SANTA CLARA, Calif. (Dec. 5, 2006) -- The San Francisco 49ers waived safety Tony Parrish, who once started 121 consecutive games before falling out of favor this season.
The 49ers released Parrish to make room for veteran linebacker Jay Foreman, who was signed to fill in while starting linebacker Derek Smith is out with a hamstring injury.
Parrish, who played four seasons with Chicago before signing with the 49ers in 2002, started every game in his first seven and a half NFL seasons before breaking his leg midway through last year. He was a second-team All-Pro in 2003, when he tied for the league lead with nine interceptions.
But Parrish lost his starting job in San Francisco to newcomer Mark Roman six weeks into this season, and was inactive in the 49ers' last three games.
Parrish declined to criticize the 49ers despite his diminishing role behind Roman and Keith Lewis, who took the other starting safety job away from Mike Adams.
"Tony is a model professional, and he influenced a lot of younger players with his work ethic," 49ers coach Mike Nolan said. "This was a tough decision to make at this time, but with the injuries we had at linebacker, we needed to bring in a player at that position."
Foreman has played for Buffalo, Houston and the New York Giants in seven previous NFL seasons.