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Wright returns to 49ers practice for first time this season

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The Canadian Press
10/15/2013 10:47:23 PM
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SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Eric Wright was joined by a handful of players who were able to participate in practice for the first time on Tuesday.

Wright, who grew up in San Francisco and attended Riordan High, less than five miles from Candlestick Park, was originally traded to the 49ers by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in late July, a few weeks after he was arrested for a DUI. He failed his physical and the trade was nullified.

He eventually signed on as a free agent and placed on the reserved/non-football injury list.

"It felt good just to be able to practice, put a helmet on and communicate with my teammates," Wright said. "It's a lot different than looking at a piece of paper or watching film. The reps mean a lot."

He was also joined by veteran wide receiver Mario Manningham and rookie defensive linemen Tank Carradine and Quinton Dial.

Wright, in his seventh season in the NFL, said there were no health issues that would keep him off the field.

"No one wants to miss a lot of time but to go back out there with a healthy body is really not normal," Wright said. "It's a different experience and I'm happy I am healthy at this time of the season after taking a beating for years."

Wright has 14 career interceptions, returning two for touchdowns, including a 94-yard return with the Browns.

"I'm just grateful to be playing for the team I grew up watching," Wright said. "I'm able to live out my dream."

Manningham can add depth to a thin position for the 49ers, who have been without former No. 1 draft pick Michael Crabtree.

"I'm just trying to get my confidence back," Manningham said. "I'm learning the routes, trying to keep my quickness and get separation from the defenders. I'm doing everything I can to get back to 100 per cent."

Manningham suffered a torn ACL in his knee near the end of last season, two weeks after he returned from a shoulder injury. He threw his crutches away a while ago and refuses to think about them, or the knee.

"I'm trying to keep a positive attitude," he said. "About my knee and being a good team player. I've stayed in touch with what the team is doing."

Manningham thinks he'll return stronger than when he left. That's because he had nothing else to do during his rehab but to build muscle throughout his body.

"I'm going to ease into it," said Manningham, who has 202 career receptions in three years with the New York Giants and one with the 49ers. "I'm not going to put a timetable on it. I haven't put it all together yet. By the time I step out there Sunday I'll be 100 per cent. I don't know which Sunday."

Carradine and Dial both came to training camp with injuries.

The 49ers have a three-week window to decide whether to add any or all of the four players to their 53-man roster.

NOTES: Defensive lineman Glenn Dorsey, who left Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals with a right hamstring strain, reported feeling better on Tuesday. "It felt pretty bad when I did it," he said. "But I'll be all right. The MRI was cool." ... Guard Mike Iupati said Sunday's 18-play, 89-yard drive in the fourth quarter was about "executing plays. It wasn't like we had a lot of big plays. We just moved the ball." Iupati said RB Frank Gore was an inspiration for the offensive line during the drive. "You want to open those holes for me because he runs so hard." ... The 49ers last beat the Tennessee Titans in 1999, though they've played just twice since then.

Eric Wright (Photo: J. Meric/Getty Images)

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(Photo: J. Meric/Getty Images)
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