Three days of rest healthy for Niners

<P>It was a different Jeff Garcia at 49ers practice Wednesday from the week before. This Jeff Garcia could talk about his painful rib injury with at least a trace of a smile. And this Jeff Garcia could throw a pass without wincing. </P>

Garcia practiced sparingly last week with a rib injury that had him questionable up to kickoff time for Saturday's game against Philadelphia. But after three days of rest over the Christmas holiday, Garcia was feeling much better. He's listed as probable for Sunday's game against the Dallas Cowboys.

"A few days off helped," Garcia said. "I was able to go out and pretty much throw the ball pain-free. Not making it any worse in the game definitely helped. I don't think it will be a problem." Niners coach Steve Mariucci gave his team Sunday, Monday and Tuesday off after the Niners defeated the Eagles 13-3 on Saturday. The time away from football led to a crisp practice Wednesday.

"Three days (off) did us good," Mariucci said. "We were fresh. We were moving around fast today. (Garcia) looked pretty good out there. He probably will practice every day this week."

Linebacker Jeff Ulbrich, who has missed the past two games with an ankle injury, returned to practice Wednesday and, Mariucci said, "We anticipate if he practices all week, then he should start," against the Cowboys. Ulbrich, however, still is listed as questionable on the injury report. Fullback Fred Beasley, who underwent surgery on his fractured right hand Monday and didn't practice Wednesday, also is listed as probable and is expected to start against the Cowboys.

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