He talked the talk, but now 49ers safety Donte Whitner is walking the walk ... officially filing an application with the court to legally change his last name to "Hitner," TMZ has learned.
Donte has been talking about making the move ever since the NFL fined him $21k for an illegal hit on a Rams wide receiver earlier this season.
But now, we've learned ... on Tuesday, Whitner sent his attorney Larry Zukerman to file the official request at Probate Court of Cuyahoga County, Ohio.
In the doc, Donte explains that he wants to make the change because it will be beneficial to his career as a pro football player and in other business ventures.
As we previously reported, the process usually takes about 6 weeks before the name change is granted by a judge ... so, Whitner probably won't become Hitner until the end of November ... right around the time the 49ers play Washington, another team that should consider a name change.
Ex-NFL Star Braylon Edwards
Named in Battery Report
For Alleged Photog Attack
10/5/2013 7:32 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
NFL free agent Braylon Edwards has been named in a battery report -- after a photog told cops the ex-49er grabbed him by the ankles outside a Detroit nightclub ... and shook him upside down, TMZ has learned.
A rep for the Detroit PD tells us ... the guy who filed the report claims he shot video of Braylon pushing someone outside a club in Downtown Detroit -- and that's when things turned ugly.
Edwards allegedly told the photog he needed to look at the video -- but when he refused ... Braylon flipped him upside down Suge Knight style to the concrete.
The victim refused medical attention because he only had minor injuries ... and luckily, he held onto the phone containing the video.
A rep for Braylon tells TMZ ... the football player was NEVER physical with the photog -- and the guy only filed a report to "take Braylon's money."
NFL Star Donte Whitner
Gotta Pay NIKE
Before He Can Change Jersey to 'Hitner'
10/4/2013 12:20 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Before 49ers safety Donte Whitner can officially sport a "Hitner" jersey on the field, he's REQUIRED to get Nike's blessing ... and it could cost the player a ton of money.
By now you know, Whitner's vowed to legally change his name to Hitner after the NFL fined him $21k for an illegal hit on a St. Louis Rams player earlier this season.
But it's not gonna happen for AT LEAST another month, because the NFL requires players to legally change their name before they can change their jersey. And in Donte's home state of Ohio ... an applicant has to publish a notice of the name change in a widely circulated publication at least 30 days before a judge will even consider signing off on the move.
Court officials in Ohio tell us the process usually takes AT LEAST six weeks from start to finish.
Then, there's the Nike factor -- an NFL rep tells TMZ before the league will allow a player to change the name on his jersey, he has to purchase any remaining Nike inventory featuring his old name.
But whatever the cost, Donte can probably afford it -- he's reportedly raking in $3.8 million this season.
So, if all goes according to plan, you could see a Hitner jersey on Nov. 17 ... when the 49ers play the Saints.
Stay tuned ...
SF 49ers Aldon Smith
Another DUI Bust
Sunday Game In Doubt
9/20/2013 1:15 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
6:03 PM PDT: Smith has been released from jail. The 49ers expect Smith to play on Sunday.
San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith is on the defensive again -- legally ... he's been busted for DUI and pot possession.
Smith was popped after he crashed his pickup truck around 7 AM. He wasn't hurt ... but the breathalyzer almost was.
The 49ers say they're on top of it. San Francisco plays the Colts on Sunday ... Smith's status for the game is in doubt.
The All Pro linebacker works as a receiver off the field -- receiver of legal charges.
- Arrested in Miami last year for DUI -- later reduced to reckless driving.
- Stabbed during a party at his house in June 2012.
- Named in a lawsuit by a man who claims he was shot at Smith's house during a party.
Smith is currently being held on $5,250 bail.
Harvey Levin Picks NFL Winner
Kaepernick Will Look Good
With One Eyebrow
9/15/2013 7:10 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
No rest for the San Francisco 49ers this week who take on the rival Seattle Seahawks ... in what we're calling Eyebrow Bowl I.
Harvey "Hervis" Levin fell to 0-1 after picking the Giants last week. Can he recover? Let's find out ...
Charles: Big NFC West showdown between the Niners and Seahawks ... who ya got?
Harvey: Remind me what city the Seahawks play in? [pause] Seattle! Let the record reflect I guessed it on my own
Charles: So, your pick? Remember, this is the Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson eyebrow bet game.
Harvey: Right. Well, I'd like to think of this in terms of who would be more awesome with one eyebrow, and ironically the more awesome should be the loser.
Charles: [look of confusion]
Harvey: So, I gotta go with Kaepernick. Which team does he play for?
Charles: You know they're gonna chicken out on the bet, right?
Harvey: I believe the bet should be true, and they should not go the way of Erin Andrews, or rather ... Aaron Rodgers.
Charles: So, let's be clear ... who are you picking to win?
Harvey: The Seahawks. Anyway, I'll be playing tennis.
I'M NO AARON RODGERS
QB Makes Bet, Promises to Keep It
9/10/2013 10:50 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
SF 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick just made a BET with Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson -- whoever loses when they face off this weekend has to shave an eyebrow.
