49ers Blog and Q&A

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

October 11, 2011
WR tryouts: Houshmandzadeh in, Zeigler out

Veteran T.J. Houshmandzadeh is one of the players trying out today for the 49ers' vacancy at wide receiver, but former 49ers receiver Dominique Zeigler is not, according to multiple sources. The 49ers will consider a number of receivers, including veterans like Houshmandzadeh, who played 10 years in the league, as well as the team's practice-squad receivers, Joe Hastings and John Matthews.


"There will be somewhat of a tryout, a workout," coach Jim Harbaugh said on his weekly show on KNBR. "We'll bring some men in and compete for that spot, and most likely we will add another player to the 53-man roster. Whether that comes from our practice squad or outside the building, we'll determine that in the next 24 to 48 hours."

Hastings is an undrafted rookie who put up prolific numbers at Washburn University. Matthews was added last week but is familiar with the 49ers offense having played for Harbaugh at the University of San Diego.

Houshmandzadeh, 34, had five prolific seasons with the Bengals from 2004-08 and one with the Seahawks in 2009 in which he caught at least 73 passes and totaled at least 900 receiving yards. His production, however, tailed off last year as a member of the Baltimore Ravens, who are coached by Harbaugh's brother, John. He started only two games and caught 30 passes for 398 yards with three touchdowns.

Zeigler, meanwhile, was coming off a torn ACL suffered last season and was not fully healthy when he resumed playing with the 49ers during the preseason. He had one catch for 10 yards in the exhibition season.

Frank Gore has been nominated for the FedEx "Ground" player of the week for his 125-yard performance against the Buccaneers. Gore has won the award once before, in 2009 following a 207-yard game against the Seahawks in Week 2. Just like last week with Alex Smith's "Air" nomination, votes can be cast at nfl.com/fedex.

While you're at it, you can vote for another 49er, outside linebacker Aldon Smith, who is battling Cam Newton, Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin and bengals Andy Dalton and A.J. Green for rookie of the week honors. Smith had two sacks against Tampa Bay and leads the 49ers with 3 1/2 sacks. For this award, the link is nfl.com/rookies.

Questions about the 49ers' wide-receiver hunt, about the Detroit Lions, about the 49ers' suddenly surging offense? We're chatting today at 10 a.m. at www.sacbee.com/live

-- 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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