Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Harbaugh wants Phil Dawson back with 49ers next year

By Curtis Crabtree

December 18, 2013

San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh isn’t taking the consistency of kicker Phil Dawson for granted.

After suffering the struggles of David Akers a season ago, Harbaugh is thrilled with the job Dawson has done for the team this season.

However, Dawson was only signed to a one-year deal this season. It led Harbaugh to make a public plea for Dawson to stick with the team beyond this season.

“Phil, stay beyond this season, please,” he said Monday, via Ron Kroichick of the San Francisco Chronicle. “I’ve been remiss asking him to do that. Let me officially ask him to stay beyond this season.”

While the 49ers made it to the Super Bowl last season, the kicking situation was a problem that could have kept them from winning the NFC. Akers made just 29 of his 42 field goals for the 49ers in the regular season last year and the team brought in Bily Cundiff to compete for the job.

Akers did convert all three attempts in the Super Bowl and was 4 for 5 in the playoffs, but the 49ers signed Dawson this season with the hope it would fix the issues of a season ago.

Dawson has been a model of consistency for San Francisco this year. He’s converted 27 of 30 field goals on the year and is a perfect 38 for 38 on point after attempts.

“Twenty-four straight field goals — he has been a top-notch guy on the team from the day he got here, a real football player in every sense of the word. That doesn’t always get affixed to kickers and punters, but Phil is that kind of teammate. . . . A-plus-plus. Very happy with Phil,” Harbaugh said.

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