The wager was captured on video in a commercial for EA Sports -- they even shook hands -- and Colin warned Wilson, "Hope you don't like your eyebrow."
It'll be interesting to see if the losing QB actually lives up to the bet ... unlike Green Bay Packers QB/chicken enthusiast Aaron Rodgers ... who still hasn't paid up after losing a bet to Boyz II Men last season.
Just a warning to Colin and Russell -- don't let your mouths write checks your eyebrows can't cash ... you'll never live it down.
HITS THE CLUBS
... Still a Sore Loser
7/10/2013 10:10 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers hit up the Hollywood club scene last night ... rollin' into Bootsy Bellows on the Sunset Strip ... but it's clear, he's still bitter over the infamous 2012 jersey bet.
Let us refresh your memory -- right at the beginning of the '12 season, Rodgers made a friendly wager with one of the guys from Boyz II Men ... that if the Packers lost to the 49ers, he'd have to wear a SF jersey.
The Pack lost -- and Rodgers TOTALLY WEASELED OUT OF THE BET LIKE A CHUMP!!!!
Anyway, we called him out on the b*tch move for months ... and when we ran into him in L.A. last night, it was clear ... dude still holds a grudge.
Whatever, we're still taking him #1 in our fantasy draft.
In Los Angeles
6/18/2013 12:10 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
49ers QB Colin Kaepernick is totally jacked up for next season -- after losing the Super Bowl this year -- showing off his beefy man arms in a black tank top today during a sunny stroll in L.A.
Good thing the shirt's got plenty of neck room. Wouldn't wanna choke ...
49ers Star Chris Culliver
Over NEW Offensive Comments
4/19/2013 10:10 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Cue up another round of apologies for Chris Culliver ... 'cause the SF 49ers player is in trouble again over a new set of offensive comments ... but this time, he went after women ... not gays.
Culliver -- the guy who went to sensitivity training after bashing gays right before the Super Bowl -- posted a screen grab of an iPhone conversation to Instagram last night ... in which he and some friends refer to women as "bitches" and "hoes."
Here's the convo:
Culliver's friend: This bitch talkin bout how I can take her on a nice dat ... yeah my car ... bitch you got a whole dude ... live in work you trippin.
Culliver: Lol yeah hoes be thinking more then they are. Boy I tell you
Culliver's friend: Right these hoes be trippin
The 49ers have released a statement saying "We are aware of the matter, and it is being handled internally."
Culliver's Instagram post has since been pulled down.
I'm the 'Future of the NFL'
3/27/2013 10:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Michael Crabtree's ego has fully recovered from that huge blown call that cost him the Super Bowl -- because he now boldly predicts ... he is the FUTURE OF THE NFL!
The funniest part is ... we weren't even talking about him when he said it.
Here's the scene: the San Francisco 49ers wide receiver was leaving BOA Steakhouse with Dallas Cowboys stud receiver Dez Bryant last night -- and we asked the young stars about NFL rule changes intended to protect players from head injuries.
Neither guy replied ... so we moved on to another topic.
Now, let's play this like "Jeopardy."
Crabtree's answer is ... "You ever seen the future of the NFL? The 2 hottest receivers in the game?"
So, what is the question?
Hint: it has NOTHING to do with Crabtree's or Bryant's talents ... but it IS a hot topic in the NFL.
The Perks of Losing
the Super Bowl ...
3/11/2013 7:50 AM PDT BY Johnny Lopez
San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick may not have a Super Bowl ring, but he still managed to get one perk ... courtside seats at the Clippers game on Sunday.
The 25-year-old brought along a few of his burly pals to watch the Clippers destroy the Detroit Pistons, 129 -97.
It's also fun watching other people lose.
SF 49ers Player Chris Culliver
at Gay Support Org. [Photo]
3/5/2013 1:50 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
TMZ has obtained a photo of San Francisco 49ers player Chris Culliver during his visit to The Trevor Project yesterday -- where he underwent sensitivity training after making homophobic comments before the Super Bowl.
Culliver vowed to educate himself about the challenges faced by the LGBT community after he said he would never welcome a gay football player in his team locker room.
A rep for The Trevor Project tells TMZ Culliver visited the L.A. center on Sunday and Monday ... explaining, "He learned about LGBT, gender identity and how that affects a young person."
The rep adds, "Chris is learning about LGBTQ youth [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning] suicide prevention, and his role as a gatekeeper in helping to reduce risk and prevent suicide."
After his training, Chris told staff he had a "great experience" with the group and "learned a lot."
We're told the people Chris worked with also had "positive feedback" about the NFL player.
The rep says TTP is proud of Chris ... saying, "The first step is to reach out for help and Chris did that.”
With Hot Bikini Chicks
2/19/2013 12:45 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Know why it doesn't suck to be the quarterback who lost the Super Bowl? Because hot girls will drink alcohol out of your belly button no matter what.
The photos just surfaced ... showing 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick partying on board a cruise ship in Mexico last year ... letting girls do body shots off his six pack ... and they're so awesome, we couldn't resist posting them.
More impressive ... the pics were shot BEFORE Colin replaced starting QB Alex Smith.
One less teammate for Chris Culliver to worry about ...