2014 DRAFT GUIDE
New 49ers kicker Phil Dawson ready to start fresh

By JANIE McCAULEY - AP Sports Writer
    2013-09-05 17:39

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) - Phil Dawson has been to Candlestick Park for numerous kicking workouts to try to learn the stadium's tricky wind. He has hit it off with his teammates and begun to settle into life in the Bay Area - his first major move in more than a decade.

It's hard to imagine this guy being rattled by change, yet he acknowledges feeling anxiety through it all. At first.

Here he was a few months back, a 14-year NFL veteran nervous about joining a new team for the first time and starting fresh with the reigning NFC champion San Francisco 49ers. Even if he realizes full well - and did at the time - that this might be his best shot at winning a Super Bowl.

From the moment Dawson joined the 49ers, he put together a daunting to-do list for himself to get acclimated in a hurry. He will make his 49ers debut Sunday against Green Bay, a rematch of San Francisco's emphatic divisional playoff win in January.

``There's a long list of things I knew I needed to accomplish. One of which was just getting comfortable with my teammates, learning everybody, letting them get to know me,'' Dawson said. There are so many things, getting used to snap and hold and developing that rapport and the timing, getting used to the new environment in terms of kicking, on kickoffs where am I aiming, what are my lines going to be? Getting a little more familiar with the stadiums. Literally, I'm starting over. It was a little intimidating at first but I look back now and I'm very pleased with how many of those boxes we've been able to check off. I feel ready to tackle what's next.''

And how about those swirling winds off the bay at The Stick? Dawson's not even pretending to have that down yet - or ever.

He seemed pretty comfortable at Candlestick during the preseason, hitting a 50-yard field goal in a victory against the Vikings. Overall, Dawson connected on 9 of 11 exhibition field goals with a pair of 55-yarders at Kansas City.

Yet Dawson will treat the opener with the Packers as if it's a road game. And he plans to continue to take that approach ``until I get a few more under my belt and being able to start answering a few more of those unknowns.''

One thing that has eased the transition: Dawson's special teams coach, Brad Seely. They worked together in Cleveland, too.

So, when San Francisco began searching for David Akers' replacement, courting Dawson made perfect sense. The Niners signed Dawson to a one-year deal early in free agency.

``I know what he's done and I know him personally,'' Seely said Thursday. ``I know how even-keeled he is. He doesn't have a lot of ups and downs in his life or on the football field. You've got to deal with the wind conditions. We've gone to the stadium a lot and worked out. He kind of gets to know it as well as he can. He's done a great job in practice and we play out here every afternoon in the wind.''

Dawson quickly explained to one of his sons that Andy Lee had Dawson's old No. 4, and No. 8 wouldn't work because that belonged to Hall of Famer Steve Young.

He has settled with 9, and all is well.

A fan favorite in Cleveland, the 38-year-old Dawson went 29 for 31 on field goals last season in his 14th and final year with the Browns, making all 13 of his attempts from 40 yards or beyond, including 7 for 7 from 50-plus. He is the ninth-most accurate field-goal kicker (84.0 percent) in league history.

``I put a lot of pressure on myself, some of that's just my personality,'' Dawson said. ``Whether I had one more year in Cleveland or a new year in San Francisco, any time going into a new season, I'm kind of like a pilot doing my pre-check check list.''

Something's going right when the star linebacker gives you a shout out.

``I've never seen a kicker work out as hard as he does,'' Patrick Willis said. ``Sometimes we joke with the kickers they get to go home so early. With Phil, when he leaves there's no question in your mind he's put in a great day's work.''

And, there are a few others Dawson must please Sunday. His wife, Shannon, is bringing their three children to town for the game - 12-year-old Dru, 10-year-old Beau and Sophiann, 7.

``I can't mess up or the kids will have a bad school day Monday,'' Dawson said. ``Dad can't embarrass the kids.''

Notes: In agreement with Harbaugh, offensive coordinator Greg Roman has concerns about the rules for protecting running quarterbacks - like Colin Kaepernick. ``My feelings are the rule needs to be refined to make it a good rule. I'm not going to get into the wording and the terms and the specific legalese of it,'' Roman said. ``The interpretation of it can be abused, not in the best interest of the players or the league.''... RB LaMichael James said he will be out of the opener with a knee injury. ... Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio on rookie S Eric Reid's first career game: ``I'm sure there's other teams we'd prefer for him to start against. There's no Sacramento States in this league. He's just got to be ready.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Justin TuckOct 29 09:23p

Oakland Raiders TE David Ausberry (foot), WR Vincent Brown (hamstring), CB Chimdi Chekwa (hamstring), CB Keith McGill (groin) and CB Carlos Rogers (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. [ More ]

Bobby WagnerOct 29 09:23p

Seattle Seahawks TE Zach Miller (ankle) and LB Bobby Wagner (toe) were each unable to practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and each is already ruled out for Week 9 against the Oakland Raiders.

Max UngerOct 29 09:23p

Seattle Seahawks DT Jordan Hill (ankle), SS Jeron Johnson (concussion), CB Byron Maxwell (calf) and LB Malcolm Smith (non-injury related) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. OG James Carpenter [ More ]

J. CunninghamOct 29 08:53p

The St. Louis Rams signed OT Steven Baker, WR Emory Blake, OT Travis Bond and TE Justice Cunningham to the practice squad Wednesday, Oct. 29.

Marcus LattimoreOct 29 08:53p

San Francisco 49ers RB Marcus Lattimore (knee) returned to practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. He remains on the reserve/non-football injury list.

