49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

August 14, 2009
Niners-Broncos game-day blog

Jed York spoke for a couple of minutes prior to kickoff. The fact that No. 9 draft pick B.J. Raji inked his deal with the Packers should -- stress, should -- make it easier for the 49ers to sign No. 10 pick Michael Crabtree. Still, the sides are far apart and Crabtree is entrenched in his demands for a slot-busting deal. Asked if the talks have broken off between the team and Crabtree's agent, Eugene Parker, York said, "We're having discussions. We'll get it done." York also noted the trade deadline for draft picks has come and gone. "We're all in," he said.

Mike Nolan trotting onto the Candlestick Park field is a familiar sight, but not in a Broncos uniform. Nolan ran out for warm-ups, shared hugs with a number of 49ers coaches, including a bear hug from Mike Singletary, and then ran back in with his team. Other ex-49ers on the Broncos sideline: Ronald Fields and Brandon Lloyd.

Tonight was going to be the debut of new 49ers play-by-play announcer Ted Robinson. Robinson, however, is in Florida to mourn the passing of his father. Joe Fonzi, who filled in last season when Joe Starkey lost his voice, will join Gary Plummer in the booth.

1st Q. Jimmy Raye's offense already seems more tight-end friendly than Mike Martz's was last year. Shaun Hill hit Vernon Davis on two passes for first downs, including one on 3rd and 15. The drive stalls and Alex Romero boots a 38-yard field goal. There's nothing wrong with Joe Nedney. It's a coach's decision to go with the young guy.

Fullback Zak Keasey, who was bowled over on a sack by the Broncos' Elvis Dumervil, has a right elbow injury. His return is questionable. **UPDATE** Keasey's injury is now to his forearm, and he is out for the game.

Cornerback Nate Clements picks off Kyle Orton with the Broncos knocking on the door. Clements grabbed the ball from tight end Daniel Graham in the end zone. He falls to the ground for the touchback, but could he have taken it out? Alex Smith has replaced Shaun Hill at QB .... and gets sacked on his first pass attempt.


Niners have mostly second teamers in on defense. Isaac Sopoaga, Dre Bly and Jeff Ulbrich are the only starters. ... In fact, Bly just picked off his former team. Niners ball at their own 28 and Dre Bly is the happiest guy in the building. Alex Smith is still in as quarterback.

On 3rd and 7, the Broncos blitz and Smith throws incomplete between Josh Morgan and Maurice Price.

Another INT, this one by Reggie Smith. Kyle Orton now has three interceptions. Think anyone's missing Jay Cutler in Denver? Smith takes over at the 3-yard line, drops back and goes to his last option, Brit Miller for the touchdown. The point after, however, is no good ... 49ers 9, Broncos 0.

4th Q. .... Sorry, was typing up a column for tomorrow. Yes, we do that in-game when it's such a late start ... What'd I miss?

It's always nice when the players who stand out in practices also do so in games. That seems to be the case with Micheal Spurlock, who already has two catches for 24 yards and nearly had a huge gain on a pass from Damon Huard.

Thomas Clayton got in the game before Kory Sheets, but now Clayton is down with what appears to be a lower-body injury. He fell while clutching his right knee. I will update his condition as soon as we get any news. Clyaton was carted off; Sheets is in now. ***They're calling Clayton's injury a "right knee sprain."*****

Holy Smokes! If you would have told me Brit Miller would have two catches, much less two touchdown catches, I would have said you're crazy. Huard hits him in the flat and he runs 40 yards for the touchdown. The two-point conversion, a Montana-to-Clark scenario from Huard to tight end Bear Pascore is complete. 49ers 17, Broncos 10.

Here's the story I wrote about Miller last week. Here's the one I wrote about Pascoe. Clairvoyant?

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Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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