49ers 10, Texans 23: Grades

Here are the grades for the 49ers 23-10 preseason loss to the Houston Texans.

QUARTERBACKS: B. Colin Kaepernick was decent, completing a short pass to Anquan Boldin, overthrowing a deep pass to Torrey Smith and intentionally throwing a pass away. He clearly needs more work on his deep passes—he overthrew Smith by about 10 six yards. Blaine Gabbert played into the third quarter and was fantastic. He had the second-team offense rolling at a much quicker pace than the first-team offense was moving. Rookie undrafted quarterback Dylan Thompson was unspeakable, so we won’t speak about him.

RUNNING BACKS: B. Carlos Hyde had a nice run around the left side that was called back due to a holding penalty on tight end Vance McDonald. Kendall Gaskins had a strong four-yard run to the right side of the Niners’ starting offensive line. Mike Davis had a nice 11-yard gain on a run he started to the left and then cut back all the way across the field. But the best run of the game belonged to former Rugby League star Jarryd Hayne. He ran a stretch zone run to the left, exploded through the line, made a defensive back miss and picked up 53 yards. Hayne seems to have a good feel for zone plays, which do not require running backs to run with low pad level.

WIDE RECEIVERS: C. Starters Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith received just one target each, so the receiver who stood out was Jerome Simpson, who made a 25-yard catch-and-run in the second quarter. He seems to be the leader in the No. 3-receiveer competition.

TIGHT ENDS: B. The best tight end of the game was Garrett Celek, who caught two passes for 29 yards and one score. Vance McDonald and Derek Carrier each caught one pass and committed one penalty.

OFFENSIVE LINE: B. Kaepernick faced pressure once out of three drop backs. Gabbert, for the most, part did not face pressure, partly because he got rid of the ball so quickly. Although on one play he scrambled even though there was no pressure, and ended up running into a sack. In the running game, the first-team offense struggled running both to the right and left until Hayne broke through a huge hole on the left side of the offensive line during his big run.

DEFENSIVE LINE: B. Allowed only 3.3 yards per carry and stuffed the Texans’ offense at the goal line six times in a row. That was good. The defensive line also allowed Texans’ starting running back Alfred Blue to average 6.6 yards per carry, and generated no pass rush. That wasn’t good. Pass-rushing specialist Tank Carradine was particularly ineffective. Rookie Arik Armstead may already be a better interior pass-rusher than Carradine, although Armstead seemed to struggle against the run.

LINEBACKERS: C. Starting inside linebackers Nick Moody and Shayne Skov got torched in coverage, and starting outside linebackers Ahmad Brooks and Corey Lemonier generated no pass rush.

SECONDARY: F. Allowed 12 completions on 15 pass attempts by Texans quarterbacks in the first half, and allowed a 119 passer rating in the game.

SPECIAL TEAMS: B. Hayne gained 24 yards on two punt returns, and 33 yards on one kick return. He seems like a natural as a returner, and probably the best returner on the team. Rookie punter Bradley Pinion averaged 48.8 yards per punt. The punter he replaced, Andy Lee, averaged 46.8 yards per punt last season.

    1. My post below may have been overstated and I apologize for that…I meant by now the koolaide consumers will eventually stop after a few lopsided losses and recognize that I was correct with my astute football acumen all along (that the 49ers are just a bad football team) and should feel lucky to be on the same field as the Calgary Stampede of the Canadian Football League!!!

      1. @TomD,

        You must REALLY love yourself to DUP your Post!

        And as far as your prediction….

        Gee, You’re Brilliant!

        Can I have your Autograph?

    1. I guess everyone will finally stop drinking the Koolaide and admit that I was right all along…I know there’s a few of you who will have to be dragged away from the punchbowl kicking and screaming, but you were probably the wall-flowers who gathered around the punchbowl during the high school dances so I’m not worried…By now you’ll admit that the 49er’s could not compete against the Roughriders of the Canadian Football League!

      1. It’s first game preseason you goof. We all overreact during preseason. Let’s see how team performs week one before you start writing obituaries.

            1. 1st 4 games usually give a hint at who’s who in a new season. Some say with the new CBA practice restrictions that PreSeason runs into Game#3-4.

              1. It does…its odd, they cut down on off season work, the preseason had been cut from 6 games to 4 in 78 (and players are pushing for a 2 game preseason) and theres less hitting in practice than ever…and the product on the field isnt that great for the first few weeks…hmm, I wonder why.

                And all of that cutbacks have not seemed to slow the injuries (probably because too many guys are on performance enhancers and their bodies/tendons just arent made for that). Its strange, but as a youth (80s/90s) didn’t seem like we heard of as many tendon tears as we do now, especially with non contact.

        1. 1-9 in 3rd down situations…Again, drinking the koolaide causes short-term memory (of history loss)…This problem is as reoccuring as the delay of penalties on Kap last year, but the QB gets the lions share of the media glare. 3rd down failures have not been fixed nor will they because the Niners are one-sided with no understanding of the in game passing adjustments due to amateur coaching and GM hour (regarding passing intellect)

      2. TomD knows a ton about the old Joe Montana days, but alarmingly can’t distinguish between a preseason performance and games that matter with the starters going the distance and actual game planning. Hmmm…

        1. How much insight do you need to know that Montana and Walsh were good? There’s always a few howling at the moon.

        2. Yeah,

          I guess I underestimated Tomsula’s coaching ability when he played all the 49ers starters in the last game of the football season while the other team pulled all of its starters…Enjoy your Hall of Fame new coach and those game day parking rates if you care to put your money where your mouth is.

        1. runman, tell me (afm) amazing football mind your assessment of Tomsula’s coaching philosophy…Again, why do I keep encountering Niner fans with short term memory loss (or history). We only have Tomsula’s, ONE NFL COACHED FOOTBALL GAME as a basis or starting point to project his success or failure.
          However, Tim Kawakami (San Jose Merc) as I did (5 months ago) mentions his coaching staff as a major reason for the impending failure…However, I’ll venture to say your impending failure in any scholastic or employment related field would be research…Do not fear reading a book or newspaper once every 10 years.

      3. If there is anything I’ve learned over the years its that you don’t put much stock in preseason games.
        The best example of that is found not too long ago when the Detroit Lions won all their preseason games then reeled off 16 straight losses in the regular season.

        I believe in the theory that you allow your starters to get their feet wet for a couple of series at the start of the game and then bring in your extended players to see if they can become part of the roster.
        I think that we have an idea who will be the starters on offense and defense already with only a couple of question marks on O-line and LB going forward.

        The last game of the preseason is basically a glorified practice in which the starters will likely play an entire half. But even in that game, the score doesn’t matter because by the last preseason game your starters should be established and ready for the regular season.

        Preseason is a testing ground for rookies and hopefuls.

    1. I think he made team based in that game. Looked better than gaskins and Davis has ST ability. Davis still makes it though.

  1. Even though Kap didn’t do much, he seemed different to me as I watched him drop back to pass. I can’t put my finger on it, but I had the feeling he was more in command of the situation even if the result was only positive the one time.

    1. There was only one play where I thought he looked like 2014 Kaep – the one where he felt some pressure that probably wasn’t as urgent as he thought, and ended up scrambling around before throwing it away. But even then he did a good job of keeping his eyes downfield.

      1. I was at the game.
        The throw to Smith looked good. Torrey seemed to lost track of the ball momentaneally and lost a step. But for sure it was not overthrown by 10 yards.

        Linebackers were not impressive (goal libe stand aside), and the pass rush was awful. If we have no pass rush our secondary will suffer.

        Lots of TC players that stood out had a pretty bad game.

        Disagree about the OL on rushing game. There were yards left on the table by the RBs.

        Patton was a non factor. He might have to battle White for the last WR spot.

        1. You’re right even on TV its was overthrown by 2-5yds not 10. It did appear to just be over thrown not way over thrown.

          1. The TV (or at least the replay on the stadium) did not show Torrey losing a step while tracking the ball. But he did.
            If not for that he could have had a shot to catch it.

            1. It was easily 5-7 yards, but instead of debating the yardage, it wasn’t close. Which shows that Grant and other writers have been right on during camp. Kap the Gunslinger needs to go back to his old motion for long passes. His long passes were never the problem. It has always been the mid to short passes where he keeps throwing like MadBum. Apparently Gabbert took advice better and implemented it as Logan told him he’d find accuracy if he toned the velocity down.

              As for D-fence, Purcell made the team tonight. Awesome story. Offense, Rugby made the squad and made Australia proud.

              1. Purcell was a beast if he keeps this up he will start and our # 1
                draft pick whats up with his game he stunk it up leverage was poor against the # 2 and #3’s not staying in the passing lanes getting his arms up being 6 7 and all it was not good at all. along with poor tackling and just bad linebacker play skov and moody and lamineor we took a step back on defense for tonight but we can only improve, I will see mr tarft looked very good and #31 McCray was awesome , ausie was awesome no scadem go get um attitude mr miller thru some great blocks he’s back, the plays got off faster but once gabbert was out we were way out of sync.

              2. It doesn’t matter how many yards it was, it was not a great throw and not complete. At this point in keeps career, we cannot rate him on near misses. We will see in a few weeks where he really is.

              3. Freaking out about a single overthrow? Why, that never happens to NFL QBs.

                I see hand-wringing in certain quarters is in midseason form.

          2. Yes. 2-3 yds. DEFINITELY was not 10. There’s no need to exaggerate. The point that they need to get in sync can still get made. But 10 makes it seems like it wasn’t close. And it was very close.

            1. As we “all” know, repetition makes the scheme effective without thinking too much. Grant’s constant exaggeration of the most trivial Kaepernick faults is just a sign that his repetition has got his scheme to a level where he doesn’t have to think about it.

              1. htwaits- I just don’t trust his evaluations of Kaep. Remember his stating that Kaep was screaming at Patton for 15 seconds. Well that might be true, but I would ask him if he actually could hear what Kaep was saying. He might have actually been pumping him up. That might actually make some sense since they are really good friends. We often see what we want to see. It’s kind of like the “boy who cried wolf” he was wrong so many times that when he actually was right no one believed him.

              2. Kap’s deep passes are a legitimate issue. They wouldn’t be if he was putting them on receivers and they weren’t coming down with the ball. He’s not giving receivers a chance.

              1. Your trust level when evaluating Kaepernick is on par with Hillary Clintons’ server statements….

              2. It was close enough. I understand your desire to make mountains out of molehills, but missing a pass in the first preseason game may fit your narrative, but many of us are not buying it. Sorry.

