49ers Blog and Q&A

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

August 16, 2010
Niners deal Balmer to Seattle for sixth round pick

Kentwan Balmer, the 49ers' former first-round pick who has gone AWOL from the team in recent days, is on his way to the Seattle Seahawks, according to a source with knowledge of the situation. Terms of the deal are not yet know. Seattle needs depth along the defensive line and Balmer potentially could play multiple positions there, including nose tackle and defensive end. Moreover, former 49ers general manager Scot McCloughan, who drafted Balmer 29th overall in San Francisco, is now with the Seahawks. ***UPDATE*** I've been told that the 49ers will get a sixth-round pick in 2011 in return for Balmer.

Balmer, meanwhile, has been unexcused from 49ers training camp since Wednesday. At that point, the 49ers sent him a so-called five-day letter, which gave the team the right to put him on the reserve/left list starting today. That would have shut down Balmer's season for good.

Balmer initially was excused from camp to deal with a "personal issue," but it soon became clear to the 49ers he did not want to return to the team. Asked Friday if he thought Balmer would be back, coach Mike Singletary said, "If Kentwan wanted to be here, he'd be here."

Balmer has had trouble cracking the starting lineup since he was drafted in 2008 and was behind Isaac Sopoaga and Ray McDonald at left defensive end in San Francisco's 3-4 defense. Balmer had spoken in recent months about his frustration over where he was on the depth chart.

-- Matt Barrows



MATTHEW 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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