The San Francisco 49ers are getting closer and closer to full health, but there are still a handful of players recovering from injuries. One notable player is defensive tackle Darnell Dockett, who is recovering from tearing his ACL last August. He has been attending the 49ers offseason workout program, but has not been participating in drills. While he is not taking part in drills during the mandatory minicamp, he expects to be ready when Week 1 rolls around.
#49ers Darnell Dockett not practicing but ACL recovery OK: "I'll be ready when we play Minnesota (in opener). I'm way ahead of schedule."— Cam Inman (@CamInman) June 9, 2015
It remains to be seen what his role will be in 2015. He is a long-time starter, but there are enough questions about his work in run support that he could find himself in more of a complementary role. One option could be having Glenn Dorsey and Quinton Dial start in the 3-4 base defense, and bringing in Dockett and Tank Carradine on passing downs. Although the 49ers lost Justin Smith and Ray McDonald, they have a lot of options moving forward. It remains to be seen how well they will produce in starting roles, but the options are there.
Dockett will be one of the more outspoken members of the team. He has been asked about getting acquainted with the 49ers offensive linemen with whom he has previously had fierce battles. He had this amusing exchange with Alex Boone.
Longtime adversaries Darnell Dockett and Alex Boone passed each other several times this week before they stopped to talk. ...— Matt Barrows (@mattbarrows) June 9, 2015
... Said Dockett: "I asked if he was retiring. He said, 'Nah.'"— Matt Barrows (@mattbarrows) June 9, 2015
I had to figure a joke like this was going to come along eventually. Maybe it becomes a running joke the rest of the way. It's only funny moving forward so long as nobody else in fact actually retires!