In April, there were reports that the 49ers were trying to trade running back LaMichael James and it was a notion that seemed to sit well with James when he opted to pass up a $50,000 workout bonus by failing to attend the start of the offseason program.
James was not dealt during the draft, which may have been enough to convince him to report to work along with his teammates. Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee reports that James was at the team’s workouts this week.
The 49ers stressed that the workouts were voluntary when asked about James’ absence and said that they weren’t concerned that he was home in Texas, where his youngest child was recently born. Their backfield depth chart makes it easy for them to shrug off any absence.
The 49ers drafted Carlos Hyde this month to go with Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter, Marcus Lattimore and James, making for a crowded group that will have to be thinned out before the season starts. James has seen most of his action as a returner to this point and may need to show he’s capable of more than that in order to continue attending 49ers practices into the regular season.