49ers Passed On Vick For Trouble Free Carr

Tommy Lawlor, a blogger (eaglesblitz.blogspot.com) with connections inside the Philadelphia Eagles organization, reported that the 49ers were in serious negotiations to trade for Eagles QB Michael Vick before pulling out at the last second and choosing to go with free agent QB David Carr, formerly of the New York Giants, instead.

According to Lawlor the compensation for Vick had been all but agreed upon, but the Niners, who still foresaw Vick being a backup to Alex Smith, were concerned that Vick would balk at having such a role and decided not to upset the apple cart.

Giants reporters who've covered Carr the past two seasons say he's not the kind to make waves and has more of a "backup personality" that will keep Smith from looking over his shoulder after every incomplete pass or poor decision. As Tim Kawakami of The San Jose Mercury News pointed out earlier this week, Smith has lost every training camp quarterback competition he's been involved in since being drafted by the 49ers in 2005, and he plays far more comfortably when he knows he's "the guy."

While Carr - who is on the verge of signing but hasn't done so yet - appears to be the ideal backup for Smith in many aspects, what's peculiar is that the 49ers aren't exactly going to be paying him chump change for riding the pine. Carr signed a two year, $6.25M contract, and could make another $1.87M in incentives, which would obviously involve him getting to play.

Meanwhile the 49ers "other" backup quarterback, Shaun Hill, still remains on the roster while the team is trying to determine if he has any value in trade. The Cleveland Browns and Seattle Seahawks have both let their backups go recently so there could be some interest in Hill, however slight. For now, it's business as usual for Hill, and he's still planning on returning to the Bay Area next week for off-season workouts.

The 49ers, for their part, have denied having any discussions or interest in Vick, according to a team source.

In other news…

TE Becht spurns 49ers to re-sign with Cardinals

Stop me if this sounds familiar.

A free agent formerly of San Francisco's division rival Cardinals paid a visit to the team's Santa Clara complex before making an abrupt about face and deciding to re-up with Arizona.

TE Anthony Becht, who told reporters that he brings "a dominating attitude to the edge" as far as being a blocker in the running game, curiously spoke of the Cardinals as being in the rear view mirror for him, saying that they "had a nice run."

Somewhere between Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning, Becht apparently changed his views on Arizona's 2010 prospects, and signed what's being reported as a one year deal for $950,000. It's unknown at this time how close he ever got to signing on the bottom line with the 49ers, but General Manager Scot McCloughan never even met Becht face-to-face as he was in Norman, Oklahoma yesterday for the Sooners' Pro Day.

Of course, we all remember the 49ers similarly courting Cardinals QB Kurt Warner last season when he was a free agent, but the future Hall-of-Famer quickly decided that the team wasn't a good fit for him and he re-signed for one more season with Arizona before calling it quits after a playoff loss the New Orleans Saints.

The 49ers have made it well known that they're in the market for a blocking tight end and Becht wasn't their only target. The team has reportedly already engaged in discussions with Chris Baker, formerly of the New England Patriots. Those talks haven't progressed to the point where Baker has scheduled a visit yet, however.

San Francisco interested in Washington?

In addition to boosting their offensive line, the 49ers biggest needs in the upcoming draft are for a change-of-pace running back and a return man, preferably in the form of one guy who can perform both duties. To that end Clemson RB C.J. Spiller has been much speculated about as a possible first round target.

However, there are veterans out there who can do a fair impersonation of Spiller for a fraction of what it cost to draft him with the 13th overall pick. One such guy is Leon Washington, whom the 49ers have reportedly kicked the tires on.

Washington, a five year veteran of the New York Jets, has always been a top-notch return man and saw his role in the team's offense steadily increase over the years, especially as a receiver. Having a weapon like him would be an asset to any team, but, as always, there's a catch.

First off, he's only a restricted free agent, and the Jets have tendered him at 2nd round level. That's a prohibitive cost, but Washington's agent, Alvin Keels seems convinced that someone will pay it, Tweeting that "Washington's return to the Jets is 50/50 at best at this point."

Secondly, Washington is coming off a horrific injury. He fractured both his fibula and tibia at Oakland on Oct. 25, with Raiders players claiming afterward that they could see his leg bones piercing through the skin. Keels claims that Washington is already ahead of schedule on his recovery, but it certainly will give those interested in his client some pause.

What can't be disputed is that Washington was a force in his last full season, where he averaged nearly six yards per carry on 76 attempts, with six touchdowns, added 47 receptions and two more touchdowns in the pass game, and supplied one more score as a kick returner.

It remains to be seen if the 49ers think Washington can be that kind of player again, and if so, what they would lengths they would go to get him.

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