49ers Blog and Q&A

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

February 10, 2009
49ers release Keith Lewis, Banta-Cain

The 49ers today cut ties with safety Keith Lewis and linebacker Tully Banta-Cain. Lewis, who played at Valley High School in Sacramento, originally was a sixth-round pick out of Oregon in 2004. He started nine games in 2006 but mostly was considered a special teams standout who specialized in blocked punts.

Banta-Cain, meanwhile, was a free-agent acquisition in 2007. He did not provide the pass-rush ability the 49ers expected that season and he had to agree to a sizeable pay cut to remain with San Francisco in 2008. Both Lewis and Banta-Cain play positions the 49ers hope to upgrade this offseason. The team also made a waiver claim for former Buccaneers and Browns quarterback Bruce Gradkowski, but he was awarded instead to the Raiders who finished 2008 with a worse record.

-- Matt Barrows


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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