PHOENIX -- It was intended to be a serious question, yet Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis burst into laughter before attempting to answer.
The 49ers are talking about using Dan Skuta on offense. What kind of fullback is he?
Lewis, Skuta's coach for four seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, regained his composure before replying Tuesday at the NFL owners meetings.
"Dan will try anything that will allow him to get on the field," Lewis said. "That's for sure."
So the Skuta experiment at fullback in 2010 was not necessarily a success?
"As I said," Lewis answered with a big smile, "Dan will try anything . . . "
The 49ers signed Skuta last week to a two-year, $3 million contract. Skuta is expected to make his largest contributions as one of the 49ers' core special-teams players. He will also be a backup to All-Pro inside linebackers Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman.
Clearly, the 49ers have also talked to Skuta (6-foot-2, 250 pounds) about a role on offense. He played 15 snaps of offense for the Bengals in 2010. The Bengals signed fullback Chris Pressley late in 2010, and Skuta's run on offense with the Bengals was over.
There is no denying Skuta is a standout on special teams, though. He led the Bengals in special-teams tackles two of the past three years.
Said Lewis, "He's a hard-trying, great kid. Just a great kid."