              3. No, it wasn’t close enough. It’s never close enough if it’s not catchable. And I’m not making a mountain out of molehill. Just pointing out a trend that should be a non-issue by the beginning of the regular season.

  2. Grant I agree with your grades for the most part. I believe that most of the problems in coverage [LB's excluded] were breakdowns in coverage responsibility. I felt many of the DB’s played well played very well in individual coverages and run support. I was impressed with Acker, Johnston, Reaser and Taryy

    1. I won’t be one at this point. But Gabbert’s performance made me breathe a little easier should Kap get injured. Let’s see if he can keep it up.

      1. He doesn’t look downfield though.
        Just short passes.

        Better than last year of course, but he could have burned the Texans secondary a couple of times. The WR were one on one.

  3. Gabbert came to the Niners shell shocked from years of abuse in Jacksonville. The time he spent getting his bearings really helped him to achieve what could be a good career starting this year.

    1. Yeah, he looked very good tonight. That’s most confident and in control I recall seeing him. I actually think his best play was an incompletion – that pass to Simpson where Simpson turned his head too late was a real heads up play, knowing he had the OLB coming at him free based on the blocking assignments and calmly putting the ball right where Simpson could (and should) have made a play on it.

  4. I think alot of Alfred Blue’s 6.6 yards per carry was due to slow pursuit. Its easy to get spoiled watching Willis/Bowman for years.

    I’m hoping the the bad coverage was typical breakdowns installing a new system with lots of “thinking.”

  5. Completely disagree with your assessment of Tank tonight. He did a good job of generating push, created a couple of pressures, and held up well against the run aside from one play where he had a shot at the tackle on Blue at the LOS but was late to locate the ball carrier, resulting in a big gain. I thought he outplayed his 2013 DL draft-mate Dial, who was knocked back a few times and in general didn’t offer a lot.

    Armstead was a handful 1-on-1, but as to be expected he is still raw and needs some work disengaging and locating the ball carrier. Purcell played surprisingly well, and Dorsey also made some good plays in the running game.

    The LBs, in particular the ILBs, were poor. Not just in coverage, but also got tied up against the run a lot too, either struggling to disengage blockers or playing the wrong gap and running into traffic. Skov had some good plays, but he in particular was too easily shut out of making the play on a few occasions, and will need to do a better job filling the gap consistently.

    The OLBs in general didn’t offer much pass rush. Lemonier was probably the pick of the OLBs today, made good plays, and could well find himself a role as a 1st and 2nd down OLB. Harold had some flashes and was probably the most dangerous of the OLBs in terms of pass rush, even though it was against the Texans backups of backups.

    Easy to pick on the DBs for giving up lots of completions, and they certainly weren’t good as a whole, but the coverage of the ILBs was probably the biggest weakness of the D for mine.

    On offense, I think you are overstating how far Kaep overthrew Torrey Smith. It was only a few yards out in front of him. But still, Smith had a few steps on the DBs and that is a play you can’t afford to miss too often. Points off the board.

    Hayne may run upright, but he did a good job of falling forward when hit to get that extra yardage. He was much better than I expected him to be in his first game. The big gainer was a huge hole to run through, but he did well making the safety miss in the open field. I knew he moved well for a pretty big guy when playing rugby league, but looks like he carries that over in pads too – some nifty footwork on that run as well as on his returns. If he keeps playing like that he will make a 53-man roster this year for somebody. Mike Davis also looked pretty good, though he played mostly against scrubs.

    Patton was anonymous despite playing almost the entire first half. Again. Very disappointing. Simpson looked a much better option. White didn’t impress much, but he at least has the QBs confidence as they did look to throw his way a few times. At this juncture I wouldn’t be surprised to see Simpson and White beat out Patton for a roster spot whatsoever.

    Gabbert is a lock to make the team as the 2nd QB. Thompson wasn’t helped by poor OL play, but Gabbert looked in command and confident. Possibly the best I’ve ever seen him look.

    The first string OL actually seemed to play pretty well, but I was particularly impressed when they moved Martin to OC, Thomas to RG and Brown to RT in the 2nd Qtr. The right side of the line with those three guys in held up really well in both runs and passes. Thomas/ Brown combined very well on a few plays. Brown looked a different (and much worse) player once he was paired with Silberman at RG.

    1. I think tonight will be good for Hayne. He showed his talent, and now he will bring it with confidence, making him even more dangerous. Purcell was on fire; sense of urgency.

      1. Agreed Brotha. Getting that first game out of the way and coming out of it with a lot of positives will be a huge confidence boost for him.

    2. Great assessment. I thought Tank had a nice pressure from the edge (while the OLB was dropping into coverage).

      Torry Smith seemed to slightly alter his route at the very end. CK’s pass might not have been that far overthrown.

      1. Thrown to an open spot, but delivered late. In stride on the numbers or 18″ in front :01.5 sooner would’ve worked, big play or TD. But you gotta miss long if you miss, so…….

    3. I agree linebacker play not good at all defensive line was solid but very deep no pass rush disappointed with moody pass coverage skills tonight he’s been better , with
      skov he just played terrible the worst shedding leverage, pass drops so poor but at least we know now not next month but to many guys out and that includes the other team too. the plays got off faster much faster gabber looks so much better than last year mr Purcell was so dominant and mr armstead was sad man and what kind of # is 69 that’s not a defensive line # I tried to remember a NFL d line with 69 and I could not come up with nobody, the draft class 2015 did not fair well this weekend but still early.

    4. I’m praying Armstead shoes more in next 3 games. Was not impressed with hustle or balance. I saw his lack of hustle in Regon tapes, but I did not see him fall down so much. Tank is fine, but certainly not where he should be at this point in career.

        1. Scooter, congrats on the Aussie who buried the American with an unprecedented 20 under par! Interesting story behind the man as well….

          1. Australia is starting to produce some pretty good golfers at the moment. Well done to Day!

            I still find golf the most frustrating of sports to play though, and almost unbearable to watch. :-P

      1. How do you figure that? I think you are forgetting the pass rush is primarily meant to come from the OLBs (3-4)/ DEs (4-man front). The outside pass rush was poor. As I said, Tank did create some push and had a couple of pressures. He was also quite good holding up against the run. He was by no means dominant, but the way you describe it you’d think he was ridden out of the play all day. That wasn’t what happened.

        He was no worse than Glenn Dorsey aside from that one play where he should have had the tackle on Blue at the LOS but failed to locate the ball, and I thought better than Dial who wasn’t that impressive.

        1. Dorsey and Dial played against starters. Carradine played against an undrafted rookie and the rookie outplayed him.

            1. True, and the Texans’ staring offensive line shut him down. Alfred Blue also picked up two big gains running at Tank.

              1. When you say “shut him down”, what do you mean? Do you mean he didn’t have any sacks/ impact the play, or that he was being soundly beaten by the OL? Because I don’t think the latter was the case. He did generate some push, and there were a few plays where he caused his opposite OL some trouble. But the ball was getting out quickly, so the push he was generating didn’t impact the play much.

                Of those two big gains by Blue, I thought only one of them was Tank’s fault. And on that play he actually did a very good job of standing his OL up and shedding. He just failed to locate the ball and make the play. Where were the LBs?

              2. No, he didn’t. Neither did any of the pass rushers. But part of that has to take into consideration the ball was getting out quickly, largely because the coverage was giving pretty easy passes up.

              3. Armstead hit Savage. The only time Carradine hit Mallett resulted in a roughing the passer penalty.

              4. True, but he created pressure on the play even if it was roughing the passer, and he did the same either play before or the play after. He also forced one of the QBs (I believe Mallett) out of the pocket on another pass rush, but the OG ended up doing enough to slide him past the QB as the QB stepped to his right.

              5. I actually thought he did a better job from RDE than RDT as a pass rusher, like on those back to back plays in which one was called for roughing the passer. Or am I just imagining that he was playing RDE in the 4-man front on those plays? Looked like he was turning the corner a bit, so I just assumed it was from RDE. He might still be better off rushing from wider.

              6. He played four technique in the base defense with the second-string unit and rushed the left tackle. Maybe the Niners shouldn’t have made him bulk up.

              7. Ah, right, I was misremembering they were in base on that play.

                Still, I thought he looked more comfortable rushing the passer from the edge on those plays than closer in. I know they have given him some reps at DE in 4-man fronts in TC. I wonder if he’d be best off playing RDE in nickel?

    5. Excellent breakdown Scooter.

      I agree with you on Tank especially. I saw him get a consistent push and hold up pretty well against the run. The big gain by Blue on the second drive looked like Carridine’s responsibility on first glance but I blame Skov more after rewatching it. Tank kept his position and was being held as he moved toward Blue, but Skov did a poor job of filling and was pushed outside which opened up the hole.

      Moodys game wasn’t as bad as I thought either. No way I blame him for not being able to pick up Shorts in the zone. That is a complete mismatch and Houston took advantage of it. He made some good tackles in the run game especially down around the goal line.

      The Aussie had himself a game with that run and KO return. He is a quick study and tremendous athlete. I still don’t see him making the roster unless it’s as a ST’s guy on both returns and coverage units though. He’s just too far down the roster as a RB. It’ll be interesting to see if they give him a serious chance on the coverage units.

      Okoye had a nice showing as well. He had his guy on roller skates a couple of times and on one, set Harold up for an easy sack that Harold flat out missed.

      Oline remains a concern and probably will throughout the year.

      Nobody makes the team based on one preseason game, but some of these guys really showed well and gave themselves an opportunity to continue trying to make an impression strong enough to make the final 53.

      1. Thanks rocket, and same with this analysis.

        On that play that Blue ran past Tank’s outside shoulder, I absolutely agree with you that Skov is as much of not more at fault. That was one of the examples of Skov not doing a good job avoiding trash to fill the gap. But Tank had a shot on the play after he disengaged from the OL if he’d been faster to locate the ball.

        I also agree with your assessment of Moody. He wasn’t as bad as is being made out. Not to say he was good, he wasn’t, just not as terrible as has been made out. Of the two starting ILBs, I thought Moody was better than Skov. The play most people remember/ use as an example of his poor play is that pass to Shorts. A guy like Shorts should be winning that matchup every time – too quick, too fast.

        1. The only concern about Moody is his ability to cover RB’s, TE’s and the occasional slot WR. Things Bowman and Willis did for years and did it very well.
          Now no one should be expecting the same type of performance. But he will get picked on big time if he can’t show an ability to do it.

