Gore, Rogers, Lee react to Pro Bowl honors


Gore, Rogers, Lee react to Pro Bowl honors

Running back Frank Gore worked hard to return from a broken hip that sidelined him for the final five games of last season.He received a new contract. He broke the 49ers' all-time rushing record on the same day the 49ers clinched the NFC West title for the first time in his career. And, on Tuesday, he was named to the Pro Bowl for the third time in his seven-year career.
"It's a blessing, especially coming back from missing five games and coming back this year to have a lot of success with team and myself, it's a blessing," Gore said."Coming off my injury. I was hungry to show people I can play this game like I did before."Gore has already rushed for 1,202 yards with one game remaining. It's the second-largest single-season total of his career.
Gore said he always believed the 49ers had the talent. This season, they also had the coaching with Jim Harbaugh and his staff."I got to give it up to our coaches. We have a great coach, Coach Harbaugh, and great guys around him on the coaching staff," Gore said. "We always had the talent and now we have the right people in front of us to lead us. We believe in the coaches and we believe in ourselves. We're going out and having fun and it's paying off." Carlos Rogers didn't have many options after he watched as other cornerback secured big contracts after the lockout. He landed with the 49ers on a one-year contract.And, now, he would like to cash that into a multi-year deal to remain with the 49ers. After all, he is having the most fun of his NFL career he said. But business is business."It's up to the general managers, the owners and my agent to get that done," Rogers said.Rogers is not likely to sign a new contract with the 49ers before the start of free agency in the spring. And it's possible that he priced himself out of the 49ers' market with his best NFL season.Rogers said he always considered himself a good cover man. He always considered himself a smart player who studied the opposition and knew the game. But what the difference this season has been Rogers' hands.Rogers has six interceptions on the season. In his previous six NFL seasons (all with the Washington Redskins), Rogers had just eight interceptions."Any time you catch the ball, that takes points off the board or you can put your team in a situation to get points," Rogers said. "That's big. That adds a lot to game. I've always covered and been a guy to recognize what's going on. I always tackled pretty good. But I dropped interceptions. And that separates you from being an average corner or a good cover guy." Punter Andy Lee was selected to make his third trip to the Pro Bowl. And he'll be going there with a bunch of teammates.Well, or maybe not . . ."Hopefully, we won't be there," Lee said. "Hopefully, we'll be in the Super Bowl."The Pro Bowl is being played the Sunday before the Super Bowl. So teams who advance to the Super Bowl will not send any representatives to the all-star game."It's an honor," Lee said. "It's definitely not something you can expect. It's not something that honors just myself, it honors my punt team. I can't get this just on average, but on net average and the whole team contributes to that. The coverage guys and Brian (Jennings), the long-snapper."When asked if this has been his best season, Lee answered, "I've had good years before, but we can categorize it as the best because of the numbers and it's best season I've had. We're going to the playoffs, so I'd say so."

Reid: National anthem protest accomplished goal of awareness

Reid: National anthem protest accomplished goal of awareness

SANTA CLARA – Safety Eric Reid and linebacker Eli Harold, who joined Colin Kaepernick in kneeling during the national anthem last season, will not continue the protest this season.

Reid said Wednesday they achieved their goal of bringing attention to racial inequality in the United States.

“When we started doing that, our goal was to open up the floor to conversation. I believe we’ve achieved that goal,” Reid said. “So now we just want to move forward and just partner with people that’s trying to make a change.

“We accomplished that goal. People talked about it. I think we raised a lot of awareness about issues in this country. And now it’s time to move on to just affecting change.”

Reid and Harold are back with the 49ers, while Kaepernick remains a free agent. The 49ers have expressed no interest in retaining Kaepernick after opting to sign free-agent quarterback Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley, instead.

“I stay in touch with him,” Reid said of Kaepernick. “I’m rooting for him. Obviously, he isn’t on a team, yet, but I’m rooting for him but hopefully he gets that call after the draft.

“It’s surprising. You see some of the other quarterbacks that have been signed around the league and why he hasn’t been, it’s just unfortunate.”

When asked if thought Kaepernick was paying the price for his protest, Reid answered, “I think so. It’s unfortunate, it’s sad. People want to shy away from him because of media, PR reasons.

“You’re doing something to better the world. I mean, the guy got a plane sent to Somalia to help with the famine there. He’s been doing things that if it were anybody else in a different situation without the anthem (protest), they’d be praising him and giving him awards for it.”


Coming off Achilles injury, Bowman returns to 49ers practice at full speed

Coming off Achilles injury, Bowman returns to 49ers practice at full speed

SANTA CLARA – NaVorro Bowman, who sustained a season-ending torn Achilles in Week 4 of the 2016 season, has been a full participant as the 49ers return to the practice field this week.

Bowman worked with the first team at middle linebacker Wednesday and appeared to move at top speed as the 49ers went through the second day of on-field workouts at a voluntary minicamp.

The 49ers, under new coach Kyle Shanahan, are allowed an extra voluntary minicamp as part of their offseason program. Bowman's return to the practice field was the highlight as the 49ers enter their third-week of the offseason program.

In other notes:

--The 49ers had tryouts with three unsigned veteran players: cornerback Steve Williams, and offensive linemen Tim Barnes and Kitt O’Brien.

--Wide receiver DeAndre Carter made the best catch of the day on a deep throw from quarterback Matt Barkley. Carter beat Williams on the reception.

--Defensive lineman Arik Armstead, who is a candidate to play the “Leo” position, was held out of competitive drills as he continues to recovery from surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

--Ronald Blair lined up at the “Leo” position with the first-team defense and beat No. 2 right tackle Garry Gilliam for a sack in the “non-contract” drills. Aaron Lynch was at the “Leo” position with the second team.

--Tank Carradine lined up at the 5-technique, which is a position where the 49ers could target Stanford’s Solomon Thomas with the No. 2 overall pick.

--Kyle Juszczyk showed the versatility that prompted the 49ers to make him the highest-paid fullback in the league with several pass receptions during the 90-minute practice.

--Rashard Robinson and Dontae Johnson lined up at the cornerbacks with the first-team defense. Robinson made a leaping interception of a Brian Hoyer deep sideline pass against Rashad Ross during 7-on-7 drills.

--Hoyer and receiver Pierre Garçon teamed up for a 20-yard completion on the opening play of the 11-on-11 period.

--Wide receiver Bruce Ellington, who spent all of last season on injured reserve, did not practice due to a soft-tissue injury not related to his hamstring injury of a year ago.

--Offensive lineman Jeremy Zuttah (soft tissue), tight end Je’Ron Hamm (leg), running back Raheem Mostert (soft tissue), linebacker Eli Harold (toe) and tight end Blake Bell (cut forehead) did not practice.