Good­win, back from per­sonal is­sue, ex­cited to play once again

The Mercury News - - Sports - By Cam In­man cin­[email protected] ba­yare­anews­group.com

SANTA CLARA >> Mar­quise Good­win re­served com­ment Fri­day on what per­sonal is­sue kept him out the past two games, but he’s happy to re­turn for the 49ers’ game Sun­day when the Den­ver Bron­cos visit, and one as­pect that ex­cites him is team­ing up with red-hot re­ceiver Dante Pet­tis.

“I’m very ex­cited for the op­por­tu­nity to be on the same field at the same time with him,” Good­win said. “We’ve dealt with a lot of in­juries, a lot of mishaps.”

Pet­tis ac­counted for all three of the 49ers’ touch­downs in losses at Tampa Bay and Seat­tle the past two games, while Good­win was ex­cused to deal with a per­sonal mat­ter he’s not ready to ex­plain.

Said Good­win: “Out of re­spect for my fam­ily, if they give me the OK, I’ll be will­ing to talk about it. Un­til then, I’ll keep it be­tween us.”

Good­win over­came the loss of his still-

born son last sea­son to lead the 49ers to their first win, a Novem­ber tri­umph over the New York Gi­ants. As for his re­cent is­sue, Good­win said re­join­ing team­mates this week has been “great for my morale. Hope­fully it adds a dif­fer­ent el­e­ment on game day for the whole team.”

Coach Kyle Shana­han said Good­win’s spir­its seemed to im­prove daily, and he hasn’t missed any­thing all week.

“We all know that he’s deal­ing with some things, and hope­fully for him it gave him the chance to just get away from some of that stuff and to come in and be around his team­mates and just play foot­ball to get his mind off of some things,” Shana­han said.

Pierre Garçon (knee) is out for the fourth time in five games, and with Good­win back at split end, Pet­tis could see time at Garçon’s flanker spot, as could Kendrick Bourne. Trent Tay­lor and Richie James are also ex­pected to be ac­tive as op­tions at slot re­ceivers.

• Run­ning back Matt Breida (an­kle) will be in­ac­tive for the first time in his two-year ca­reer, so Jeff Wil­son Jr. will make his first ca­reer start, Shana­han Rookie tackle Mike McGlinchey faces his tough­est test Sun­day when Den­ver’s Von Miller lines up op­po­site him.

con­firmed.

With Jaquiski Tartt (shoul­der) out, the 49ers will have their eighth dif­fer­ent com­bi­na­tion of safeties in 13 games, likely with Mar­cell Har­ris at strong safety and ei­ther D.J. Reed or An­tone Exum at free safety. Reed is also the backup to nickel back K’Waun Wil­liams, who is ques­tion­able with a knee is­sue that has lim­ited him this week.

For­mer 49ers cor­ner­back Tra­maine Brock (ribs) was ruled out by the Bron­cos, along with cor­ner­back Chris Har­ris (bro­ken fibula) and line­backer Shaquil Bar­rett (hip). Line­backer Bran­don Mar­shall (knee) is ques­tion­able.

• The big­gest test of right

tackle Mike McGlinchey’s im­pres­sive rookie sea­son is com­ing in the form of Von Miller, who has 12 ½ sacks.

“He’s crazy ath­letic and has one of the best first steps you’ve seen,” McGlinchey said. “It’s a huge op­por­tu­nity for me to play against a guy like that, a once-in-a-gen­er­a­tion type of player.”

Right tackle Joe Sta­ley said of McGlinchey, his pro­tégé: “He has the right mind­set and that’s the way you have to go into it. … His game’s im­proved all sea­son and I’m ex­cited for that chal­lenge. I’m ex­cited for all of us. It’s an­other op­por­tu­nity to play foot­ball.”

Sta­ley likely will match up on some snaps against

Miller, but also rookie Bradley Chubb, who has 10 sacks and was dubbed by Sta­ley as “Von-es­que, as far as the lever­age he plays off his speed.”

• How does Shana­han size up whether Nick Mul­lens (1-3) or C.J. Beathard (0-5) should back up Jimmy Garop­polo next sea­son af­ter this year’s ef­forts?

“Nick came in and played well, and there hasn’t been a rea­son to put C.J. back in yet, based off of Nick. So, they’re dead even to me,” Shana­han said. “I know C.J. re­ally wants an­other op­por­tu­nity be­fore this year ends. I can’t guar­an­tee that for him. We’ll see how these games play out. But, I see them hav­ing a pretty good com­pe­ti­tion go­ing into next year.”

• Sta­ley is an Art Rooney Sports­man­ship Award fi­nal­ist for the fourth straight sea­son. Other fi­nal­ists are for­mer 49er Ver­non Davis (Wash­ing­ton), Stan­ford prod­uct An­drew Luck (Colts), Drew Brees (Saints), Calais Camp­bell (Jaguars), An­to­nio Gates (Charg­ers), Eric Wed­dle (Ravens) and Tra­mon Wil­liams (Pack­ers).

The Rooney Award will be voted upon by play­ers and an­nounced at NFL Hon­ors on Feb. 2.

Kicker Rob­bie Gould is the 49ers’ nom­i­nee for the Wal­ter Pay­ton NFL Man of The Year Award, which

also will be un­veiled at NFL Hon­ors. Fans can vote for nom­i­nees on Twit­ter us­ing unique hash­tags (Gould’s is #WPMOYCHALLENGEGOULD) for a chance to win $25,000 to­ward that player’s char­ity.

• Punter Bradley Pinion is un­fazed even though his fourth sea­son is wind­ing down with un­cer­tainty. Not only is his con­tract ex­pir­ing, he’ll fin­ish this sea­son with a new long snap­per, af­ter Kyle Nel­son drew a 10-game sus­pen­sion for vi­o­lat­ing the league’s per­for­mance-en­hanc­ing drug pol­icy.

“We’ll miss Nelly. He was a re­ally good long snap­per,” Pinion said of Nel­son, who was with the 49ers since 2014.

Pinion now will field snaps from Colin Holba.

“When you get to this level, they’re all good,” Pinion said. “It’s all about rhythm, and we’ve done a good job with it this week so I’m ex­cited go­ing into the game.”

There’s no word on if a con­tract ex­ten­sion awaits him. “I’m not fo­cused on that now,” Pinion said. “If I don’t play good, we won’t talk about one at all, any­how. I’m at peace with it.”

Pinion’s net av­er­age is a ca­reer-low 38.6 yards per punt, a re­flec­tion more of the cov­er­age unit al­low­ing long re­turns ear­lier in the sea­son.

EZRA SHAW—GETTY IM­AGES

A per­sonal fam­ily is­sue kept Mar­quise Good­win out of the 49ers’ past two games.

RANDY VAZQUEZ — STAFF PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

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