      2. Rocket- in your third paragraph(on Hayne) you mention that he is too far down the depth chart to have much of a chance to make the roster. Also unlike last season they have enough good cover and receiver guys for the special teams unit’s. This makes me wonder why the team gave him so much playing time. This does not make sense if they hoped to keep him for the practice squad. In fact it only makes sense if they want to see if he can be contribute in the RB position this season early on. They might be thinking about a trade in that position group and want to see if Hayne’s is ready to fill one of the active spots if they do so. Perhap’s they had some good offer’s for Hunter already and want to see if they can pull the trigger on that trade.

        1. Willtalk,

          Good points. I think he got a lot of playing time because they wanted to see how he matched up with the guys he’s fighting with for a job on the roster or PS. You could be right in that may look to trade somebody if he plays well enough to win a job.

          I just don’t see how he makes much of an impact other than ST’s this season, as Hyde, Bush and Davis are pretty much locks, and Hunter is being rested conceivably to be ready for the regular season. Hayne pushing for a spot would be a nice problem to have though. Maybe the Cowboys will give us a pick for Hunter.

  6. plus apparently Simpson seems to be the leader in the No. 3-receiveer competition. Someone’s apparently too proud to proofread

  7. All and all not a bad performance considering all the turmoil this team has been though this pass off season . No major injuries reported thus far. Team looked organized and seemed that most players new their assignments. I think they are going to be okay going into the season.

    1. They seemed to need a wake up call; intensity wasn’t there initially. The Goal Line Stand was where they began to wake up.
      Houston’s first two drives were humiliating.
      Also, CK’s 3rd down play: 4 guys go out against m2m and NO ONE can get a step?
      No One?

    1. I was impressed how Hayne shifted the ball quickly from arm to arm to protect the ball. He had quick nifty moves that made tacklers miss. Looks like he has mastered the stiff arm, too.

  8. Well, Hayne is on his way to make my prediction come true about which new player is going to make the biggest impact!

  9. Watched the Hayne run a few times more. Miller’s blocking was a work of art. He sealed the first defender, then ran the 2nd defender clear into Oklahoma.

  10. Sigh, so CK overthrew TS by ten yards did he? On what planet? The one where you multiply actual distances by 4 or 5, before you give them?

    The ball was overthrown, no question, but not by ten yards, not by five yards, maybe three yards, but closer to two yards. Why does Grant persist in distorting the facts? It’s to the point where it’s systemic with this guy.

    BTW, Straight Out of Compton is really, really good. Go see it.

    1. Optimist- I suppose Grant forgot that unlike the practices we all got to see this game so his prevarications won’t work. I certainly hope it was that he forgot. He couldn’t be that disrespectful of our intelligence to think we wouldn’t notice. Or could he?

        1. Grant,

          I never said that CK didn’t overthrow TS on the play in question, nor have I said that CK is clicking on his deep passes in TC.

          What I’m pointing out, is that you consistently misrepresent facts to bolster your position.

          Why can’t you just leave it at CK overthrew TS? Why misrepresent and say ten yards? Stop, it makes you look foolish.

              1. Being inexact on it’s own isn’t a problem, but so often they fit a pattern of selective bias used as a writing tool.

                The fact you thought that the landing point of the ball indicated how far it was over thrown, and then thought the ball went thirty feet over Smith’s head does indicate some kind of perceptual problem. If you’re looking at the CBS replay, and can’t do a frame by frame analysis, then there is no way you can claim the ball was thirty feet over Smith’s head when it passed him.

                The fact is that a good completion would have been a touchdown, and a poor completion would have been a monster gain are both correct conclusions.

                What it seems like is that you’re building an “I told you so” basis for claiming honors if Kaepernick fails. The second benefit to that strategy is that it’s a win or no one remembers tactic that some participants in this forum use.

                Maybe it was just a case of Kaepernick getting a little too excited about his first long pass against live opposition. It’s also interesting that you’ve never mentioned that Smith first looked over his right shoulder, and was trying to find the ball over his left shoulder when it went past him. That might have prevented him from being a little closer to the ball.

              2. This is so silly. You’re picking on me because some of my estimates have been off by a few yards. That’s not selective bias. It’s interesting that Kaepernick has thrown 15 uncatchable deep passes during team work the past two weeks. You can ignore that stat if you want.

              3. Grant- I am not disputing that Kaeps seems to be having a problem with his long passes early this season. Nothing wrong with speculation as to why either. The thing is that you have a history of either misrepresenting plays where Kaep is concerned. I remember one particular instant where you reported that he was way off target and over threw a receiver by a considerable amount when in fact it was a sideline throw away to avoid a sack. It is examples like this that put your reports into question. Now no one is right all the time, we all can make mistakes,also each of us might have a different take or perspective on the same event. But as has been pointed out, your credibility in this matter is not based on one or two instances, rather a pattern that goes way back.

          1. If use Grants count and you count Saturday night’s game, he’s thrown 15 that were impossible to catch, but no one has reported how many were completed.

  11. Armstead and Harold had the same pluses and minuses in the game as they they did in college.

    Armstead got good leverage on the O-lineman, holding point, sometimes pushing his man back into the pocket with great power. Yet he sometimes failed to quickly disengage blocks and locate the ball to complete the tackle. Just like at Oregon the running back ran right bye him.

    Overall I’m happy with his development. He held point. He didn’t get very good 2nd level pursuit.

    Harold show really nice speed and agility. He has some good pressures and was a hair away from two sacks. Moves great in space. Took on some ILB coverage responsibilities. No easing him into the pros my limiting his role to edge rusher.
    But at times he was ran totally out of the play by the OT on runs to his side. I’ve never seen Aldon, Brooks, Haralson ever get shoved totally away from the run like that.

    Overall I’m happy with Harold’s development too. Plays with great energy. Makes Lemonier seem like a turtle. The big question is his role. He will either have to add bulk, or Mangini will need to design a specific role for him. A “move” or “chase” OLB with some ILB utility.

    Tartt’s speed vs runs is impressive. He doesn’t run out of control. Its just natural closing speed. One moment his in the 2nd level, the next he’s 4 yards behind the line of scrimmage. Like with Harold, Mangini seems to be tinkering with a specific role for him.

  12. I thought lemonair had decent penetration. He batted down a pass while he was in the qbs face. Purcell had a great game . Tart made some good plays. I would have liked to see Kap attempt a few 20-40 yard passes to TS before launching the 60 yarder. they need to understand each others range . The O line gave kap plenty of time on the deep ball to TS so that was encouraging. Overall I think there were good things to build on.

  13. Purcell is winning me over. Be great if they could move him to end. His motor reminded me of another guy who just hung them up.
    I know it’s pre-season but a motor like that is useful vs any level of competition.
    My other surprise was Haynes. He’s switching that ball like a rugby player does, he’s got speed, vision, cuts, and pretty solid stiff arm.
    A little love for the tight ends. Except McDonald. They showed good hands and blocking.
    Those are pretty much the only positives I got out of the scrimmage.
    I’m hoping to see more dominance from Purcell and running wild from Haynes

  14. At this stage in the new coach-scheme-rebuild process, it is too soon to drill down on field performance. Other than the expected Kaepernick standard yips, I found the teams’ appearance and pace that of a well coached team-details matter. For example, the offense repeatedly got to the line in crisp fashion and I had no concerns about foolish timeouts or delay of game penalties. The field play will improve as long as the coaches stay the course. I believe this coaching staff will realize its top-end potential because of Tomsula not in spite of him (think of defensive line play since his arrival). Could it be I am drinking the Kool-aide too fast too often? As an aside, the team might consider a two QB approach and bring in Gabbert as the closer to save/keep it close/win the game in the 4th quarter. Mental toughness in the 4th Q seemed to be lacking at the QB position in 2014. Thank You.

    1. Fun to see all the folks that were certain he was destined to be a practice squad player changing their tune this morning.

          1. I just figured since you handed out your cookie award to another gentlemen, you deserved to be recognized as well for your pat on the back achievement….

            1. Quality execution as usual. Course it probably would have made more sense to actually place that under a post where I was actually boasting about it like here:
              Matt Maiocco ✔ @MaioccoCSN
              Jim Tomsula on Jarryd Hayne: “It seems like everybody is surprised. I’m not.”

              Coffee’s for Closers® August 16, 2015 at 9:16 am
              That’s funny cause I wasn’t either.

              Instead of where I was simply pointing out that you’re just a Johnny come lately.

              1. Handing out a cookie award for aggrandizing while being guilty of the same thing would only make sense in your mind….

            2. Has nothing to do with logic or making sense. You’re calling me a hypocrite because I teased someone for something that I went ahead and did myself. Your girl scout poke was completely appropriate and deserving, if you’d put it in the right place. The comment you used it under wasn’t me boasting or patting myself on the back but simply me calling out the people that have reserved direction so suddenly.

            3. I was accused of dissing Pinion, but just pointed out that I really liked Pinion from the moment he was drafted.
              Dont worry, I can take the ribbing, it is a lot better than expletive filled threats.

              1. Whether or not you can take the ribbing is not the issue, it’s where the ribbing is placed evidently….

  15. Still think he will be cut so other players like Purcell and White can be protected, then he will be elevated from the PS to play during the season. However, if Hunter has a setback with his knee, I think he will make the 53.

    1. I’m guessing that he may stay there and Lynch will take the LOLB spot when healthy. Lemonade and Harold back-ups and Rush to the PS.

  16. The only thing we learned last night is that TC makes “fool’s gold” type hero’s that football starved fans quickly attached to.
    DeAndrew White and Dylan Thompson seem to be this years entrées – that follow in the footsteps of previous TC stars Nate Davis, Clayton Thomas (or is it Thomas Clayton?) P.J. Daniels, Nate “Napalm” Palmer (who I was enamored with) and perhaps other TC stars that have since faded into obscurity.

    Nice to see Hayne have a good game especially when considering that he has never had pro football experience up until this year. But I will temper my enthusiasm regarding Hayne because of that very important factor.

    NBow did not play last night (wise decision) and he is by far our best defensive player, so any weakness of filling and reading gaps by last night’s LB’s will vastly improve when Bow returns to the starting lineup.

    Our O-line will improve and become a cohesive unit as the season progresses. Hopefully by the 3rd game of the season.

    Happy for Gabbert. I really liked him in college but he fell into a bad situation in Jacksonville that stripped him of his confidence. Becoming a backup QB may have saved his career and eventually give him a second chance at another Starting role.
    After last night’s performance I feel good about him beginning to turn the corner.

    With CK, he will do whatever it takes to try to win games. He will no doubt continue to incorporate what he learned at EXOS, but if the O-line breaks down Kap may resort to what he feels more comfortable with; running. But I don’t view that as a total loss because he is the best running QB in the league.

