Barlow the latest 49er to be traded 

August, 21, 2006
The 49ers' trade of Kevan Barlow came down mid-morning Sunday, hours before the team's preseason game against the Raiders. Barlow was scheduled to get 10-12 touches in the Raiders game. The 49ers rejected the first couple of offers from the Jets on Sunday morning, but the Jets called back and offered the pure fourth-round choice without an upgrade. With the Jets in rebuilding mode, their fourth-round pick could be among the top picks in the round, making it almost like a low third-rounder. Coach Mike Nolan thought that running back was one of the deepest positions on the 49ers. He likes Frank Gore as the starter and has confidence in Maurice Hicks as the backup. What has surprised him is the running ability of former Penn State quarterback Michael Robinson, a big back who has impressed Nolan in some short-yardage and third-down situations.

In the past 14 months, the 49ers have traded away nine players, mainly former draft choices of former general manager Terry Donahue. Barlow is just the lastest. They've traded away quarterbacks Tim Rattay, Ken Dorsey and Cody Pickett, defensive end John Engelberger, wide receivers Brandon Lloyd and Rashaun Woods, cornerback Mike Rumph and linebacker Jamie Winborn. The 49ers made significant upgrades with the acquisitions of cornerback Sammy Davis and quarterback Trent Dilfer. They are also stockpiling draft choices for next year that can be used to upgrade the defense.

Robinson done for season? The feeling I get out of the Vikings is that wide receiver Koren Robinson won't be playing for them this year because of his recent driving incident, which reportedly involved alcohol. The team won't comment and it shouldn't because a lot of things are going on in Robinson's life. The Vikings won't make any rash decision. First, they will wait to see if the NFL determines that he violated anything within the substance abuse policy. Robinson already has been hit with a four-game suspension and could be facing a one-year suspension. Robinson also has problems in Seattle, where a judge could rule that Robinson violated probation, thereby activating a 364-day jail sentence. Once Robinson gets through that -- if he can get through that -- the team has to decide whether to take him back or not, and it doesn't appear the Vikings will bring him back.