The San Francisco 49ers signed wide receivers Austin Collie and Lavelle Hawkins to one-year deals Friday after both veteran free agents worked out for the team earlier in the day.
The 49ers made the moves to help bolster a receiver unit that has been decimated by injuries. San Francisco began training camp last week without top wideout Michael Crabtree — out for at least half the season after tearing his Achilles’ tendon in May — and three other receivers have missed time this week.
Collie played the past four seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, but appeared in only one game last year due to injury. He had 173 receptions during his first three seasons with the Colts.
Hawkins was released by New England on Wednesday after playing five seasons with the Tennessee Titans. Hawkins had 47 receptions for the Titans in 2011 and 71 overall with Tennessee.
Mario Manningham, who started 10 games at wide receiver for the 49ers last season, has yet to practice this summer while he continues to rehabilitate a knee injury suffered in a Dec. 23 game. Kyle Williams — who like Manningham tore knee ligaments last season — and receivers A.J. Jenkins and Kassim Osgood each have missed practices this week because of apparent hamstring injuries.
To make room on their roster for the two newcomers, the 49ers waived rookie center Sherman Carter and rookie punter Colton Schmidt.
Cooper seeks counseling
As a furor escalated over the use of a racial epithet by Eagles receiver Riley Cooper, and Philadelphia’s mayor criticized the team for issuing no punishment beyond a fine, Cooper took an indefinite leave Friday to seek counseling.
Michael A. Nutter, Philadelphia’s mayor, called the receiver’s remarks “repugnant, insensitive and ignorant.” “This incident is a disgrace and cannot be excused by just paying a fine, as if it were a parking ticket,” Nutter, who is black, said in a statement.
Chip Kelly, the Eagles’ first-year coach, said the team planned for Cooper to return. But some of Cooper’s teammates have expressed stunned indignation at his behavior. And Nutter’s remarks seemed certain to add pressure on the Eagles to part ways with the receiver.
At a Kenny Chesney concert in June, Cooper said he had been drinking when he argued with a black security guard and used a racial slur in threatening to fight every black person in sight. After video of the incident surfaced this week, Cooper apologized to his teammates. The Eagles fined him an undisclosed amount.
Around the league
The Seattle Seahawks agreed to terms with veteran wide receiver Early Doucet and waived/injured defensive end Kenneth Boatwright. Doucet played in 12 games with three starts last season for the Arizona Cardinals and had 28 receptions for 207 yards. He was released by the Cardinals in March. ... The Cincinnati Bengals signed defensive tackle Vaughn Meatoga of Hawaii. ... Middle linebacker Colin McCarthy will miss at least a week after hurting his right hamstring, and coach Mike Munchak says he will not play in Tennessee’s preseason opener. ... The Jacksonville Jaguars were awarded rookie long-snapper Luke Ingram off waivers from Pittsburgh but thabr no plans to part ways with veteran Jeremy Cain or rookie Carson Tinker. All three will compete for one roster spot.