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Darnell Dockett released by San Francisco 49ers months into two-year deal

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Back on September 1, San Francisco 49ers head coach, Jim Tomsula, made it clear that he expected veteran defensive end Darnell Dockett to be available to play in Week One despite a rib injury.

Surprise exit

Fast forward to September 4th, and whilst Dockett may well be ready to play on opening weekend of the 2015 NFL season, it won't be for the San Francisco 49ers.

That's after the NFC West franchise opted today to release the three-time Pro-Bowler.


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Dockett, a Pro Bowler in '07, '09 and 2010, only joined the 49ers this offseason after 10 years with the Arizona Cardinals and, although the veteran has been dealing with a rib issue in recent weeks, the decision to release him without playing a regular season snap is somewhat bizarre - especially considering the number of high profile names who have left the franchise of their own accord this year.

What now?

With Dockett having missed the entire 2014 season with an ACL injury, the fact that the 49ers have seen fit to send him packing just a couple of months into a two-year, $7.25 million deal that included no guarantees suggests that father time is starting to have his say on the veteran's career.

Even so, with over 40 sacks and 459 tackles to his name in the NFL, the defensive end is likely to have offers come his way in the next few days.

As Ian Rapoport alluded to above, Dockett's former team, the Arizona Cardinals, could be amongst those interested. 

49ers fans: Are you happy to see Dockett leave without playing a snap, and where does it leave your team? Have your say in the comments below...

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San Francisco 49ers
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