Dawson 'thrilled' to join 49ers

Dawson 'thrilled' to join 49ers
March 19, 2013, 1:45 pm
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Phil Dawson was a Pro Bowler last season after making 29 of 31 field goals, including all 20 attempts over 40 yards. (AP)

PHOENIX -- The 49ers increased their range Tuesday night, as free agent Pro Bowl kicker Phil Dawson agreed to terms of a contract, he revealed on Twitter.


Dawson, 38, who played the first 14 seasons of his NFL career with the Cleveland Browns, replaces recently released veteran David Akers.

Akers struggled last season after setting an NFL record with 44 made field goals in 2011. Akers missed more field-goal attempts than anyone in the NFL in 2012, making just 29 of 42 attempts.

Akers was particularly inefficient outside of 40 yards, where he made just nine of 19 attempts.

Dawson, however, was perfect on long kicks. He made 20 of 20 from beyond 40 yards, including a remarkable 7-for-7 on tries from 50-plus yards, with a long of 53.

He missed just two field goals the entire season, going 29 of 31 for 93.5 percent. One of his misses was blocked. He was named to the AFC Pro Bowl team. In his career, Dawson has an 84-percent accuracy rating.

Dawson rejoins 49ers special teams coordinator Brad Seely, who coached Dawson in 2009 and 2010 with the Browns.

The 49ers strongly considered veteran Lawrence Tynes, who kicked for two New York Giants Super Bowl-winning teams, a source said. Ultimately, the 49ers decided to go with the player with whom Seely had a background.