49ers Blog and Q&A

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

August 17, 2011
Niners sign 3rd QB -- Josh McCown

The 49ers signed a former UFL quarterback, but it's not Daunte Culpepper.

mccown.jpg

Instead, the team inked a one-year deal with Josh McCown, 32, a third-round pick by the Arizona Cardinals in 2002 who most recently played for the Hartford Colonials. McCown (6-4, 215) played three seasons with the Cardinals before stints with the Lions, Raiders and Panthers. His best season came in 2004 when he started 13 games for the Cardinals, threw for 2,511 yards and had 11 touchdowns against 10 interceptions.

McCown arrived in the Bay Area at 5 a.m. today, had a physical at Stanford Hospital and then worked out for Jim Harbaugh and coaches at their Santa Clara facility. He was signed so that he could take part in today's practice. McCown was signed for the league minimum -- $810,000, according to a league source.

Why McCown? He played twice for 49ers quarterbacks coach Geep Chryst, who was an assistant in Arizona and Carolina when McCown was on those squads. Like Culpepper, McCown has played for Dennis Green, a coaching disciple of Bill Walsh. Green didn't run a pure West Coast offense in Arizona like Harbaugh is running with the 49ers. But Green said Monday that the systems are close enough that an incoming quarterback should have little problem stepping in right away.

McCown is wearing No. 9 for the 49ers.

-- 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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