    There’s a lot that will shake down between now the and first regular season game and by the 4th preseason game we will have a much better glimpse of what to expect in 2015.

    1. It is still a bit early to label Thompson and White as “fools gold”. All players have sliding scale performances that might vary from day to day. No one is as good or as bad as they might look on any given day. The circumstances that both those players saw in this first preseason game allow for mitigating reasons for a less than stellar performance. The reason they had Gabbert play with the first team was precisely for that reason. As Tomsula mentioned Thompson had little support and his lack of production would carry over to the TE and Receivers who played at the same time. Besides it was just one game.

  17. Anyone know the over / under on the number of defensive linemen that will play significant snaps for other teams? I’m saying three.

        1. But it does matter, when you have a reporter that constantly distorts facts to support his positions.

          1. Missing an estimate by four yards isn’t distorting facts. The fact is the pass was overthrown and had no chance to be caught. Everyone saw that. Quibbling over the exact yardage is beside the point, especially when no one made an attempt last night to say what the exact yardage was.

            1. When the first comment that it didn’t look like the ball was over thrown “about ten yards” was posted, you could have simply replied that Kaepernick’s new receiver was out of reach of the ball on Kaepernick’s first long pass of preseason against live action.

              You didn’t need to argue with anyone, or point out that the ball was thirty feet over Smith’s head, and also point out that it was the “fifteenth impossible to catch” long ball Kaepernick had thrown in the past two weeks.

              1. You’re just arguing semantics that have nothing to do with the issue. In fact, you’re saying there is no issue even though you haven’t seen a single practice.

            2. “Quibbling over the exact yardage is beside the point, especially when no one made an attempt last night to say what the exact yardage was.”

              That’s ironic. No one cared about the exact yardage but you. The fact that your correction was flawed because you used where the ball landed is what got me interested.

              1. You two are going back and forth endlessly. Solving nothing, I’ll share my live moment impressions from the narrow TV view:
                > Kaep drops back, waits, and launches a Moon Shot, impressive in it’s steep ballistic trajectory, that got my attention
                > the camera scrolls upfield and TS comes into view, he looks open behind the defenders!
                > ball overthrown, out of reach
                > Oh well
                We can disect lots from replays, but bottom line:
                “Shot! Too long!”
                Do we get a Gotchya on Grant for an incorrect estimate. Sure.
                In the end, it was long, and better long than short.

    1. Grant, did it seem like Arik Armstead was exactly the same player he was at Oregon?

      He got good leverage, pushing the O-lineman back with power. Yet he fails to quickly disengage and locate the ball to complete the tackle. Just like at Oregon the running back ran right past him.

      I shouldn’t have been surprised he excelled at 1-on-1 drills pushing the O-lineman back. He’ll spend alot of games on the inactive list if he doesn’t improve his college weaknesses.

      1. I agree with all of this. He might actually be a better sub-package pass-rusher than a base-down run-stuffer early in his career, which would be ironic.

    2. Bad math unless you want the receiver to lay down on the ground. Where the ball was in relation to Smith’s solders is how far it was over thrown — not where it hit the ground.

      1. Do the math however you like — the pass wasn’t catchable and that’s all that matters. It’s the quarterback’s job to give the receiver a chance to catch the ball.

        1. You make your points using faulty information to draw conclusions and paint a picture of what’s taking place. No one who actually watches a game needs anyone to tell them when a pass is overthrown, and that wasn’t your intent when you originally reported the pass as overthrown by ten yards.

            1. Some readers tend to think that your “abouts” are frequently on the higher end of negativity when it suits the case that you’re building. I wonder how many writers have kept a record of impossible to catch for Kaepernick so far this year?

              1. How much the pass was overthrown by means nothing. A pass either is catchable or it’s not. Uncatchable is not good.

              2. It’s because you have a track record of being judgmental with selective and biased information. At this point I’m not sure that you are aware of that tendency. It’s that “color” that you add to an observation of something like an incomplete pass.

              3. I have no judgement of Kaepernick’s troubles with the deep ball this offseason. I’m just reporting it. Geep Chryst spoke about it as well. I expect CK will work out his issues before the regular season.

      2. If Smith’s arms are 33″ then extend them at shoulder height. Measure from that point in the plane created by Smith’s arms to the point where the ball crossed that plane and you’ve got the distance the ball was over thrown. That would be quite a bit less than five yards. More like five feet.

        The play where Kaepernick waited so long to get rid of the ball that he invited the refs to call him out of bounds bothered me more. It’s almost seems that he would rather take a loss than add an incomplete pass to his stats.

    3. I did like the way TS ran past those DBs like they were standing still. And I like the way they announced to the league, first pre-season game, first series this will be a core of their playbook. They are going to connect on this more than a few times this season, it should keep the Lamonicas happy. I’m not a Lamonica and it made me happy.

        1. He was definitely as advertised on that play. When was the last time we saw a Niners receiver cover that much ground that quickly?

    4. Grant,

      You need to look at the ball’s location relative to the receiver when it’s at the height it would be caught, not when it hits the ground. Also, you need to count something for the reach of the receiver. You do if you’re interested in accurately reporting how far the ball was from being caught, anyway. Maybe that’s not your objective. CK overthrew TS by three yards, max.

      1. Yes, it is definitely relative to the catch point, not the ground. If the ball had landed at Smith’s feet, it would have been underthrown.

        But, end of the day, it was overthrown and Smith was open.

        1. Scooter,

          You’re absolutely right, the pass wasn’t catchable. It also sounds like CK is having some trouble with hitting the deep ball in TC, as well. This isn’t in dispute.

          The problem I have is that Grant is exaggerating facts to bolster his point of view, to make the story more sensational, because he’s just cavalier about his job, or some other reason. I don’t really care, but I do wish he would be more careful. It would be a lot easier to take his reports on face value, because his training camp reports would be interesting, if they could be trusted. And I’m sure much of his reporting is accurate, but enough is substantially different from what other reporters are writing, or from what direct, visual evidence shows so that his writing needs to be vetted.

          The truth is, that pass wasn’t horrible. It wasn’t good, obviously, but it wasn’t horrible. Since Grant likes golf analogies, it was on the high side of the hole, or, as Bro Tuna noted above, long is the preferred miss on a deep ball.

          My hope is that CK is just getting used to throwing the ball with more touch and will improve by the end of TC or early in the season. Something Grant cleverly and subtly alluded to in one of his responses.

      2. The ball was 10 yards above Smith’s head, then it landed six yards in front of him. He gave up on it before it hit the ground. It’s irrelevant how close the ball might have come to his outstretched arms which weren’t outstretched. It was a terrible pass.

            1. Grant,

              Get yourself a 30 feet or longer tape measure and take a look at what 10 yards looks like (30 feet).

              Then look at the play again and see if you really think the ball was ten yards (thirty feet) over TS’s head. You do realize that ten yards (thirty feet) is the height of a three story building, right?

              Are you really saying the ball was that high over TS’s head?

              Come on, man, you cannot be serious. The ball was less than ten feet above TS’s head when it was directly above him.

              BTW, TS didn’t look like he gave up on the pass early.

              1. It doesn’t matter how uncatchable an uncatchable pass is. Only Smithers sweat those details.

              2. Grant,

                What kind of statement is that? “Only Smithers sweat those details”, Wow.

                You were the one who brought up “those details”, not anyone else. Now that you’re just being called on your ten yards, then your six yards and finally, the coup de gras, 10 yards over TS’s head ( the height of a three story building), you’re trying to say those details are for “Smithers”.

                That’s fractured logic. THEY ARE YOUR “DETAILS”! You should care about getting your details right, Grant, it’s your job. If you’re not willing to get them right, then they have no place in your writing.

                It’s weird that you can’t see the problem with your misrepresenting facts, but one of your MO’s has been to double down on your opinion, regardless of how untenable a position you’ve taken and you’re doing it again.

              3. The ball landed 6 yards in front of Smith. That’s all I was trying to say. My initial estimate was four yards off. Sue me. Now you’re quibbling about the definition of “overthrow.” Whatever suits your argument, I guess. The pass still was not catchable and that’s the only thing that matters.

            2. >>Only Smithers sweat those details.

              Kicking it old school, I see Grant. Or are you on to a more current take – (Torrey) Smithers?

  18. Another issue with Kap’s deep pass was he threw it a couple beats too late. He hitched twice unnecessarily. He needs to work on throwing those passes in rhythm.

          1. Yeah, one of the reasons for the defensive performance could easily be spending too much time thinking rather than reacting at this early juncture.

            Also, did it seem to anyone else that Reid and Bethea were extremely timid until the goal line stand? Bethea barely attempted to tackle Shorts, and Reid was basically patting Blue on the back as he ran side by side with him rather than pushing him out.

      1. Wasn’t he moving to his right. Maybe he was getting his feet under him which is thinking too much. Preseason game one, in a token appearance, is probably the best place to create a teaching moment.

          1. It’s nice having the recording. I took looked at the pass play again, and he didn’t move to the right. He did hitch twice which probably was cross wires in his head from the off season training, and you did over estimated the amount the pass was over thrown — twice.

            But keeping a log of your observations in training camp and preseason games titled “Kaepernick’s Overthrown Passes” serves only your own objectives.

              1. He had no chance to catch it, but where the ball landed does not determine how far the ball is overthrown. That’s high school math for a college prep student.

              2. The ball was easily 10 yards above Smith’s head by the time it reached him. He gave up on the pass before it hit the ground. It was a terrible pass. If Kaepernick had thrown merely a bad pass, it would have been a 50-yard gain. A decent pass and it would have been a touchdown.

              3. C’mon, it was at least in the same vicinity. You make it sound like it was in another time zone. Another way to say it that he threw it to where he hoped Torrey to be but also to where the defense could not intercept it.
                To put it succinctly, better long than short.

              4. If it was in the same vicinity, Smith could have made a play on it. If it was underthrown, Smith still could have made a 50-yard catch. He’s an excellent receiver — he just needs a chance to make a play.

              5. If it was a game that counts, he might have laid out for it, but it was a preseason game, and his health is of higher priority to me.

              6. I don’t think the pass was close enough to lay out for it, especially in preseason. I also don’t know what effect Smith’s looking right before he looked left had on his speed.

    1. CK has a huge arm. Most late throws are under thrown. It almost seems like the pass was both late and early. He could have waited a tick and hit Torrey in stride.

      1. I see what you mean. I just watched it again, and it looked like Kaepernick waited too long and then tried to overcompensate by throwing harder than he needed to.

        1. His pass to Boldin was short and accurate, but without any hitches and he was on the move. Something, as you say, must have delayed his decision to throw to Smith.

