Preseason, here he comes?
Michael Crabtree is currently on the practice field for the 49ers' morning session. The 49ers wide receiver suffered an injury -- presumably to his calf -- in the team's opening practice July 27 and has been rehabbing ever since.
When practice began at 10:30 a.m., Crabtree still was working with strength and conditioning coach Mark Uyeyama. But as individual drills started, he put on his shoulder pads and helmet and joined the wide receivers for their drills.
Crabtree, of course, has never played in an exhibition game for the 49ers. He missed 2009 because of a contract dispute. The 2010 preseason was lost after he suffered a neck injury that lingered until the regular season. Last year, he was recovering from a broken foot. The 49ers open the exhibition season Friday at home against Minnesota.
In other news, Mike Iupati is back at left guard after missing the last two practices for the birth of his first child. Nate Byham also is back in uniform. Sixth-round pick Jason Slowey is not practicing. Neither are Joe Hastings and Curtis Holcomb. Demarcus Dobbs continues to wear No. 40.
******UPDATE******** Crabtree ended up taking part in individual drills but did not do any seven-on-seven, 11-on-11 or team work. He spent some of that time running routes against Uyeyama with head trainer Jeff Ferguson looking on. That is, he will be worked back in slowly and his availability for Friday is still very much iffy.
-- Matt Barrows