The 28-year-old Engelberger recorded a team and career-high six sacks (40.5 yds.) in 2004, starting 15 of 16 games played for the 49ers. San Francisco's leader with four forced fumbles last season, Engelberger finished the 2004 campaign ranked second in tackles among 49ers defensive linemen with a career-best 64 stops (34 solo).
He was a 16-game starter in 2003 and tallied a then career-high 4.5 sacks (31 yds.) to help San Francisco tie for fourth in the NFL with 42 sacks. Engelberger, who has missed only two regular-season games in five NFL seasons, was a key member of 49ers run defenses that posted a top-10 NFL ranking in three consecutive years from 2001-03.
Tabbed a second-team All-American by the Associated Press as a senior at Virginia Tech, Engelberger started every game at defensive end during his final collegiate season and recorded seven sacks. He also earned All-Big East Conference recognition in each of his last three years at the school after beginning his career with the Hokies as a walk-on.
A tight end and linebacker at Robert E. Lee High School in Springfield, Va., John Albert Engelberger was born Oct. 18, 1976, in Heidelberg, Germany.
Middlebrooks was Denver's first-first-round draft choicein 2001 and was enjoying his finest season as a pro in 2004 before being placed on injured reserve Dec. 17 with a lower right leg injury.
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