Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Kyle Williams is prone to injury.
Kyle Williams is trying to win the starting wide receiver job opposite Anquan Boldin. He is also coming off a season-ending ACL injury suffered in the 11th game of the 2012 season.
Prior to the injury, Williams had only 14 receptions, so he wasn't really making a huge impact anyway.
Williams, who made a good recovery from the knee injury, then strained his hamstring early in training camp, which set him back. He has not been able to distinguish himself from the other receiver candidates.
With Michael Crabtree out until late in the season, at best, the competition for the second and third receiver jobs is quite crowded. The 49ers need production from these two spots, so the players who win these jobs will need to contribute.
In addition to Williams, the 49ers are considering Marlon Moore, A.J. Jenkins, Chad Hall, Ricardo Lockette, Kassim Osgood, Quinton Patton and Chuck Jacobs.
Mario Manningham is not expected back until the middle of the season. However, the 49ers recently signed veterans Austin Collie and Lavelle Hawkins, making a crowded situation even more competitive.
Williams has not been able to stay healthy for an entire season in three years with the 49ers. The same is true over his four seasons in college at Arizona State. It is apparent that head coach Jim Harbaugh does not have a strong belief that Williams will be able to stay healthy.
Another indication that Williams has lost favor with Harbaugh is that LaMichael James is getting the first crack at returning punts. James had problems catching punts in practice last year, which is why he was never back there.
However, James worked hard at it and now has the inside track at the job. If James is successful, it further decreases the value Williams has for the 49ers.