Edwards ailing, 49ers re-sign practice receiver


Edwards ailing, 49ers re-sign practice receiver

SANTA CLARA -- The regular season has been a disaster for 49ers receiver Braylon Edwards. So, now, his focus is on getting healthy, contributing and rebuilding his NFL stock during the playoffs.In a related matter, the 49ers released safety Mark LeGree from the practice squad.Huh?The 49ers re-signed receiver John Matthews to the practice squad on Tuesday. Edwards (kneeshoulder) and Michael Crabtree (foot) have been limited during practices for most of the season. As the club manages the health of their top two receivers, Matthews gives the team another player who can run routes on the practice field.RELATED: Banged-up Edwards focuses on playoffs
Edwards has not been 100 percent since sustaining torn cartilage in his right knee early in a Week 2 loss against the Dallas Cowboys. The past three games he has also been managing a left shoulder sprain, he said Monday.Ted Ginn, Kyle Williams and Brett Swain are the other receivers on the 49ers' 53-man roster. Swain has been inactive since Edwards returned to the playing field.Matthews spent five weeks of the practice squad earlier this season before he was cut to make room for LeGree. Matthews rejoins rookie Joe Hastings as receivers on the practice squad.The main duty of players on the practice squad is to run plays of the upcoming opponent to get the first-team defense prepared for what they are expected to face.Matthews, who played for Jim Harbaugh at the University of San Diego, has previously spent time with the Indianapolis and Jacksonville practice squads.

Ward injures hamstring under team supervision, placed on PUP


Ward injures hamstring under team supervision, placed on PUP

SANTA CLARA – Safety Jimmie Ward was placed on the physically-unable-to-perform list to open training camp with a hamstring injury, the 49ers announced Friday morning.

General manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan stated on Thursday that all of their players were healthy and no players would be headed to PUP or the non-football injury list.

But that was before the 49ers were scheduled to have their conditioning test. Ward sustained the injury on Thursday during the team's conditioning test. The team lists him as "week to week."

He can be activated to begin practice at any time. Ward is also eligible to begin the regular season on the PUP list. Any player who opens the regular season on PUP is ineligible for the first six weeks of the season.

Ward is expected to be one of the key members of the 49ers' defense from the free safety position. His role is dubbed "The Eraser," fellow safety Eric Reid said, because of his role as a playmaker in the secondary. However, one of the major questions about Ward is his ability to remain healthy through the rigors of an NFL season.

Ward missed eight games as a rookie due to a foot injury. Last year, he sat out five games due to a shoulder injury.

Hyde 'flipped a switch' this offseason, sets lofty goal in contract year

Hyde 'flipped a switch' this offseason, sets lofty goal in contract year

SANTA CLARA – Carlos Hyde has been the 49ers' unchallenged starter since the organization allowed Frank Gore to leave in free agency after the 2014 season.

Finally, he has been challenged.

The 49ers drafted Joe Williams in the fourth round, signed veteran Tim Hightower and acquired Kapri Bibbs in a trade. Moreover, Hyde appears to be challenging himself, too.

“My goal is to be the No. 1 rushing running back in this league,” Hyde said. “I feel like I have the best opportunity to do that now with this new staff.”

General manager John Lynch said he has noticed Hyde “flipped a switch” in the offseason. Hyde remained in the Bay Area to use the 49ers’ facilities to work out and eat at the team’s cafeteria. At one point, he even asked coach Kyle Shanahan about being included on special teams.

Hyde reported to training camp Thursday at 228 pounds – the least he has weighed since his high-school days, he said. Hyde could be a good fit for Shanahan’s running scheme.

“It’s outside zone, which is downhill. I’m a downhill back. I feel like I fit the scheme very well,” said Hyde, who enters the final year of his contract.

Hyde had career-best totals of 988 yards and six touchdowns last season with a 4.6-yard average. Although the 49ers could use more a multi-pronged approach at running back, Hyde could be set up for a career year heading into free agency.

“I ran into him in the hall and he looks tremendous,” Lynch said. “He really has dedicated himself. He’s changed his body type this offseason and that to me at the least bit shows a commitment. There’s those stories, but we’re excited to see this whole thing as we take the next step.”