49ers Blog and Q&A

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

May 30, 2011
Niner rookies staying in shape despite lockout

By this time last year, the 49ers already had signed two draft picks - sixth rounder Kyle Williams and seventh rounder Phillip Adams - to four-year contracts. This year, the lockout has prevented any NFL draft pick from signing and most from even receiving a playbook. As I wrote in Sunday's newspaper, most of the 49ers' rookie class is living modestly - some with their parents - as they wait out the lockout.


Here's an addendum to that story. As you can see, each draftee I was able to talk to (I spoke with five of the 10) is working out regularly, although it seems as if only two of them, Colin Kaepernick and Ronald Johnson, have a copy of the 49ers' playbook at this time.

OLB Aldon Smith. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the first rounder is expected to begin working out with his 49ers in the Bay Area this week. If that's the case, Smith likely will join up with fellow defenders Justin Smith, Isaac Sopoaga, Ray McDonald and Parys Haralson, who have been training together regularly since February. Justin Smith appears to be the ideal mentor. He also is a Missouri product, and if he isn't the hardest-working player on the team, he's in the Top 3.

QB Colin Kaepernick. The quarterback is nearly recovered from a minor surgical procedure, and he moved to the Bay Area last week. As previously reported by The Bee, he began working out with teammates on Wednesday.

WR Ronald Johnson. Johnson, who trained for 10 days with 49ers teammates following the draft, is back in Muskegon, Mi. living with his uncle. Johnson said his daily training regimen is broken into three parts - weight training in the morning, running sprints in the afternoon and throwing with a former high school teammate in the evening. He works out at a local high school (actually, his rival high school), Muskegon Heights.

S Colin Jones. The sixth rounder is still at TCU and works out with former Horned Frog players in the Fort Worth area. The group includes Seattle Seahawks linebacker David Hawthorne and Ravens linebacker Jason Phillips. The 49ers are eying Jones as a special teams standout, and he says his workout regimen includes practicing how to handle double teams as a punt-coverage gunner.

FB Bruce Miller. His agent says Miller is living with his parents and working out in the Atlanta area.

G/C Mike Person. Person is home in Glendive, Montana. His father, Jim, is a history teacher at the local high school, and Mike said he goes there at noon every day to use the school's weight room. Glendive has fewer than 5,000 residents, but Person insists he isn't being treated like royalty. He's only been tapped for his celebrity once - this week he's going to talk to one of the local kids' basketball teams. "I'm still just 'Mike' up here," he said. "It's a small town. Everybody knows everyone."

CB Curtis Holcomb. Holcomb is just six hours shy of graduating with a major in criminal justice (he wants to be a U.S. marshal) and a minor in sociology. Although his football scholarship is expired, he said Florida A&M has allowed him to finish his requirements, which he will do this summer, free of charge. He said he continues to work out with other college players and few CFL players at Success Athletic Training in Tallahassee, which is where he worked to prepare for the draft.

-- 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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