SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – With the NFL labor dispute settled, the San Francisco 49ers will open training camp in Santa Clara on Thursday. John Madden told the KCBS morning crew that the Niners are among the teams facing the biggest obstacles in getting ready for the season. “They have to start from Point A… New coaches in an unsettled quarterback situation with entirely new systems, those are the toughest ones,” said Madden.

Madden also shared his memories about one of his most colorful players during his days coaching the Raiders. Skip Thomas died this week at age 61. “He was one of my favorites… he was a great athlete,” Madden said of his former cornerback known as ‘Dr. Death.’ 

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Thomas also required a lot of attention, Madden said, recalling the time Thomas set up a ramp for a motorcycle jump at training camp before John intervened. “He was going to be Evel Knievel. That’s what I was dealing with.” (7:30)

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Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.

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