        2. I thought he could have put it on TS chest just as he broke between the Safeties, before he turned it up to go after the long ball. The delay could have been to make sure Smith cleared any underneath coverage, but I don’t recall the LBs being that deep.
          (PS: We ARE mincing this to death.)

            1. Yup, there was always a lot left over Granma’s Mince Pie on Thanksgiving. But it beat the Christmas Fruit Cake she worked so hard on. We used to call them Doorstops behind her back. My Dad would take ours to his office, and every time someone had a birthday there they’d get it as a gift.Then it would get passed on to whoever had the next birthday; yeah, the same one all year, and it never showed any signs of decomposition! When my Dad retired, everyone in the office bought him a Fruit Cake. He left one in each drawer of his desk and file cabinet, and still came home with over a dozen.

              1. HT
                He was a man who lived up to his own standards, yet lived his life gracefully and with humor. Hella musician too.
                By the way, good advice to Grant about enjoying this moment in his life.

              2. BT, as a grandfather you can believe that it was a heartfelt observation. I just told your Dad’s story to my wife. She liked Fruit Cake when she was a kid, so now, thanks to you, my marriage is in shambles.

            1. Kaep is a natural runner, not a natural thrower. He’s always going to be thinking the throws, as opposed to just throwing the ball. It gets worse when there’s pressure, or when the team is behind, or when he has to make a play. No one will admit it but Kaep has yet to learn to trust himself in those situations. This is who he is until he spends at least another year remaking himself and focusing on being a complete QB, not one that can run.

              1. Fan77 often has good points when he tones down his penchant for hyperbole.

                Overthinking is an issue for Kap and has been a prominent issue since that horrible first Seattle game in 2013. Given that he has added more things to process (the revised mechanics) and is working with new receivers, I suspect we will continue to see him overthinking many throws until, as Fan points out, he starts to trust himself.

              2. I hope he is not like Greg Cosell who pontificates that Kaep will never be a good QB until he learns to stay in the pocket to deliver passes. JH fell for that, and Kaep was sacked 52 times last year.
                Forcing Kaep to be only a pocket passer is like putting an Abrams tank in a pit. Coach Tomsula is smart, and he will allow Kaep to utilize his mobility to avoid sacks while putting the ball in the hands of his playmakers, hopefully on explosion plays to score TDs.

              3. I’m actually a moderate. Not an extremist. So long as the Fanatic doesn’t start pushing my buttons. I was sarcastic most of the time last year…

        3. All y’all bashing Grant for his editorializing need to just chill. So what, he exaggerates to make a point. What self-respecting man doesn’t do that once in a while? How big was that fish you caught?

          And for those of you defending Kaep, what do you think he would say about his 15 deep-ball misses? Think he’s happy?

          1. I hope he practices to get more touch on the ball, but also make it more catchable. Throw it so the WR can run under it. Not so much loft that the DBs can react to the ball, but lay it softly in his hands in stride. He will sync up with practice and reps. Logan should work on arc.

        1. Au contraire. Kaeps’ was a 65? yard bomb. Hoyers’ was a touch pass over the LB ( Moody), and in front of the safeties and Bethea took a bad angle.

          1. Au contraire right back at you.

            Kaepernick had the opportunity to make the shorter throw but waited for the longer throw. That might be one of those layup opportunities missed.

            1. Riposte. I was referring to those two passes actually thrown, not one that was thrown and one that should have been thrown.

      2. Yeah it’s pretty amazing he can throw it that late and still over shoot one of the fastest WR’s in the league. That thing was 65 yards in the air.

        As to how much it was overthrown, honestly who cares? Whether it was two yards or twenty, it goes down as an incompletion and that’s all that matters. The deeper the pass, the lower the percentage of completing it, and Kap is still figuring out his timing with Smith. I saw Kap throw a frozen rope about 50 yards on a line for a TD to VD against Tampa two years ago, so I’m guessing he’ll get better the more he works with Smith.

        1. Exactly. I do think it’s troubling CK has thrown so many uncatchable deep passes the past couple of weeks. He needs to at least give the receiver a chance.

          1. Grant- I suspect it has something to do with his changing mechanics. Add that to working with a new receiver and that is what you get. He really needed to get more reps with Smith in training camp. Hopefully they can get some of it done during preseason, but they need to let Kaep play more than a few snaps.

            1. I’ve never liked having QBs at or below Kaepernick’s level being treated like Rogers, Brady, Gore or Payton during preseason.

        2. This commentary is for all passes over 20 yards:

          “Of those passes Brady was just 1-15 on balls thrown 31 yards or more.

          Of Stafford’s 63 attempts he completed just 22 passes.

          Rodgers is far more efficient than most 52.6% among all his deep throws, but that is still well off his 70.9% mark for balls thrown 20 yards or less.

          Flacco attempted 78 passes longer than 21 yards, which was 14% of all of his attempts. Unfortunately it didn’t pan out too well, as he managed to complete just 23% (18 total) of those passes

          Cam Newton: Of those 80 attempts he connected just 29 times (and he was just 7 of 25 beyond 30 yards), or 36%.

          Brees also did most of his damage in the 21-30 yard range, where he was 21-40.”


          And we are arguing ad nauseam that Kaep wasn’t 100% on a 65 yarder? Let’s give it a fn’ break already.

    2. Grant!
      Invoking the “Smither” term, wow!
      Kind of reminds me of the Sandlot movie when “Ham” told his rival “you play ball like a girl” CLASSIC! (although now not PC).

    3. Grant,

      Did you watch the isolated replay on TS? He didn’t come open until the point at which he was overthrown. That might explain why CK took two crow hops, he was waiting for TS to come open. BTW, I believe it’s not uncommon for QB’s to use crow hops as a timing mechanism.

      Your point about CK probably thinking to much at this point in TC is a good and interesting one. You don’t need to look for made up evidence for this point to be valid and interesting, so why do it?

      1. He’s got to trust that Smith will outrun the safety and throw the pass a couple beats earlier. That’s called anticipation.

        “I thought that, again, the throw to [WR] Jerome Simpson, if you saw that on the left sideline, I don’t know if we’ve seen that from Kap consistently. And again, there’s so much to it than just, ‘Hey, let’s take a shot downtown.’…First off, he anticipated it, so if you had the clicker on, you’d see that he took the throw in rhythm.” — Geep Chryst

        1. Grant,

          So I’m not termed a Kapologist, I get that CK is struggling with deep balls this off season. That’s not being debated, what’s being debated is your method of reporting. Nice try at changing the subject.

          How long is a beat? It better be pretty short, because TS didn’t come open more than a second before the ball passed him and probably less.

          BTW, why did the ball need to be thrown earlier? TS was open when the ball was overthrown. Had it been on target, the play probably would’ve gone for a TD. So why do you say he threw the ball late? TS was wide open when the ball arrived.

          Your quote from Chryst is interesting, but it’s unclear if he’s making a direct comparison between CK’s and Gabbert’s deep balls in the game, or CK’s deep throwing in general and Gabbert’s deep ball in the game. It sounded like the latter.

          Wouldn’t it be ironic if Gabbert did to CK, what CK did to Alex Smith?

        2. Kap seems to lack the anticipation factor as you refer to. While QB’s like Brady, Rodgers, P.Manning, and Brees take anywhere between 1.5 – 2 seconds to anticipate their WR’ location CK seems to need 2.5 + to locate his WR.

          Greg Cosell made a point on KNBR today that CK had Boldin open for a sure completion but instead pulled back and ran towards the right sideline.
          Kap’ inability to anticipate faster and throw will not be helped by the EXOS workouts because this area of the game relies on the mental aspect rather then the physical and mechanical part of it.
          But the promising part is that Kap is willing and open to apply himself to his craft.
          I still have high hopes for CK7.

            1. Grant,
              Although preseason scores don’t mean anything in standings, I have to believe that Kap and Chryst will dissect this particular play on film and determine that CK can’t leave opportune plays on the field by waiting a second too long to confirm his WR’s are open.

              Kap might be thinking that he could wait “confirm” that his WR is open and compensate with his arm strength. The problem with this is that the extra second allows for the defense to better position themselves to make a play.

              I hope that the missed opportunity to throw to Boldin rather then running out of bounds serves as a learning tool.

              1. Is Torrey Smith the kind of guy who will become impatient if he is not putting 6’s on the board?

              2. P.T.,

                Torrey Smith is supposed to be smart, mature and a great teammate, so, while he might get frustrated if the ball isn’t getting to him, he’s probably about as well equipped as any player to keep it together.

                AES and Grant,

                It was troubling to see CK miss AB. It looked like he dropped his eyes to find the pressure (that wasn’t that close) and turned his body to run so he couldn’t throw the ball to AB, once he came open. Not good to see.

                It could be a case of old, bad habits dying hard or it might just be a relatively isolated backslide. I’m hoping for the latter, or I’ll probably be changing my name, again.

              3. Prime & AKA,
                Kap will likely have the occasional lapses in which hebackslides to a bad habit, but I don’t believe that he spent a good part of the off-season improving his craft at EXOS without there being a marked improvement in his game.

                Kap may miss on some of his deep passes but he will also hit on some. He may also run out of the pocket because he anticipates pressure that isn’t there, but he will improve in that aspect as well.

                What worries me most is he penchant for staring down his WR’s. Until he can conquer this vital area of his game he will never put together a string of good – great games where he has consistency.

                I’m hoping for the best for CK7 because much of our teams success is in his hands.
                Let’s see if the lights go on for Kap this year.

  19. Watching the Eagles reminds me of what a masterful job Fangio did against them last season. Their 21 points came from defense and special teams. Fang shut them out cold.

    In practices Fangio has two offenses play against the starting defense. When offense 1 completed a play, offense 2 immediately lined up for the next play. The main focus of the defense was putting players in proper pre-snap position.

    This is not a Mangini bash. Just a little reminder of the value of straightforward, disciplined defense. Get in the right spot, know your assignments, maintain gap integrity, good tackling.

  20. Considering it was the first preseason game under a new defensive scheme I didn’t expect much… However, our OLBs has me concerned (damn you Aldon!!). I would hope Lemonier is just filling in until Lynch returns. Lemonier has never impressed and gets swallowed up by tackles far too often. Brooks was also a non-factor although I think he’ll turn it up when the regular season starts. Hopefully Dockett and Bowman get some playing time against the Cowboys… Their leadership and attitude is needed.

  21. Grading Kaepernick:

    Cam Inman didn’t bother.

    Matt Burrows didn’t bother.

    Matt Maiocco one completion, one intentional throw away, and one overthrown long pass to Smith. Period.

