The San Francisco 49ers made a few surprising moves today, releasing draft pick B.J. Daniels and the recently-signed fullback Owen Marecic. They also plan on signing free agent quarterback John Skelton, according to ESPN and multiple other reports.
Skelton will presumably take over Daniels’ role as the third-string quarterback on the 49ers, behind Colt McCoy and Colin Kaepernick.
Skelton, 25, has spent the past three seasons with the Arizona Cardinals after being drafted in the fifth round in 2010. In his career with the Cardinals, he has thrown for over 3,700 yards, 15 touchdowns, and has a 53.2 percent completion percentage in 20 games played and 17 starts.
He was claimed off waivers by the Bengals this offseason, but was released in late August. According to the ESPN report, Skelton chose to sign with the 49ers over the Titans and another team because he is interested in playing under head coach Jim Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Greg Roman.
As for Daniels, the 49ers’ seventh-round pick in this year’s draft will have to clear waivers before he can wind up back on the team’s practice squad. There is no guarantee that will happen, as Daniels performed well in the preseason and surely caught the attention of a few teams around the league.
Donte Whitner was fined $21,000 for an unnecessary roughness penalty committed against the Rams last Thursday. He dislodged the ball out of the hands of Rams’ receiver Chris Givens in the end zone by lowering his shoulder and delivering a big hit.
Apparently the league sees this as contact to the head, but it appears that Whitner hit Givens in his shoulder area, not his head.
“I was going to the midsection, where the ball is, with my shoulder,” Whitner said. “You could actually see me turn to lay off the head. If I would have run through the guy, then I think I would have actually deserved that.”