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Niners to meet with Justin Smith about playing future

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The San Francisco 49ers are still waiting to hear from Justin Smith about whether or not he plans to play in 2015. That decision could be coming soon.

Team general manager Trent Baalke told SiriusXM NFL Radio on Tuesday that he plans to meet with the 35-year-old defensive lineman on Wednesday and Thursday to gain a "better answer" on Smith's future.

The 49ers planned ahead by using the 17th overall pick in the draft on Oregon defensive lineman Arik Armstead, although Baalke has said that selection had nothing to do with Smith.

Smith recently said that he feels healthy, but noted that "everybody feels good at this time of the year." He's been a rock during his NFL career, starting all but two games since 2002. The five-time Pro Bowler still made plays on film last season, but Smith's body has taken a toll.

Even if he doesn't play right away, it's fair to wonder if Smith might consider joining the team later in the summer -- maybe even during the season. If he returns, we still view the old-school Smith as one of the more productive players at his position.

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