    Grant Cohn assigned a grade, and labeled one pass with overtones of doom.

          1. He didn’t give up on the route, he gave up on trying to catch the pass. He didn’t stretch for the ball because it was so far overthrown. Watch the replay again. I didn’t have the benefit of replay last night.

            1. That would only make me lament your math education even more. On to the next exaggeration for effect. By the way, my “giving up on the route” was exactly the same kind of exaggeration to make a point that you have engaged in for a lot of your time here at Inside the 49ers. Then there is the good old reliable cherry picking of data in a pinch.

              1. You just misread what I wrote. I didn’t exaggerate, I overestimated by a couple of yards which apparently makes me unethical, unreliable and stupid. I think you’re overreacting. Give UCLA a break.

              2. Grant

                A little biotech can talk smack about UCLA, but that’s just because he never had the pleasure of strolling Bruin Walk to campus from the hill on any spring day. Good lord, skirts and legs!!!

              3. Actually I have. It was during my high school campus visit in 1950. The girls were heart warming then, but I stayed here and want to Stanford — the girls, not so much in those days.

                “Powder Blue Forever!”

              4. Ahem. UCLA barbie dolls are good eye candy, But I fondly remember my youth on the UC Davis campus. There were coeds from around the world, and in the 100 degree heat, they had scant clothing. Ah, those were the days.

    1. With only one series, it was more of an incomplete grade on Kaep. Thompson , however, looked like he was his first game as a pro…..Oh wait… He WAS in his first game.

    2. I assigned a grade to the position group and pointed out a trend of Kaepernick throwing uncatchable deep passes this offseason.

  22. Grant, your rating of the defensive backs is accurate. Beyond poor pass coverage, it was frustrating to watch them wave as a runner went past them. Tackling is also part of the DB responsibility but they don’t seem to recognize that.

    1. It looked like the DBs were concentrating on being in the right position and have proper technique, but they lost sight of the ball.

    1. **Qualifier** Not an expert, but it has to do with which side of the gap and where your “spill” players responsibilities lay. It can get pretty complicated….

    2. Brodie,

      Run fits are where you want a defender to be in relation to his gap assignment. Usually you want the Dlineman or LB playing to the inside shoulder so they can’t get pushed outside and are in a good position to take on another blocker if need be.

      A great example of this occurred on Blues run on the second series last night where Skov didn’t position himself properly and was easily pushed outside leaving a big hole.

  23. Hayne has to make this team. He is only going to get better and his versatility is crucial. Was he on coverage units on kicks punts? I think he could be a matchup nightmare for lbs

    1. Andrew- That appears to be one of the GM’s flaws. He goes for BPA while other positions crave talent. You can do that when you have a solid roster, but with holes to fill you just can not afford to do that unless you are going to compensate by making the right trades.

  24. Barrows today:
    Tomsula said there were some individual lapses. But he noted that the 49ers didn’t game-plan for the Texans and were “vanilla” in their pass coverages. Houston, for example, used four wide receivers on its opening drives. “It’s not something we’ve spent a lot of time on,” he said. “Whereas if we were game planning we’d have spent time on that — the spacing and all that kind of stuff.”

    Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/sports/nfl/san-francisco-49ers/article31261901.html#storylink=cpy

    1. I felt like I was seeing confusion in the secondary which fits with what JimT said about the problems they were having.

      All a coach has to do to improve his chances of winning in preseason is a small amount of game planning, run a few defensive games, and bring his team into the game with fresh legs.

      A coach who wants to get the most out of training camp won’t waist time on game planning, will play simple defense, and keep right on conditioning his players for the regular season — not worrying about fresh legs for preseason games.

      1. This was his first game. He was going to play the second, third and fourth string. it would be impossible to install an intricate game plan that would be tailored to the players, since they would be rotated in. Starters got only one series. It was smart to make a vanilla defense and study the film to see their strengths, and weaknesses. Tomsula needs to assess players under game conditions, and preseason is the time to do it.

        1. That was my point sebnynah. Good coaches don’t tweak preseason games just to get a win. Jim T might tweak the third game just a bit. Maybe he will make a point of going into the game on fresh legs, but he will keep everything else on hold until the Vikings game.

  25. My biggest frustration with preseason games is the poor camera work. I’m amazed that some of you can spot so much relevant information.

      1. No. That doesn’t explain it. We have a calibrated Pioneer Kuro which shows all the detain available, and some you might want to skip. May Pioneer rest in peace.

        1. Maybe if Comcast offered slow motion on their DVRs it would help. Good replays, as we get most of the time in the regular season, are best.

            1. That’s your dad’s fault. If you lived in our house you would have a living room home theater that can do a lot of things, but no slow motion.

              1. Can I come live with you? I promise I won’t ever exaggerate, or cherry-pick anything. Even cherries.

              2. We would love to have you. These discussions would be a lot more productive.

                We recently had our oldest son with us three nights a week for about four years. It was a rare treat to get to know him from a vastly different prospective because he is 62 now.

                Enjoy your own rare opportunity at home now.

              3. Grant- It is a real I opener to rewatch plays. Surprising how different things sometimes look removed from game speed and preconceptions.

              4. Grant,

                I didn’t realize that you didn’t have access to a DVR. If you were going by memory, and not from replays, why not just say that right at the beginning of all of this? It would’ve made your position easier to understand. I just assumed you were looking at the same replays and coming up with your yardage estimates.

              1. My wife has a very high interest in Superbowl half time and the commercials. She never misses a minute of a Sharks game if she isn’t at the game. I spend Sharks game time making a fool of myself here.

        2. Htwaits, not sure what others do, but I watch it on NFL Game Pass, which allows me to replay each play to get a better idea of what is going on. Though the camera angles can make it pretty difficult at times.

          During the regular season the All-22 tape is pretty useful, but don’t have that for pre-season.

            1. Its about $200 – $250 AUD or something like that for the season. Given we only get 2-4 games televised each week its money well spent in my book to make sure I can watch every 49ers game (and any other teams/ games of interest).

              1. Scooter
                I’m curious about the level of fan interest in the NFL down in Oz. If you can, give me two approximate values, both pre-Hayne’s adventure and now. I don’t speak TV market shares, so whatever way of expressing it that makes sense. Perhaps as compared to Soccer (if you forgive the phrase). Thanks

              2. The level of fan interest (pre-Hayne) in the NFL was pretty low in Australia. I imagine it was about as high as fan interest in a sport such as rugby union in the US (without really knowing how much interest there is in the US for rugby), maybe a smidge above that as there are televised games on free to air TV each week (although at 4:00AM to 10:30AM on a Monday morning, so not many people watching). Nowhere near the level of interest there is in soccer in either Australia or the US.

                Post Hayne there is a little bit more interest, though not really in the NFL so much as in Hayne. Any news story that is NFL related in Australia is about Hayne. I think people that like rugby league, in particular Parramatta Eels fans (the club he played for), have a casual interest in hearing about how he goes, though the vast majority won’t watch the games.

              3. Thanks, Scooter. Interest in Rugby is very limited here. There are a very fewhigh school club teams. College Rugby has the highest profile, but even an NCAA championship match might only have 150-250 spectators.
                Then there are some community clubs of former college players. I think Rugby may be on a par of popularity with Lacrosse in the USA.

              4. Yeah, we don’t have any gridiron teams in school or university here that I am aware of. There are some local leagues around, mostly in the major capitals, including both juniors and seniors, but its not something you get fans to the game for. There are no professional or semi-professional leagues in Australia as far as I am aware.

                Its hard for gridiron to kick off here with established and popular football codes such as rugby union, rugby league, Australian Rules Football, and in the past two decades soccer, to contend with.

              5. Wow! That’s what it costs us for NFL Ticket. The Game Pass you’re describing is $99 I believe….

          1. I have NFL Replay during the season and it also does All-22. Long ago, before they moved the hash marks, I could watch line play and pass patterns from the end zone. It was a great view.

          2. NFL Replay has more than I can use. occasionally there is a game I missed, not involving the 49ers, that I can enjoy knowing the outcome in advance.

            I saw the first Raider game at Kezar, so if they get good again, I might watch a few of their games. During the 2014 season I watched all the 49er wins starting in 2010 for relaxation.

    1. I heard that. Not 1 single game in years has the telecast gone without fuzz outs and audio problems. And listening to the commentators is a death sentence to the ears. Every player is a pro bowl caliber player. Eeek!!!

    1. UGH. Kawakami. I try to not read him. A friend was talking about his last story, so I read it, and it was pure drek. Calling the owner a coward is just not journalism to me.Trying to tie JH parting with Aldon DUI was delusional.

      1. Those media folks down in the South Bay have a twisted meanness in them. My Engineer brother-in-law’s theory is that Silicon Valley’s cut-throat, sink-or-swim, survival of the fittest business ethos emboldens the Merc guys to be ruthless slashers. “Be #1, or die, losers!”
        So the movers and shakers inSilicon Valley lured the Niners down there and helped in a big way get their new stadium done, and then expected to,win the next three Super Bowls. So they weren’t just disappointed in last season, they were offended, insulted and scornful. The Merc’s staff sensed it, smelled blood in the water, and proceed accordingly. Much of the rest of Bay Area media pile on when they can.
        TK thinks he’s bigger than any of, all of the stories he covers. I sometimes wonder if the K really stands for Kardashian.
        Tim, if you’re reading this (he’s not), Yes, I would say all that to your face.

      2. Not sure which one you are referring to sebnynah. His last four or five items have been about the Raiders — all positive. He also had an interview with Ralph Barbieri last Friday. I haven’t read any of them, but I know he was on vacation before that.

        He has criticized Jed York a lot the past year. I can’t see what any of that has to do with a plot by the Silicon Valley powers to take over the NFL. Given the way that Goodell is performing, it may be possible.

        The point that I thought Kawakami was making is the obvious one — most of the time there is not much of value to be learned in preseason games.

        1. He can be reasonable, and informative. That interview with Ralph helped me understand the situation better, and I really like Ralph. I guess I partly blame TK for the reporting of leaks and rumors. It was like he was pouring gas on the fire.
          He is a columnist, so he can ask the penetrating question, by there is a pleasant way to do it. TK can be very annoying, at least to me.

            1. When the messenger drives the story and becomes part of the brouhaha, he should expect some heat. He used the leaker as a flame thrower.

              1. And Jed was not the leaker, he was target of the leaks. Jed did not want that stuff to get out because it would do him no good, and ticked off JH. Loose lips sink ships, and Jed should have kept his big mouth shut.