Brian QuickOct 29 08:43p

The St. Louis Rams placed WR Brian Quick (shoulder) on the reserve/injured list Wednesday, Oct. 29.

A.J. EddsOct 29 08:33p

Atlanta Falcons FS Sean Baker, Carolina Panthers RB Darrin Reaves, Denver Broncos DE Greg Latta, New England Patriots OG Chris Barker, New York Jets LB A.J. Edds, Oakland Raiders [ More ]

Damian WilliamsOct 29 08:33p

The St. Louis Rams promoted OG Brandon Washington from the practice squad to the active roster Wednesday, Oct. 29, and they signed free-agent WR Damian Williams.

Patrick WillisOct 29 08:03p

San Francisco 49ers CB Tramaine Brock (toe), SS Jimmie Ward (quadriceps) and LB Patrick Willis (toe) were listed as limited participants in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. CB Chris Culliver [ More ]

Ronnie HillmanOct 29 08:03p

Denver Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman (shoulder) was limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29.

Anthony CollinsOct 29 07:53p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers OT Anthony Collins (foot) and LB Brandon Magee (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. C Evan Dietrich-Smith (knee) and DE Michael Johnson (hand) were listed as limited participants.

Lamarcus JoynerOct 29 07:53p

St. Louis Rams S Cody Davis (concussion), DT Aaron Donald (shoulder), LB Jo-Lonn Dunbar (toe), DE William Hayes (foot), CB Janoris Jenkins (knee), S Rodney McLeod (knee), OT Rodger [ More ]

Billy WinnOct 29 07:43p

Cleveland Browns WR Rodney Smith (hamstring), DE Phil Taylor (knee) and OT Joe Thomas (non-injury related) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. DT Ahtyba Rubin (ankle) was [ More ]

A.J. GreenOct 29 07:33p

Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green (toe) returned to practice on a limited basis Wednesday, Oct. 29. Green said he feels good, and he'll try to do more Thursday, Oct. [ More ]

Johnathan JosephOct 29 07:33p

Houston Texans LB Jadeveon Clowney (knee), LB Brian Cushing (knee), CB Johnathan Joseph (knee), LB Brooks Reed (groin) and LB Jeff Tarpinian (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. [ More ]

Stepfan TaylorOct 29 07:33p

Arizona Cardinals RB Stepfan Taylor (calf) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and he has been ruled out for Week 9.

Patrick PetersonOct 29 07:33p

Arizona Cardinals FS Tony Jefferson (head) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. LB Kenny Demens (knee), TE Troy Niklas (ankle) and CB Patrick Peterson (concussion) were listed as limited [ More ]

Brandon ThompsonOct 29 07:23p

Cincinnati Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict (knee) has been ruled out for Week 9 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. CB Darqueze Dennard (hamstring), DE Carlos Dunlap (illness), LB Rey Maualuga (hamstring), [ More ]

Louis VasquezOct 29 07:03p

Denver Broncos LB Lamin Barrow (concussion), S Quinton Carter (hamstring) and OG Louis Vasquez (illness) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. CB Omar Bolden (concussion) and LB Steven Johnson [ More ]

Mike PounceyOct 29 06:53p

Miami Dolphins OG Daryn Colledge (illness) and TE Dion Sims (toe) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. OG Nate Garner (neck), LB Chris McCain (foot), LB Koa Misi (ankle), [ More ]

Brian RobinsonOct 29 06:43p

Minnesota Vikings DE Brian Robinson (glute) and CB Jabari Price (hamstring) both did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. CB Josh Robinson (ankle), DT Sharrif Floyd (ankle, knee), [ More ]

Cyrus GrayOct 29 06:23p

Kansas City Chiefs WR Donnie Avery (groin) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and has been ruled out for the team's Week 9 game. CB Jamell Fleming [ More ]

R. Griffin IIIOct 29 05:53p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III is expected to start in the team's Week 9 game against the Minnesota Vikings, according to league sources.

Tracy PorterOct 29 05:53p

Washington Redskins S Ryan Clark (ankle, shoulder) and OT Trent Williams (knee) were limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. LB Ryan Kerrigan (wrist), LB Trent Murphy (knee), CB Tracy [ More ]

Jon BeasonOct 29 05:33p

New York Giants LB Jon Beason (foot, toe) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Oct. 29.

Jonathan GoodwinOct 29 05:23p

New Orleans Saints LB David Hawthorne (hand) and FB Austin Johnson (knee) both did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and have been ruled out for the team's Week 9 [ More ]

Pierre ThomasOct 29 05:23p

New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas (rib, shoulder) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and has been ruled out for Week 9.

Jimmy GrahamOct 29 05:23p

New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham (shoulder) was limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and is questionable for the team's Week 9 game.

Brandon BrownerOct 29 05:03p

New England Patriots DE Chandler Jones (hip) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. FS Nate Ebner (finger), DE Dominique Easley (knee, shoulder), OT Cameron Fleming (finger) and [ More ]

Demario DavisOct 29 05:03p

New York Jets CB Darrin Walls (calf, knee) didn't practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. OG Oday Aboushi (shoulder), OG Willie Colon (knee), LB David Harris (shoulder), LG Trevor Reilly (knee) [ More ]

Terrell SuggsOct 29 04:53p

Baltimore Ravens WR Michael Campanaro (thigh), DT Haloti Ngata (shin), CB Jimmy Smith (foot), LB Terrell Suggs (neck), CB Lardarius Webb (non-injury) and OG Marshal Yanda (knee) all did [ More ]

Justin ForsettOct 29 04:53p

Baltimore Ravens RB Justin Forsett (ankle) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. Forsett is dealing with an ankle injury.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group