Martin getting late start in 49ers' center competition

Martin getting late start in 49ers' center competition
August 1, 2014, 3:30 pm
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Marcus Martin was the 70th overall selection in the 2014 NFL Draft. (AP)

SANTA CLARA -– The competition at center to replace veteran Jonathan Goodwin has not started.

Thus far, Daniel Kilgore, who enters his fourth NFL season, is running unopposed.

Rookie Marcus Martin, whom the 49ers selected in the third round of the draft, has yet to practice after reporting to training camp with an ankle sprain. He took part in individual drills on Thursday, and he’s expected to be cleared to practice on Sunday.

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Coach Jim Harbaugh said he is not counting out Martin despite his late start.

“He’s put in a lot of good work since the time he was drafted with the OTAs and the minicamps,” 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said. “He’s been outstanding in the meetings. (I) sat in the meeting yesterday. He was making calls and understanding it. So it’s a little later start than he would have liked, but he’ll be back in there soon. It’s possible to get caught up.”

Kilgore remains the front-runner to win the job, which opened when the 49ers did not offer Goodwin a contract to return. Goodwin signed recently with the New Orleans Saints.