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Fewer 49ers penalties on Singletary's holiday wish list

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Mike Singletary talked to tight end Vernon Davis about his two false start penalties in last Thursday's win against Chicago. Singletary also met with cornerback Tarell Brown about an unnecessary roughness flag.

The San Francisco 49ers committed nine penalties, costing them 77 yards, in their 10-6 win over the Bears and Singletary wants to clean things up before the team plays at Green Bay on Sunday.

"To me, they're what you call selfish penalties," Singletary said. "That just can't happen. It won't happen."

The 49ers are in the middle of the NFC pack when it comes to penalties, 60 of them in nine games for 487 yards, but they rank near the bottom in total offense. That makes each penalty seem more severe.

Brown's penalty resulted in a field position disadvantage as the Bears buried the Niners at their own 6-yard line.

"It was definitely a selfish penalty," Brown said. "I let my emotions get the best of me. I apologized to him (Singletary). I won't let it happen again."

While safety Mark Roman eventually bailed out the Niners with an interception that led to Joe Nedney's field goal, Singletary would prefer not to give the opposition so many free yards, and not have to climb out of a hole offensively.

"That's the kind of stuff you don't want to get into because it makes it about you," Singletary said. "That's the last time this year that you will see us have those many penalties because that's one of the things we can't do. We are a disciplined team and we've got to do a much better job of that. And, we will."

Quarterback Alex Smith, who will make his third straight start, is still finding his timing and said it was important for receivers to run precise routes.

"I guess you always hope to be precise and accurate," Smith said. "You have to be able to make decisions and then it comes down to throwing the ball. I think it is crucial to any offense to have that trust between each other that he is going to be where he is supposed to be and I am going to put that ball where it is supposed to be and that it is going to work out."

Singletary named Josh Morgan to start at wide receiver over Isaac Bruce. That means Smith will be working with two young receivers in Morgan and Michael Crabtree.

"He worked extremely hard this offseason and worked hard last year to get to where he is," Smith said. "This is a big opportunity for him and it's a big opportunity for us. I feel really good about Josh being out there."

Morgan, who attended run-oriented Virginia Tech, isn't making a big deal out of it.

"I'm excited just to go out there and get another win," he said. "I know I need to make sure my routes are as precise as they can be."

Morgan said he always pays attention to advice offered by Bruce.

"He's been my personal life coach," Morgan said. "He's given me advice on how to get ready for every game. He's so patient and he's one of the best route guys who ever played football."

NOTES: CB Nate Clements (shoulder) and T Joe Staley (knee) are out. DT Demetric Evans will likely be available and LB Takeo Spikes (shoulder) remains day-to-day. ... RB Glen Coffee, who suffered a concussion two weeks ago, will also be available. ... Singletary called the play of reserve tackle LT Barry Sims "outstanding. It's a pleasant surprise. I'm really excited about what he has been able to bring to that position." ... Smith called the extra few days a "kind of a mini second bye week. When you are this busy and you finally get your time off, you find that doing nothing sometimes is the most enjoyable thing."

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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