On the same day Vernon Davis and Alex Boone were holding out for new contracts, there was a surprise absentee on the first day of the 49ers’ mandatory minicamp in Santa Clara, California.
Cornerback Eric Wright has retired from professional football. The 28 year old filed his paperwork with the league Tuesday, ending a tumultuous seven-year career marred by two arrests for DUI and a four-game suspension for performance-enhancing drug use.
Wright played just 120 snaps in seven games with the 49ers in 2013, recording seven tackles and an interception. He was hoping to compete for the nickel spot this offseason. The leading candidates are now Perrish Cox, Jimmie Ward and Darryl Morris.
Wright’s tenure in San Francisco got off to a rocky start in July, when the 49ers acquired him from the Buccaneers only to have the move voided because Wright failed a physical. He had signed a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the Buccaneers a year earlier. His off-the-field issues, however, led to an early exit from Tampa Bay.
As for Davis and Boone, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh voiced his disappointment for their absence Tuesday.
“I’m disappointed in that decision for them not to be here,” Harbaugh told Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle. “There’s a voluntary segment to the offseason and we appreciate those guys volunteering to make the team better. Now it’s mandatory and not the decision I envisioned being the 49er way.”
Safety Eric Reid had this to say about Davis: “He’s making a personal decision. … If he comes for training camp, that would be great. But right now it’s looking like he’s not here, so we’ll put other guys in until he decides to come back.”
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