        2. Granted, Jed York deserves a lot of criticism. I hope I am not being an apologist for him. The best thing for Jed to do is just shut up, because I also think he is fanning the flames.

  26. I wonder if they will keep the present line up, or mix up the O line.
    I wonder which TE may be traded to Washington.
    Looks like Moody needs more training.

    1. That’s how I see the starting lineup going too.

      If Wilhoit’s muscle injury recovers in time, he can give Moody a run for his money.

      In games vs pass oriented teams, do you see Tartt replacing Moody in a kind of big nickle setup?

      1. I thought he was good, but Gabbert was getting the ball out so fast. He made all of the offensive linemen look good. I thought it was interesting that Gabbert threw his passes in rhythm and Kaepernick didn’t.

        1. I thought Thomas was doing a pretty good job in the run game too. Assuming he will only be better for his first game action in about 2 years, I think he could well force his way into the starting lineup come the start of the regular season.

        2. “He made all of the offensive linemen looked good.” Statements like that is what we should be saying about CK and as of yet it hasn’t been said due to the fact he doesn’t – yet.

        3. One pass to Boldin in rhythm, one pass with two hitches on a long pass and only Colin and possibly his QB coach will know why he hitched, and one pass where he wound up throwing the ball away. On that last pass do we know how many receivers were open in rhythm?

          That’s a tiny sample size of three passes for you to say that Kaepernick didn’t throw in rhythm. Do you have even a glimmer why some of us think you’re biased where Kaepernick is concerned?

          1. The pass to Boldin was a second late. Watch Boldin’s route. The pass should be on him when he makes his break. Kaepernick holds the ball and moves to the right to get a clearer throwing lane.

            1. I watched the Boldin play play again using my handy dandy DVR.

              What I saw was Boldin going five yards down field and turning to face the Colin and planting. The ball was delivered before the defender could get to Boldin, but in time for him to slip the hit and gain enough for a first down.

              I thought the play was intended to be a plant, and not one where the receiver is hit in stride on his break so that he can continue at top speed.

              We may be looking for different things. You see Colin forcing Boldin to stop, and I see a play being run as intended.

              As for a DVR, either you have 100% recall or you’re getting access to some way to review it after the fact.

      2. On the broadcast I saw, the replays were few and far between… and the camera work emphasized the Texans. I had a hard time seeing how individual O-linemen were doing.

        The 2nd half fared better, keeping my eyes glued to the D-line to see how Armstead and Okoye were doing.

    2. I thought Brown might shine, but he allowed that safety and did not do well against the third string. Guess he needs more experience and training.

    3. I agree with your predictions Grant. I truly hope they replace Looney before the games start counting.

      I don’t want to get you in trouble, but did you share a little of what you’ve seen during practice with the Vernon in the backfield bit, or is that just something you think they should do? I’d like to see them do some of that personally.

      1. Yes, I was sharing what I’ve seen. Tim Ryan referenced the same thing. In two tight end sets, McDonald tends to be on the line and Davis tends to be in motion.

    4. I like your starting lineup, and I hope they are all healthy for game one. Health is always important, but this year lucky good health would come in very handy.

  27. Perception vs Reality … I thought Pinion had a disappointing night. Then I read he had a 48.8-yard average.

  28. Well, I thought he looked pretty good.

    Jeff Deeney @PFF_Jeff
    Top grade on the #49ers offensive line last night went to Brandon Thomas with a +2.7 overall grade, including +2.1 run blocking.

    1. Scooter, thanks for passing this on. It’s very encouraging and confirms the optimism Staley expressed about Thomas a few days ago.

    2. Thanks Scoot…

      I thought the O-line play in general was a positive. Obviously they fell apart when Thompson came in, but he needs to that ball out a lot quicker. Good to see BT making strides. I feel a lot better with MM moving backing to center. My concern is still Pears, he’s an upgrade in pass-pro but major downgrade in the run. Maybe Brown wins the job at some point during the season.

      1. I think Pears will be a downgrade from 2013 Anthony Davis but an upgrade from 2014 Jonathan Martin/ injured Anthony Davis.

  29. I hope that someone had some fun with the last 75 exchanges on here….there have been some close, but this was the stupidist exchange of posts EVER over an incomplete pass….Measure THAT….

    1. Wrong. On NN, they have wasted hundreds of posts just talking about how the Niners cannot have a perfect record. The pessimists are crowing how the Niners will go 0-23, while the optimists are talking about going 22-1. Now THAT is a waste of time, especially with the insults and bloviating.

    2. Oregon,

      You’re missing the point. It’s not about one incomplete pass. It’s about Grant’s pattern of inaccurately reporting facts. The fact that he doesn’t have a DVR explains a lot. It’s hard to imagine a beat reporter for the 49ers not having a DVR, but, ok, that’s how it is.

  30. Yay, Tom D.! I wrote that obituary when the 49ers couldn’t form an offense when Kaep wasn’t utilized anymore in the Read. The already woeful offensive game plan morphing into even a worse personnel situation, key players going, draft a bust, all spells out just what this game told, a team outperforming us 3 to 1 on first downs and 2 to 1 in game possession time. Even with Bill Walsh, he had to have the power to overthrow the brass before the players and how to stretch the field and keep the ball. Best for the Niner future? Sell the team and get some football people in.

    1. Niners lost a meaningless preseason game. Panic. The sky is falling. Next you will be calling to trade Kaep for Tebow.

  31. Anyone remember Harbaugh’s first preseason game? Didn’t look good at all and look where that team ended up. Tomsula’s first preseason game in my opinion was ok in comparison.

    1. The team looked sharp in their first pre-season game. It wasn’t a spectacular performance but overall the organization looked like they were prepared. Even without game planning, the speed of the team looked good.
      The run defense was good, the pass defense was not but then again, it was pretty vanilla play calling.
      On offense, its always tough to judge but I liked the play calling with a good balance of run to pass.

  32. All that matters re “overthrow” kerfuffle is that Smith was covered by and beat two DBs plus a LB(?). When was the last time a Niner blew by multiple deep coverage. Everything else is noise.

  33. Which of the following ten stays – Dorsey, Dial, Williams, Dockett, Carradine, Armstead, TJE, Purcell, Okoye, Ramsey

    The 84 Niners had a record nine defensive linemen, but that was a 4-3. Pass rushers like Fred Dean were included in the nine.

    Seven defensive linemen is a major luxury for a 3-4, especially when you realize most are cross trained.

    1. Good question. Well, we know that six guys are off limits:


      Leaves TJE, Purcell, Okoye, Ramsey

      Purcell plays just nose, right? Too specialized. And Ramsey has the injury history and to my knowledge is not standing out.

      So if they keep just seven, I’m thinking it comes down to TJE or Okoye.

      1. Me too. I see it as a contest between TJE and Okoye.

        I’d love to retain Purcell, but I can’t find the roster space.

        1. Hopefully Okoye’s switch will go on over the next few weeks and make the battle with TJE less of a contest. Would like to see them use him in stunts.

          1. Was I the only one that thought we had two Arik Armstead’s on the field when Okoye went out there? Man, those are two big humans…

            1. They both has white sleeves. Easy to follow (watched the game on a sketchy internet connection). Both similar in their ability to get push on the O-lineman.

            2. Know little about this, but it seems like Armstead can teach Okoye a thing or two about establishing leverage on olinemen.

        2. Niners could trade TJE to Denver because he has his buddy there, for a 4th or 5th round pick.
          Niners should bundle Purcell, Patton, Celek and a DB (Acker?) to Jax for a conditional first or second. Second originally, but a first if they have a winning record. Jax lost their first round pick to an ACL, and their TE broke his hand.
          You know me, I like to bundle.

          1. Well, we’ve had this discussion before. You know my thoughts on how realistic I believe such a scenario to be.

            All I’ll say is that once again I think you are over-valuing the 49ers players. I was thinking they might be able to move TJE for a 7th rounder…

            1. Von Miller had TJE live with him so they are like brothers. Maybe the Niners could get a 5th or 6th round pick for him.

              1. Sure, they might be able to. At least TJE has some NFL game tape for teams to look at and make such a decision.

          2. It would be like a supplemental draft for Jax, and could be the catalyst to succeed. Maybe I was counting on them being sick and tired of losing. Maybe they are not even trying to win and will be content to be a doormat until they leave for LA with the new alignment.
            Notice i did not bring this up until some one started talking about trades of multiple players. I thought I showed lots of restraint.

            1. Actually, no, you were also the first one on this occasion to discuss packaging multiple players for a pick. :-)

              1. No, I mentioned the team would likely look to trade players prior to cutting them. Not packaging multiple players. Your post was prior to Brodie’s.

        3. TJE and Purcell would come in handy on a 3-4 team with a lineman shortage.

          I wonder what a package deal with TJE+Purcell+(TE of your choice) fetch?

            1. Yup. Teams know the 49ers are in a tough roster math spot.

              From a talent standpoint TJE+Purcell+TE = a 2nd to 4th rounder… but would only fetch a 5th to 7th.

              The main benefits of the trade would be keeping them off NFC West rosters, and a good gesture to the player (like the Haralson trade was)

              1. I’d argue that TJE + Purcell aren’t worth a 2nd to 4th round pick even if teams didn’t believe they would be cut. Purcell has had one good preseason game in his NFL career, while TJE has shown himself to be an ok backup DL. You don’t go into the draft looking to spend a 2nd to 4th round pick on such players.

              2. Same applies with the TEs. Davis obviously worth a bit, and because Bell was drafted in the 4th round this year you wouldn’t want to let him go for much less than the same in return. After that…

                – McDonald may be an ex-2nd round pick, but he’s not performed at anywhere near that level. A team may be willing to take a gamble that the talent is there and its just been a misfit for the 49ers, but even so I’d be surprised if any team was willing to give up much more than a late round pick for him.
                – Celek and Carrier have been 3rd string TEs at their best so far in the NFL. Don’t expect any teams to come sniffing around for them with anything more than luke warm interest.
                – The rest of the TEs you can forget about in terms of trade bait.

                The idea of packaging three guys that individually aren’t worth a whole lot and turning that into a high draft pick is wishful thinking. You don’t spend a high to mid draft pick for a bunch of bubble/ bottom of the roster players.

          1. Jax lost the third pick, Dante Fowler, to an ACL just after the draft. Purcell excelled and should have his best value at this time because he stoned the Texan offense. Julius Thomas broke a bone in his hand, so he is iffy. So any one of the bubble TEs could be expendable, and fill a need at Jax. I threw in Patton because he might be out competed by an undrafted rookie. I think Jax needs DB help, so I threw in a DB, because the Niners have depth.
            This bundle could be for a conditional third round, but the Niners will get something instead of cutting them and getting nothing.
            Jax will get 4 players for one future draft choice, and they will fill 4 needs. Sounds fair to both sides.

