49ers move forward without linebacker Aldon Smith

JANIE McCAULEY, AP Sports Writer

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Carlos Rogers understands a key piece of San Francisco’s defense is missing with the absence of Aldon Smith, yet the veteran cornerback is determined to make sure it never becomes an excuse for the team’s recent poor play.

The 49ers are moving forward without their star linebacker and sacks leader as he begins rehab for substance abuse and an indefinite leave from the team.

While everybody in the locker room is rooting for his recovery, his fellow defenders are now focused on getting the most from the guys who will take over for him: Dan Skuta and Corey Lemonier, among others.

A defense that has been dominant stopping the run ranks a surprisingly low 29th in the league, with opposing offenses running against the NFC champion Niners at every chance.


AP NFL website:
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Recent Headlines

in Sports

Rangers replace Maple Leafs atop hockey’s most valuable list


The Rangers, who return to the top of the rankings for the first time since 2004, were valued at $1.2 billion

in Black Friday, Lifestyle

Secrets for getting the best pieces of turkey


Tips for making sure your turkey is moist and flavorful this Thanksgiving.

in Lifestyle



Check out the latest shopping tricks, turkey tips, and Black Friday ads.

in Black Friday, National

Thanksgiving getaway: Cheap gas but fears of terrorism


That other Thanksgiving tradition — congested highways and jammed airports — is underway with gas prices low and terrorism fears high.

in National

2015 to be the hottest year in history


This year will be the hottest on record and 2016 could be hotter due to the El Niño weather pattern, the World Meteorological Organization said.