49ers notes: Hall of Famer Jim Brown visits, injury report, etc.


49ers notes: Hall of Famer Jim Brown visits, injury report, etc.

BOARDMAN, Ohio -- Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown paid a visit to the 49ers' team hotel, where he spent more than an hour in the dining room chatting and posing for pictures with players and coaches."I learned more about him, his story, how he saw the game, how he sees the game right now," 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said Monday afternoon. "He loves football. And he has a deep, abiding respect for it. He's someone who wants to see others benefit from what he knows, not hoarding that knowledge but sharing it.
"I think he comes from a unique perspective. He's seen a lot, as it relates to football, how it relates to life. Those are things he's most interested in passing on to younger players, younger coaches."Team owner John York invited Brown, who was in the area, to visit the 49ers on their trip to the Youngstown area. Brown arrived at 12:45 p.m. Monday and sat at a table, which was always occupied as different players and coaches engaged him in conversation."All the running backs made a point to shake hands and take a picture and ask questions," Harbaugh said.Brown, 76, who was first-team All Pro in eight of his nine professional seasons, played his entire career with the Cleveland Browns.INJURY REPORT: Linebacker Patrick Willis and nose tackle Isaac Sopoaga are doing well one day after both players exited Sunday's game against the Minnesota Vikings with apparent leg injuries. Both players underwent X-rays after the game."It turned out good for both of those guys," Harbaugh said.Willis was seen walking around the team hotel with no problems.BACK TO WORK: The 49ers, who were upset losers to the Vikings, hope to avoid a two-game losing streak with a game Sunday against the New York Jets. The 49ers will spend this week practicing at Youngstown State.Harbaugh addressed the general feeling that the 49ers should've rolled over the Vikings on Sunday."It's not our mindset, but I sense this from people who live in a mythical, magical fantasy world of just expecting that we'd win," Harbaugh said. "It just doesn't work that way. Your enemy has a vote on that, and they played a very good football game. And we got beat."We got to bounce back. That's on us to work and prepare and, yeah, we go in with confidence that we expect to win any team, anywhere, any time, any place. But that confidence comes from preparation, and we got to do a good job of that again this week because we'll be going up against another very talented, well-coached football team in another hostile environment."MAKING FRIENDS: Harbaugh and many 49ers players visited the Akron Children's Hospital Mahoning Valley for a second year in a row. Harbaugh was wearing a necklace that a young patient gave him."A young guy over the hospital named Tyler, he gave me this beautiful necklace with a picture of (former Ohio State coach) Woody Hayes on the front and a little biography of coach Hayes on the back," Harbaugh said. "I admired Tyler's necklace last year, and he got this for me this year. He had it waiting for."Harbaugh reported Tyler's leukemia is in remission -- "wonder news and a wonderful gift," Harbaugh said.PALMER CLAIMED: The 49ers will add a wide receiver to their practice squad on Tuesday after the Indianapolis Colts signed 49ers practice-squad receiver Nathan Palmer.Teams are allowed to sign players off other teams' practice squad for their own 53-man roster with no compensation. Palmer becomes the second undrafted rookie wide receiver in 49ers camp to hook on with another team. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed Chris Owusu last week. The other undrafted rookie in camp was Brian Tyms, who is on the Miami Dolphins' practice squad."Going back to the very first press conference we had of the rookie minicamp, I noticed on that day we had probably the finest group of young wide receivers I've ever seen at a rookie camp," Harbaugh said.

Report: 49ers free agent ILB signing with rival Seahawks

Report: 49ers free agent ILB signing with rival Seahawks

Michael Wilhoite has spent his whole five-year NFL career with the San Francisco 49ers.

But now the free agent inside linebacker is reportedly switching sides in the NFC West rivalry. Wilhoite is set to sign with the Seattle Seahawks, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network. 

Terms of the deal are unknown at this time. 

Wilhoite, 30, played in all 16 games last season for the 49ers, starting in only six. In 2016 he recorded 55 tackles, 30 less than 2015 in four less games, and forced one fumble. 

After earning a promotion from the 49ers' practice squad in 2012, Wilhoite's career in the Bay Area comes to an end with 268 tackles and three interceptions in 65 games. 

NFL owners mull cutting regular-season OT to 10 minutes

NFL owners mull cutting regular-season OT to 10 minutes

NEW YORK -- NFL owners will consider proposals next week to cut regular-season overtime from 15 minutes to 10; eliminate players leaping over the line on kick plays; and expansion of coaches' challenges and what can be reviewed by officials.

In what promises to be a busy annual meeting next week in Phoenix that will include discussing the Raiders' potential relocation from Oakland to Las Vegas, the 32 owners also will vote on changing the mechanics on replay reviews and other items intended to reduce downtime during games.

The Eagles proposed four rules changes, including abolishing the leaping techniques that league football operations director Troy Vincent said Thursday "don't belong in the game."

Seattle and Buffalo co-authored a proposal allowing a coach to challenge any officiating decision, whether a foul is called or not.

"That is a significant change to our current replay rule and it is something that will be on the floor and will be debated next week," NFL officiating chief Dean Blandino said.

Another major change would be the reduction of overtime in-season; the extra period in the playoffs would remain at 15 minutes. The powerful competition committee, of which Vincent and Blandino are members, believed it's a player safety issue, noting that number of snaps for games going to OT - especially deep into the overtime - is excessive. Especially if a team has a quick turnaround.

"We don't know where a team is going to be playing the next week, it could be four days later," said committee chairman Rich McKay, president of the Atlanta Falcons. "We felt we should put an end to it. We don't think it will lead to more ties. Could it? It could, but we are not concerned with that."

As for changing the format of overtime to ensure both teams always get a possession - a popular topic after how the Super Bowl ended - Blandino said the league's wants to keep the element of sudden death in the extra period.

The "leaper rule" has taken some priority among competition committee members, the players' union and coaches. Vincent said coaches have begun scheming how to defense it, which can "create a real safety issue."

"It is really in the best interest of the game" to outlaw leaping on kicks," Vincent added.

McKay noted that the NCAA is in the process of passing a similar ban on the technique.

During the meetings that run from Sunday to Wednesday, the teams will be shown plays the competition committee believes should result in suspensions or ejections. Game officials already have had the leeway to eject players, but it rarely has happened; there were three in 2016.

"They don't happen very often, let's give the players credit," McKay said. "We have 40,000 plays in a year. We'll show a tape that will have four or five plays that would warrant suspension. This is not a widespread situation."

Added Vincent, a former NFL defensive back: "When you see the plays, they are catastrophic. We had two players who did not return for the season. They are high-impact plays that belong out of the game. It will be a real point of emphasis this season."