The Niners have put center Eric Heitmann on injured reserve. The move clears the way for the addition of new linebacker Thaddeus Gibson, who comes to the team after he was let go last week by the Steelers.
Heitmann was listed out with a neck injury, though he hadn’t played all season after breaking the fibula in his left leg early in training camp. He was expected to miss up to two months and returned to practice Sept. 29. David Baas(notes) took his place on the starting offensive line.
Heitmann, a ninth-year pro out of Stanford, was going to miss at least another four weeks with a neck injury that also happened in training camp. Before his injuries this year, Heitmann had started every game at center each of the past three seasons. He played 14 games there in 2006 before breaking his right leg, needing surgery and missing the final two games.
Gibson was inactive for the Steelers’ first six games before they cut him Sunday. A fourth-round draft pick this year out of Ohio State, selected 116th overall, the 23-year-old Gibson finished his collegiate career with 82 tackles, 10 sacks, 25 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and an interception in 35 games.