49ers notes: Jenkins vows to come back as 'totally different player'

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 3C
Last Modified: Monday, Mar. 25, 2013 - 7:25 am

SANTA CLARA – Wide receiver A.J. Jenkins said Tuesday he will make sure he doesn't go another season without a catch.

The 49ers' 2012 first-round draft pick said he wants to return next season as "a totally different player" and that he planned to work out with buddy Colin Kaepernick during the offseason.

"Obviously, I want to contribute a lot more than I have been," said Jenkins, who had only one pass thrown in his direction this season. "So I'm going to make that happen and come back bigger, faster, stronger."

The 49ers may have to rely on him, especially early in 2013.

Kyle Williams and Mario Manningham suffered ACL injuries late in the season. Both are expected back for the start of next season, but it's uncertain how the injuries will affect them.

Two other receivers, Randy Moss and Ted Ginn, are not under contract for next season. Moss has said he wants to play in 2013 but not necessarily with the 49ers because he felt he was not used enough in 2012.

Asked if Moss conveyed that concern, coach Jim Harbaugh said, "Well, in a competitive way, yes. He wants to be involved, and we've talked about it many times, the suggestions he's made. And it's all been positive. All been good."

When Jenkins was drafted in April, general manager Trent Baalke said he loved the receiver's big, soft hands and the speed with which he got in and out of breaks. One area that needed work, Baalke said, was strength, and Jenkins said he would dedicate himself to the weight room this offseason.

He said he's going home to Jacksonville, Fla., for a couple of days, then returning to Santa Clara to work with strength coach Mark Uyeyama. He also said he would spend time in Atlanta, where Kaepernick trained before the draft in 2011, and continue working on their chemistry.

"Obviously, they made me a first-round choice for that purpose," he said. "I'm going to be accountable this offseason and make myself the kind of player that they want me to be."

Contract for Goldson? – Harbaugh said safety Dashon Goldson, who has been seeking a long-term contract the last two seasons, deserved to be rewarded.

"You know that he's out there. The opposing offense knows that he's out there," Harbaugh said. "… He just does everything you want a safety to do. And you reward those types of people."

Goldson, who earned $6.2 million as the team's franchise player in 2012, made it clear he did not want the franchise tag again. He said he wanted the security of a long-term deal, whether it was with the 49ers or another team.

"I felt that they wanted me to prove myself, and I think I did just that," said Goldson, who made the Pro Bowl and All-Pro teams this season. "So if I was in the position again with the franchise tag, I'd be very surprised."

Pass too high – Moss has been slammed in the media for his lack of effort on a second-quarter pass from Kaepernick on Sunday that resulted in an interception by Ravens safety Ed Reed.

Harbaugh, however, said the ball was uncatchable.

"I think the ball was thrown too high on that particular play," Harbaugh said.

Pressed on the issue, Harbaugh said, "I told you how I felt. I felt the ball was thrown too high. It wasn't catchable."

Moss had two catches for 41 yards in the Super Bowl. After the game, he was blasted for not reaching for the ball, including by Comcast commentators Bill Romanowski and Dwight Clark, who accused Moss of "alligator arms."

Surgery for Smith – Defensive end Justin Smith will have surgery on his partially torn triceps tendon this week. His recovery is expected to be three months.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

Read more articles by Matthew Barrows



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