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Patriots hire 49ers free agent Bubba Ventrone as assistant special teams coach

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San Francisco 49ers free agent Bubba Ventrone has decided to end his playing career. The New England Patriots are hiring him to be a special teams assistant coach.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

One member of the San Francisco 49ers 2015 free agent class has found a destination. The New England Patriots have hired former special teams player Raymond "Bubba" Ventrone as their assistant special teams coach. Ventrone spent the last two seasons of his NFL career with the 49ers, and apparently has decided it is time to move on from playing to coaching.

Ventrone started his NFL career with the New England Patriots. He signed as an undrafted free agent in 2005, and spent the season on New England's practice squad. He missed some time with injury and ended up playing for the New York Jets in 2007, the Patriots in 2008, the Cleveland Browns from 2009 to 2012, and then the 49ers the last two seasons. Ventrone was initially cut at the end of training camp, but returned to the team for Week 6. He was inactive a pair of games last in the season due to injury, and finished the season on injured reserve.

The departure of Ventrone removes a notable special teams player, with fellow special teamer Kassim Osgood also entering free agency. Osgood is older than Ventrone, but both were valuable cogs in the 49ers special teams units. While some folks will be waiting for the 49ers to sign the usual big names, I expect at least a couple additions that will join Thomas McGaughey's special teams units.