Work. Don't worry.
It's one of many mantras commonly said around 49ers headquarters and it’s what
The hard-working linebacker made San Francisco’s 53-man roster by setting an example of the daily effort needed to improve.
Jim Harbaugh pointed to the 6-foot-2, 240-pound linebacker’s determination in practice and preseason games as one of the main reasons Stupar made the 49ers roster as one of the team’s five inside linebackers.
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“Ever since Nate got here late last season, was added to the practice squad, the way he’s worked and the way he’s ascended as a football player and improved has been very good for our football team and for himself as a player,” the 49ers coach said after announcing the team’s 53-man roster. “You get so excited about that. And gosh, maybe there’s more there too and he can keep ascending. You talk about it being a meritocracy, that was evidenced with Nate Stupar.”
Stupar said it was a surreal feeling to be a part of San Francisco’s team photo on Tuesday. Stupar, a former Penn State linebacker, was drafted in the seventh-round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders. He made stints on three practice squads last season, Oakland, Philadelphia and finished the year with San Francisco.
All the experiences Stupar had in his first NFL season made him appreciate his current standing with the 49ers.
“I’ve been working very hard for the past two years and it finally paid off,” he said.
It was a nerve-wracking experience for the young linebacker to learn his NFL fate.
Stupar figured no news was good news on cut day.
“You find out by not getting the call, which is a good thing,” he said. “I was waiting all morning, just hoping not to get a call and then you go to the team meeting room and they say, ‘Congratulations.’”
Stupar, however, isn’t resting on his preseason performance. He’ll continue to push himself every day in practice to continue his ascent.
“It’s time to work even harder,” Stupar said. “I’m excited, can’t wait to get my opportunity so we’ll see what happens.”
Stupar will continue to learn behind All-Pro, Pro Bowl inside linebackers
“I just have to take it day-by-day, week-by-week and get better each and every day by learning from the best, Pat and NaVorro,” Stupar said.