49ers Blog and Q&A

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

September 2, 2012
49ers add Haggans, who will have a disciplinary hearing this week

haggans2.jpg

The 49ers today finalized a deal with veteran Clark Haggans and will add him to an outside linebacking crew that suffered a rash of injuries this offseason. Haggans becomes the fourth member of that group, although the status of top backup Parys Haralson - who apparently was injured a week ago in Denver - is not known. Asked Saturday if Haralson would be ready for the 49ers' Week 1 game in Green Bay, Jim Harbaugh said, "We'll see."

Every outside linebacker on the roster missed at least one exhibition game this year, and starter Aldon Smith still is recovering from a hip pointer suffered in the preseason opener. Both he and fellow starter Ahmad Brooks were on the field for the start of practice Saturday.

Haggans, meanwhile, could face a three-game suspension by the NFL this season after a DUI conviction in 2011 in Arizona. He also was convicted of DUI in Colorado in 2004.

A hearing on the matter will be held on Wednesday at which point Haggans' agent, Jeff Sperbeck, will try to have the suspension reduced. Haggans' most recent DUI occurred after Haggans, who was at a concert with his wife, received a frantic call from their babysitter who said that their daughter, five years old at the time, was having trouble breathing.

Haggans, 35, was cited for speeding and running a red light and was charged with DUI. He pled guilty to "extreme DUI" -- a DUI in which the blood-alcohol level is more than .150 -- and served jail time in June. The matter is not expected to be resolved this week and Haggans should be able to play in Sunday's opener in Green Bay. The 49ers also could tap Demarcus Dobbs as a pass rusher against the pass-happy Packers.

Another option for the 49ers this season is seventh-round pick Cam Johnson, who was placed on the practice squad on Saturday. Johnson had knee surgery in June, missed the team's first three exhibition games, and it's not clear if he is ready to be part of a rotation at the position. Fellow rookie Darius Fleming suffered an ACL tear in May and went on the physically unable to perform list. He is unavailable for at least the first six weeks of the season.

On Saturday, the 49ers tried to claim former Jets outside linebacker Jamaal Westerman off of waivers, but he was awarded to the Cardinals instead. The team released four outside linebackers last week, including their preseason sack leader, Eric Bakhtiari. The team also was impressed with Ikaika Alama-Francis, who joined the team late in the summer but who looked good in the finale Thursday.

It's unknown how the 49ers will create the roster spot to make room for Haggans. The team likely will wait until Monday to make an announcement.

-- 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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