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Giants Fans Pack City for World Series Parade

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Giants Fans Pack City for World Series Parade

Nov. 3, 2010GIANTS PAGE GIANTS VIDEOWORLD SERIES PAGE

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Tens of thousands of baseball fans flocked to downtown Wednesday to toast the San Francisco Giants' World Series championship and see their hometown heroes take a victory lap in a ticker-tape parade reminiscent of the one held when the team moved west from New York 52 years ago.

"This is Christmas, New Year's and your first-born all rolled into one," said Steve Williams, 51, an usher at AT&T Park as he gathered with Giants employees at the start of the parade in the financial district. "I'm on cloud nine."

Fans crowded the sidewalks and flooded Civic Center to salute a team of self-described misfits and castoffs. The die-hards showed up before dawn to stake out spots ahead of the festivity. Many skipped work and pulled their children out of school so they could catch what they said was a once-in-a-lifetime celebration.

"I want to see all the hometown heroes and share the smiles of all the fans who've been waiting their entire lives for this," said Teddy Hutcherson, 31.

Under a sunny sky, confetti rained on team members and civic dignitaries as they rode down the parade route in convertibles and cable cars on wheels. Street lamps were festooned with orange and black the team's colors. Large banners proclaimed the Giants as this year's World Series champions, as if the crowd needed to be reminded the team had won baseball's highest honor.

Marching bands, floats and costumed mascots added to the street party.

"I've never seen anything like this is my life," center-fielder Andres Torres said as he greeted fans behind a barricade. "The parade has been amazing."

Fans of Brian Wilson, the quirky reliever whose facial hair has become a local obsession, paid tribute to him by painting beards on their faces and wearing T-shirts that read, "Fear the Beard." He stoked the crowd by jumping up and down and giving people high-fives.

Slugger Aubrey Huff, who threatened to unveil his lucky red thong at the parade, made good on his words by waving it at fans. They roared with deafening approval.

At the Civic Center, fans climbed into trees and streetlights to get a better view, the police unable to reach most of them over the crush of bodies. The scent of marijuana wafted in the air even though a ballot measure aimed at legalizing pot was defeated on Election Day.

Mayor Gavin Newsom was giddy as he described growing up a "fanatical Giants fan" and dreaming about playing for the team one day.

"I thought I'd see (a World Series championship) in my lifetime, but never thought I'd see it as mayor," Newsom said. "It's incomprehensible that this happened."

He even swept aside talk of politics when asked about his victory in the state's lieutenant governor's race on Tuesday.

"Nobody here cares about that, this puts it all in perspective," he said.

The parade moved from the financial district, then down Market Street to the Civic Center where Newsom presented the team a key to the city.

Thousands of raucous fans had gathered at the same spot beneath City Hall's orange-lit dome on Monday night to watch an outdoor big screen television that captured the team's Game 5 win over the Texas Rangers. The Giants finally achieved World Series domination that eluded the team in 1962, 1989 and 2002.

Von Miller calls 49ers’ Trent Brown 'the best right tackle in the NFL’

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AP

Von Miller calls 49ers’ Trent Brown 'the best right tackle in the NFL’

Von Miller has 73.5 sacks to his name over six seasons in the NFL. He's a five-time Prow Bowl linebacker, three-time All-Pro, Super Bowl champion, and Super Bowl MVP. 

Trent Brown has played 21 games in two NFL seasons for the 49ers, 18 of them as starts. Despite his little time in the NFL and lack of honors, the Broncos' defensive star sees San Francisco's young offensive lineman as the best in the game at his position.

“He’s the best right tackle in the National Football League,” Miller said to the San Francisco Chronicle Wednesday after the first of two joint practices with the 49ers. “And he may even be a top-five tackle, period, in the National Football League. There’s not another tackle who’s that tall, that big and can move he way he moves.”

Brown, at 24 years old and standing 6-foot-8 while weighing 355 pounds, was the only offensive lineman invited to Miller's "Pass Rush Summit" at Stanford in June. Miller says he invited Brown so he could gain more knowledge, but also added, "from my point of view, we could get it (more knowledge) from a premier-offensive-tackle point of view.”

The two went up against each other in the trenches Wednesday in Santa Clara. After Brown held his own, Miller poured on the praise, but he made it clear how the young offensive lineman's future is all up to himself. Brown holds the keys to his potential. 

"He’ll be as good as he wants to be," Miller said. "When he’s on, there’s not another tackle in the National Football League that’s as good as him."

Miller also made a bold prediction. "He’s going to have one of the biggest (contracts) for an offensive lineman."

Brown's rookie deal ends after the 2018 season. 

Practice report: Conley locking in mentally while rehabbing injury

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AP

Practice report: Conley locking in mentally while rehabbing injury

NAPA – Gareon Conley ran Sunday for the first time in two months. The Raiders first-round cornerback remains on the physically unable to perform list with a shin injury originally suffered during a June minicamp. He wants to get back on the field. He just isn’t ready yet.

Missing training camp certainly sets back a dynamic cover man, but it doesn’t mean Conley can’t make an instant impact. While he hasn’t been seen on the practice field, the Raiders have been encouraged that Conley’s proving a quick learner and an inquisitive mind.

“We’d love to have him out there right now,” Raiders assistant head coach – defense John Pagano said. “When he’s out there, he’ll be out there. Until then, I think he got the reps he needed in OTAs. His mental game has picked up tremendously. He’s always asking questions, even more. It’s hard for a lot of injured players in this league to stand there on the sidelines and be able to just watch and look out there, but he’s always asking. He’s getting those mental reps.

"When he’s able to come back, he’ll be at a fast level. Injuries are part of the game, you deal with it and you just have to make sure, as a rookie, you’re taking those mental reps.”

Conley has been on the practice field with his position group most days, with a play sheet in hand to follow along. He has also lifted weights the past two days and worked on the JUGS machine Wednesday.

Nearly a month remains until the regular season starts, leaving Conley time to get back in the mix.

QUICK SLANTS

-- Cornerback Sean Smith took some reps with the first unit on Wednesday, though most of them came as an outside corner in the nickel package. TJ Carrie slid inside in those instances, and generally remained outside in the base defense.

Smith had his second straight quality practice, a sign he might be rebounding after a rough week where he practiced with the second unit and didn’t fare well at Arizona. The Raiders hope he can build on good work and be steadier in coverage.

“I think he’s growing every day,” Pagano said. “There’s always highs and lows in this game. You don’t want to make it, as we term, inconsistent. We’re always looking for the consistency. It’s how you build. It’s how you learn. It’s how you come off those things. There’s always room for improvement in the backend, in the front, all across our defense. There’s guys we’re asking them to go out there and make plays. Has he been improving at practice? Yeah. Then our job is to take that practice stuff and take it to the game field and have that consistency and that carry over to those types of games.”

-- Offensive line coach Mike Tice praised Ian Silberman’s play in a position switch to center. He has seen extensive reps there in camp, including a massive amount in the preseason opener at Arizona. Silberman will play some left guard in coming weeks to establish versatility and give him a shot to make the team.

-- Undrafted rookie Nicholas Morrow played with the first unit in sub packages, as the Raiders continue searching for coverage options in those personnel groups.

-- Jon Feliciano worked with the first unit on Wednesday at left guard. He will be a primary backup at every interior line spot. He is working back from a knee injury that kept him out until last week.