Lynch promises 49ers will be aggressive in free agency: 'Stay awake'

Lynch promises 49ers will be aggressive in free agency: 'Stay awake'

INDIANAPOLIS – Before the start of the new league year next Thursday, the 49ers hope to make some deals with some of their own scheduled free agents.

The 49ers have 18 players scheduled for unrestricted free agency, including quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who is expected to opt out of his contract. While the 49ers are expected to take things slow with Kaepernick, general manager John Lynch said there is some urgency to get other deals completed.

“Some of those are in the process of going on right now,” Lynch said. “Hopefully, we see some things in the next couple of days.”

Among the 49ers’ top scheduled free agents are kicker Phil Dawson, and wide receivers Jeremy Kerley and Quinton Patton.

The 49ers have already invested more in veteran free agents than a year ago. The 49ers last week signed defensive tackle Earl Mitchell to a four-year, $16 million contract. Mitchell became available when the Miami Dolphins recently released him.

The start of the free-agent signing period under former 49ers general manager Trent Baalke was usually a slow time for the franchise. Lynch promised a more-aggressive approach when nearly $90 million in cap room.

“Stay awake,” Lynch said.

The 49ers want to fill needs in free agency, so the organization can avoid the shackles of drafting for need.

“We need players and we’ve got to get ourselves in a situation with certain pieces that we made priorities and certain type of guys so we don’t go into this draft saying, ‘We have to have this,’” Lynch said.

“It’s the best way to go in and take the best player, but sometimes you can’t do that. You need certain positions and we don’t want to be in that position everywhere. So there are certain things we have high on our priority list and get accomplished. And we’re going to be aggressive in getting those done.”

49ERS FREE AGENTS
Unrestricted

--QB Colin Kaepernick*
--QB Blaine Gabbert
--QB Christian Ponder
--QB Thad Lewis
--RB Shaun Draughn
--RB DuJuan Harris
--WR Jeremy Kerley
--WR Quinton Patton
--WR Rod Streater
--TE Jim Dray
--OL Andrew Gardner
--K Phil Dawson
--DT Glenn Dorsey
--DT Tony Jerod-Eddie
--DL Chris Jones
--LB Nick Bellore
--LB Gerald Hodges
--LB Michael Wilhoite

Restricted
--OL Andrew Tiller
--DB Marcus Cromartie
--CB Chris Davis

Exclusive rights
--DL Mike Purcell (tendered)
--LB Carl Bradford (tendered)

*-Expected to opt out of contract.

Report: 49ers strongly considering QB at No. 2

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Report: 49ers strongly considering QB at No. 2

General manager John Lynch and the 49ers have created the desired intrigue about what the club will do with the No. 2 overall pick in this week’s NFL draft.

The team remains “open for business,” in the words of Lynch, to trade the second pick. If the 49ers are unable to find a trade partner, the team can do any number of different ways with that pick. The first round of the draft is scheduled for Thursday evening.

After edge-rusher Myles Garrett, widely projected to go to the Cleveland Browns with the No. 1 overall pick, there does not seem to be much separating the next dozen prospects on the board at a number of different positions.

Now, there is buzz the 49ers could go with a quarterback – likely, Mitchell Trubisky of North Carolina – with the No. 2 pick. That possibility gained steam Monday morning with a report from Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, citing “several sources,” that the 49ers are “strongly considering” selecting a quarterback with the second pick.

One league source last week told NBC Sports Bay Area some around the league believe the 49ers would draft Trubisky or Stanford defensive lineman Solomon Thomas.

“If the 49ers are waiting on Kirk Cousins, just remember that Trubisky is a better prospect now than Cousins was coming out of the 2012 draft,” the source said.

Cousins, who is set to play his second consecutive year as Washington’s franchise player, was a fourth-round selection under then-coach Mike Shanahan, New 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan was his father’s offensive coordinator when Washington drafted Cousins.

Lynch has been open in his scouting and praise of this year’s draft class. He has attended workouts of top quarterback prospects: Trubisky, Deshaun Watson (Clemson), DeShone Kizer (Notre Dame), Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech) and Davis Webb (Cal).

"I think most of this quarterback class should be later down the line, whether it's first round or second round,” NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock said recently. ESPN’s Mel Kipier and Todd McShay had Trubisky as the first quarterback selected by the Browns at No. 12 overall.

“I think these guys are somewhat getting a bad rap,” Lynch said at the NFL scouting combine. “You turn on the film, and there’s a lot to like.”

The 49ers head into this week’s draft with Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley as the only two quarterbacks on the roster.

The 49ers have shown no interest in re-signing any of the top three quarterbacks on the team’s roster last season: Colin Kaepernick, Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder. Each of those players remains unsigned.

49ers release Coffee after reinstating RB off retired list

49ers release Coffee after reinstating RB off retired list

Running back Glen Coffee, who walked away from the 49ers during training camp before his second NFL season, was reinstated Friday off the reserve-retired list.

As part of the same transaction wire released by the NFL office, the 49ers released Coffee, making him a free agent.

After seven seasons away from the game, Coffee is attempting a comeback, his agent told NBC Sports Bay Area on Saturday.

“I can tell you, he’s in great shape,” agent Ray Oubre said. “The man doesn’t have a six-pack, he’s got a 12-pack. He’s been waiting for the right time to hopefully get a workout with someone and show what he can do.

“He had a calling, and right now he feels like it’s his time to show what he can do. He explained to me, ‘I can do things now that I couldn’t do when I was initially with the 49ers.’ That’s the kind of shape he’s in.”

Coffee, who turns 30 on May 1, was a third-round draft pick (No. 74 overall) of the 49ers in 2009. He was the sixth running back selected in that year's draft. Coffee appeared in 14 games as a rookie and carried 83 times for 226 yards and one touchdown. He also caught 11 passes for 78 yards.

During training camp the next year as his teammates were exiting the locker room for the practice field in August 2010, Coffee cut the tape from his shoes and left the team's Santa Clara practice facility. He later informed then-coach Mike Singletary of his decision to stop playing football. Coffee said he believed God had a bigger plan for him.

Coffee was a specialist in the Sixth Battalion of the Army Rangers after enlisting in 2013. He is no longer active, Oubre said.

“He’s been training several months,” Oubre said. “The rigors of the Army Rangers, he was already in shape. He’s taking it to another level now. He’s been training for more than four months.

“He feels like he served and now the time is right. He’s in a good place. He understands, you can’t play football forever and you can’t do any one thing forever. He’s in a place right now that he wants to use his God-given ability as a football player.”

Coffee turned pro after his junior season at Alabama. In his final college season, Coffee rushed for 1,383 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Coffee has been training under Johnny Jackson at JDPI Sports Performance in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Oubre said he will be in contact with all 32 NFL teams to see if there’s any interest in bringing in Coffee for workouts. He might also hold an open workout for any interested teams.