pro Bowler will turn 37 years old in October.

Boldin entered the NFL as the 54th overall pick in the 2003 draft.

Taking a closer look at Ryan's criticism of Shanahan


Taking a closer look at Ryan's criticism of Shanahan

There is no shortage of blame to go around for the Atlanta Falcons’ collapse in Super Bowl 51.

The Falcons built a 28-3 lead in the middle of the third quarter and let it slip away, ultimately falling to the New England Patriots, 34-28, in overtime.

Matt Ryan voiced one previously undisclosed factor in the collapse this week in an interview with Pete Prisco of CBS Sports, pointing the finger at the new coach of the 49ers.

Kyle Shanahan has been the focus of a lot of the blame, but critique from the league MVP was a new one.

The Falcons quarterback faulted his former offensive coordinator for taking too much time to relay the play calls. Ryan said he did not have enough time to change any of the plays – presumably checking out of called pass plays to run the ball.

Here’s what Ryan told Prisco:

"Kyle's play calls -- he would take time to get stuff in. As I was getting it, you're looking at the clock and you're talking 16 seconds before it cuts out. You don't have a lot of time to say, 'There's 16 seconds, no, no, no, we're not going to do that. Hey, guys, we're going to line up and run this.' You're talking about breaking the huddle at seven seconds if you do something along the lines.

"With the way Kyle's system was set up, he took more time to call plays and we shift and motion a lot more than we did with (former coordinator) Dirk (Koetter). You couldn't get out of stuff like that. We talk about being the most aggressive team in football. And I'm all for it. But there's also winning time. You're not being aggressive not running it there."

The 49ers can point to mismanagement of the clock for their own Super Bowl heartbreak. The 49ers’ offense had the perfect play call at the perfect time against the Baltimore Ravens late in Super Bowl XLVII.

But with the play clock striking :00, coach Jim Harbaugh was forced to call a timeout from the sideline. A split-second later, the ball was snapped and it appeared the quarterback run would have easily ended up with Colin Kaepernick in the end zone.

Much like after the 49ers’ loss, the Falcons left plenty of room for second-guessing.

Two of Shanahan’s plays calls, which directly led to the collapse, will forever be scrutinized.

The first came with 8:31 remaining in regulation and the Falcons holding a 28-12 lead. On third and 1 from the Atlanta 36, Shanahan did not remain conservative with an expected run play. He swung for the fence.

Receiver Aldrick Robinson, whom the 49ers added this offseason as a free-agent pickup, was breaking free past the Patriots secondary for what could have been a touchdown. But just as Ryan was unloading, New England linebacker Dont’a Hightower hit him and forced the fumble. Running back Devonta Freeman whiffed on blitz pickup, which would have provided Ryan with enough time to target Robinson deep.

Ryan’s explanation does not appear applicable on this play, though. In watching the replay, the Falcons broke the huddle with more than 25 seconds remaining on the play clock and the snap occurred with :15 to spare.

The other questionable sequence came after the Falcons – leading by eight points -- got to the New England 22-yard line with less than five minutes to play. The Falcons lost 1 yard on a run play on first down.

On second down, Ryan was sacked for a 12-yard loss. Before that play, the Falcons broke the huddle with :19 on the play clock. The snap occurred with :04 remaining. The game clock was running, so the Falcons had reason to attempt to burn as much clock as possible.

In the fourth quarter, the Falcons never seemed rushed to get off a play. The closest they came to delay-of-game penalties were when they snapped the ball with :04 on the one play and :03 another time. The majority of their snaps occurred with :10 or more seconds to spare.

If the Falcons were guilty of anything when it came to the play clock, it was that the offense did not waste more time. After New England pulled to within 28-9 late in the third quarter, the Falcons ran only six offensive plays while the game clock was running.

On those six plays, the Falcons snapped the ball with :13, :09, :14, :20, :13 and :04 remaining on the play clock. If they’d snapped the ball with one second remaining each time, they could have shortened the game by 1 minute, 7 seconds. The Patriots scored the game-tying touchdown with :57 remaining in regulation.