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Jewel Hampton in position to shine

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Running back Jewel Hampton is in his third season in the San Francisco 49ers' program.

It is his time to get noticed and it is working. Both coach Jim Harbaugh and general manager Trent Baalke have complimented Hampton's work in the early stages of training camp.

"That's good to hear," Hampton said when told of the praise. "It means something coming from those guys."

Hampton said he believes he is having a strong camp and he knows this is his time to make a strong push for the 53-man roster. The 49ers started training camp with the running back position being a strong unit. However, Kendall Hunter was lost for the season with a torn ACL last Friday and LaMichael James dislocated his elbow. He is expected to miss the preseason.

Hampton was on the active roster but inactive to end the 2012 season and also spent last season on the practice squad.

"The preseason is big for me," Hampton said. "I know the offense and this is my chance. I look at it as a make-or-break."