Niners notebook

An assortment of tidbits from 49ers training camp:

--- The 49ers' physically unable to perform list is much shorter than it was at this time last year. When rookie David Baas was placed on the list at the start of training camp due to a hamstring injury that could keep him out up to six weeks, he joined only center Jeremy Newberry (knee) and receiver Derrick Hamilton (knee).

The 49ers are hoping for a mid-camp return from Newberry, while Hamilton is likely out for the season with an anterior cruciate ligament tear.

--- With Newberry and Baas out, the Niners' offensive line is in a state of flux in the early stage of camp. Two of the positions appear secure, with Jonas Jennings at left tackle and Kwame Harris at right tackle. But the three interior spots are wide open because of injuries.

Newberry underwent offseason knee surgery and the 49ers hope to have him available at some point in camp. Realistically, his chances of playing this season are 50-50. Baas, projected to start at right guard, might miss all of training camp but should be able to return for the regular season. So for in camp, the first unit offense has featured Eric Heitmann at center with Justin Smiley playing left guard and rookie Adam Snyder at right guard.

--The 49ers do not have many offensive players who have enjoyed success in the NFL. Veteran Johnnie Morton is on the down side of his career and is expected to be the No. 3 receiver. Barlow had a strong 2003 mostly as a backup and struggled last season. The starting receivers are untested Arnaz Battle and inconsistent Brandon Lloyd.

"A lot of our players are young enough that they have done it in college but not on the pro level," coach Mike Nolan said. "Our draft choices are going to have to prove it at this level. Brandon Lloyd is going to have to prove it. Arnaz Battle has shown he can make big plays on special teams. I look at it right now as we have a lot of very solid young players. We don't have an experienced football team, but we have a young energetic team that has a chance to be solid."

--- Linebacker Julian Peterson has made a strong return to practice after missing the final 10 games of the 2004 season with a torn Achilles' tendon. Peterson said he felt some butterflies prior to his first practice but everything worked out just fine. He said he did not feel his explosiveness was 100 percent, though.

"If he's not explosive, then there are a lot of people in the league who want to be 'not explosive,'" said linebacker Jamie Winborn, who plays opposite Peterson in the 49ers' new 3-4 defensive scheme.

--- The 49ers, under the stewardship of coach Dennis Erickson and general manager Terry Donahue, went 2-14 last season and earned the top pick in the NFL draft. When the club reported to training camp for the first practice Saturday, the team found a banner with its stated goal just outside the looker room.

The banner reads "Win the West" with X-marks over the helmets of the Cardinals, Rams and Seahawks.

--- Incumbent starter Tim Rattay entered training camp atop the depth chart but has no assurances that he even will remain with the team when the club breaks camp. Rattay's name has come up in trade talks, and Nolan said he is still open to the thought of adding a veteran quarterback.

--- Quarterback Ken Dorsey recently let a motorist off the hook after she backed into and dented "Baby," his 1996 Honda Accord. "She said she didn't have any insurance, and I told her to just go," Dorsey said.

--- Camp Calendar: Camp closes at the team's Santa Clara practice facility on Aug. 24. A scrimmage is scheduled for this Saturday. Practices are closed to the general public except on these remaining dates: Aug. 3, 5, 6, 8, 10 and 15. For more information on the free admission, go to www.49ers.com.


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