49ers Blog and Q&A

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

September 21, 2012
Lions safety fined for Alex Smith's bloody nose


The Detroit Lions are still feeling jolts from their Sunday loss to the 49ers. Safety John Wendling was fined $7,875 for his forearm shiver on sliding quarterback Alex Smith, a shot that left Smith with a gash on the bridge of his nose and blood streaming down his face. Wendling was not penalized on the play. Instead there was a penalty on Delanie Walker for holding.

Said Smith after the game: "I looked up, saw the flag and thought for sure it was a personal foul call, but all of a sudden we were backed up and it was a holding call. I was pretty stunned we didn't get that call."

Detroit defensive end Cliff Avril was not fined for poking tight end Vernon Davis in the eye. Davis missed several plays after the incident but returned to the game and caught the 49ers' final touchdown pass.

Wendling's fine is just a little more than half of the $15,000 Smith was fined last season for wearing a San Francisco Giants baseball cap that wasn't sanctioned by the NFL. In response, Giants manager Bruce Bochy on Thursday wore a 49ers cap for his pre-game chat with the media while Giants players also wore 49ers gear after their win over the Rockies.

When he was asked about Bochy's gesture today, Jim Harbaugh said, "I thought it was tremendous. Tremendous, tremendous."

Harbaugh said he's a big Giants fan and often catches the radio replay of Giants games on his way home from the 49ers facility. "I know that, myself included, and a lot of the guys on the team here have gotten a lot of inspiration from them," Harbaugh said. "The come-from-behind wins, the close games - they're a team that just never gives up. They're a never-say-die type of team. I love watching them."

Injuries - The 49ers continue to list receiver Ted Ginn (ankle) as questionable despite the fact that Ginn returned to practice this week on a limited basis.
Running back Brandon Jacobs, who hasn't practiced since an Aug. 18 knee injury, also is listed as questionable. Punter Andy Lee (hand) is probable.

For the Vikings, inside linebacker Erin Henderson, who had 22 tackles over the first two weeks, is out with a concussion.

-- 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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