            1. This ground has been thoroughly plowed. From our last go around this topic you were pretty much the only one that believes this sort of scenario to be a reasonable trade. I don’t imagine that has changed any. I think we all understand your thoughts on packaging bottom of the roster players for a high (conditional) draft pick. Lets just agree to disagree on this.

        4. I just hope that Seattle doesn’t pick up Purcell or for that matter any of the guys we have to release. They recently released defensive tackle Tony McDaniel. I hate the thought of the 49ers being a “farm club” for the Seahags defensive line.

          Is Purcell available for the practice squad?

  34. I’m sure others have mentioned it but it’s sure nice to come away from a pre-season game with no injuries.

  35. Positives were numerous.
    Game management solved.
    Innovative play calling.
    No delay of game penalties.
    Goal line stand.
    No major injuries.
    Hayne plane.
    The only negatives were the pass defense, ILB struggles and the score.
    I am satisfied.

        1. That play may, note the may, have been unexpected. I don’t see any thing innovative about it. All teams try to go long when it’s not expected.

          As for missing by a mile, it was only thirty feet over Smith’s head.

          1. I did not see any where they ran straight into the teeth of the defense. That in itself qualifies as innovative to me. I did not see any triple option reverse sweeps, but they were pretty vanilla by design.

  36. Eric Branch @Eric_Branch
    #Texans Alfred Blue had runs of 14 and 32 yards in 1st quarter. #49ers ILB Shayne Skov was cleared out by lead blocker on both plays.

    Skov flashed on some plays, but it was these negatives that will keep him from claiming a spot on the 53 unless he improves.

  37. I wont throw out grades for a scrimmage but overall some of my fears were mildly put at ease with this first appearance of 2015. When it comes to pre-season games the first quarter to half are all that really count and are the only segments of the game that should come under scrutiny. Most players that shine in the 3rd and 4th are doing so because they’re playing there and the coaches don’t have them earlier in the game for a reason. They’re(coaches) scouting for their practice team in the second half of pre-season games. With that said this was a competitive game through the first half with the team even ending the first two quarters on top.

    In regards to:

    QB’s; Kaepernick – Would have been nice to have seen him look cleaner in his first and only series but not going to beat him up over it. Game 3 is where he needs to look in regular season form and I’ll wait until then to focus the lens on him. I’m glad there weren’t reports of them fishing Dylan’s body out of the bay after that introduction. Hopefully the kid can keep his chin up and respond with a better performance. Then again, it can’t be much worse.

    RB’s: Most RB’s that aren’t terrible look good in preseason. Hayne having success was exciting to see but even though I’m a fan I agree expectations must remain tempered, after all Gabbert looked pretty good too. My guy Davis had a nice run as well. Being the first game and not having Bush in the rotation gave us so little to look at with how the team intends on using their stable of rushers.

    DL: I’m in the middle on Tanks performance. I saw the good plays and I saw plenty where he showed little effort to disengage. The same though could be said for most of the line. There were good plays and not so good plays by everyone involved. All in all I saw a group that is still sorting themselves out and getting used to playing with each other.

    LB: We know there were coverage issues, we also know that we’re down two HoF inside linebackers and only one of them is coming back. It probably won’t ever be as good as we had it, expectations should be tempered for this group as a whole to help limit frustration as they find a suitable replacement for Pattrick.

    Brooks didn’t show anything on the right side and outside of a few plays I didn’t see much from Lemnoier that convinces me he’s found out how to sack the QB. I’m not saying it’s the only thing to judge him by but it’s what I’m looking for from him at this point to tell me he should go in the game before Eli. Having them switch sides on us I think we need to see where everyone is ultimately going to be playing once Lynch gets back.

    Can’t wait to see more.

    1. If CK hits that pass to T.Smith he is getting praise up the ying yang. That’s why preseason is just a glorified practice for the rookies!
      Nothing matters except week one on Monday night vs.the Vikes

    2. “Most RB’s that aren’t terrible look good in preseason” agree 100%.

      I dang near praised Glen Coffee and Boobie Dixon as preseason Franco Harrison’s.

      What I learned most after Hayne’s run… Bruce Miller’s made the squad after wiping out two defenders.

      1. Bruce Miller gets deserved praise for that run, but when you rewatch it he didn’t really blast anyone out of the way. He gave a little push to the guy Celek (I believe it was Celek anyway) was on to help him out, that kept going and took out the CB was was already going backwards before contact.

        The block that really makes the play was made by Patton. He took out the LB (or safety?) that was meant to be filling that gap.

    3. Love Harold’s speed and energy, but while trying to set the edge he got blocked out of the picture like he was on skates. I see him as pass rush specialist for now… or some hybrid role Mangini cooks up.

  38. The importance of the Kap to Smith bomb attempt is that it put the league on notice that the long bomb is back. This will go a long way to keeping the safeties honest and neutralizing the option of the defense stacking the line of scrimmage. The mere threat of the deep ball connection is almost as effective as completing the pass.

      1. Scooter:

        I was looking for Millard during the game, but couldn’t find him. I think I had the wrong number for him. I know you’ve been saying he’ll probably make the team. Do you have any comments regarding his game play, if in fact, he played at all?

        1. Yeah, I didn’t see him on offense, though I didn’t really pay much attention to the last quarter or most of the 3rd quarter. I know he did play on the kickoff coverage unit, and made a STs tackle.

        2. Millard’s number is 33. I thought I saw him out there.

          Several players are sharing numbers.

          4 – Acosta, King
          20 – Acker, Davis (Mike)
          33 – Millard, Hicks
          38 – Haynes, Whitehead
          40 – Gaskins, Beauharnais
          45 – Cleveland, Rush
          46 – Carrier, Lemon
          48 – Skove, Anderson
          64 – Purcell, Renfrow
          68 – Ramsey, Miller (Patrick)

    1. I myself would probably let Dockett go if Okoye or Purcell exceled this pre season. Much rather have youth on the way up then a injured veteran on the way down.

        1. +1

          and some trades…………. I am keeping the Faith w Moody for now……… and want to see if Okoye can make the 53 – anyone but Dahl! I, personally, hate the idea of giving up slots from guys with potential to those devoted to special teams- even though I value the significance of special teams.

      1. I beg to differ.
        Dockette is a beast, and the Niners had to fight him for years, so they know how tough he is. He will be a secret weapon. No expectations, but a strip sack machine.

    2. An early speculation, quite early.
      Agree on Dahl, he would seem vulnerable. McCray looked pretty good on ST, and Tartt is promising in coverage. So Bethea, Reid, Ward, Tartt, & McCray I guess.
      TJE & Purcell late cuts/trade in case of August injuries. With 12 team scouts watching, Purcell helped his resume. Another hot game……….?
      Could Celek bring a 7th?

  39. I want Kaep to improve. His last press conference was a vast improvement over his previous 2. I hope Kaep can improve his throwing, too. It was interesting to hear about Logan telling a QB to take 15 % off the throw. Sounds like Kaep is throwing with more touch and arc.
    I think backing off the force is good, but I also think that where the release point is critical to get more touch. When throwing a fastball, the release point is at the end of the arm fling in front of the body. When throwing a football, if the ball is released sooner, at the top of the throw, there will be less velocity, but more control, or touch. More wrist, less arm.
    Kaep should work on throwing a more catchable ball. He should study Dan Marino. He threw a ball with pinpoint accuracy, and his arm motion was quick and compact. Marino was the best throwing QB in the NFL, and he deserved to win a SB, but his defense let him down.
    Kaep should practice the same play over and over, and practice releasing the ball sooner and sooner, until he can make the throw before the player makes his break.
    When I think about Kaep and his throwing, I am reminded of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. The mine foreman asks the Sundance kid to shoot a rock. He misses and the foreman turns his head away in disgust. Then the kid asks if he can move. The foreman says OK, and the kid draws like lightening and blasts the rock to bits. I think Kaep is best when he is on the run and slinging it. Like the Sundance Kid.

    1. Thanks for pointing this out. Just a few comments:
      1. Love Gabbert’s release and would love to see him supplant Kaepernick. I was a major fan of his but am starting to doubt he can win consistently. We’ll see about this year. Also hate the dumb cap he always wears backwards behind the microphone, those ugly headphones, and his robotic responses.
      2. Simpson runs a very nice crossing pattern. Throwing to him to move the chains might be money in the bank. The guy sure does cover ground fast.
      3. Looks like Thomas will be a fine addition to the line. The one I’m concerned about is Martin.

        1. I am anxious to see the Hayne plane take off this weekend George- If I go.

          That said, those w knowledge of deeper rosters, care to consider trade scenarios……. this is also based upon someone having value, even if limited.

          TE’s – all, absent Davis
          DL- Purcell, TJE
          OLB- Lemonier- not likely w limited depth, but in case Harold shines…?
          RB- Hunter (personally, I think the 49ers are committed to him……). Maybe Davis for the right price if he shines?
          DB- Acker

          Our needs- ILB, RG- ?

          It is early, and we hear the hype per Reaser and Moody (I am crossing my fingers w them and Tartt as well), but can we trust them? If Bowman goes down, then what?

    2. Also, did you get down to the part where Biderman tweeted this?
      “Fact: the only scouting Trent Baalke did of Jarryd Hayne before his signing was on YouTube.”

      I wonder it that’s really true.

      1. Those highlight films showed me a scoring machine, and other ones showed him taking a lick, and laying the wood.
        He was competing against athletes, he was not playing ping pong.

  40. “My dear {Grant},” he said, “the only way people know what you mean is what you write or say. You must write what you mean.” … Ian Watt via Lowell Cohn

  41. Most of us succumb to Draft Crushes, and everyone would like to see more offense, so WRs often are in our sights. Remember Stephen Hill?
    Hunter, who went to Titans?
    White this year, now maybe out for season?
    Perriman, not practicing for Ravens?

  42. Maiocco reporting the 49ers phone is blowing up for a trade for one of their TE’s. Carrier and/or Cleveland….

    1. Over-staffed at tight end, TB got some return on an asset. Not much in return, but Cleveland would seem to have been one of the lesser values of the TE group. I don’t know how the league perceives Carrier, probably not too highly, but Celek is probably recognized as a Journeyman. This is a tad earlier than I expected any deals, but then BB is generally ahead of the curve.
      For Assante, how bad can it be? Good team, coach, & QB with a shot at a ring.

  43. Hi
    I am from Australia Just started watching NFL Learning the rules :)

    Please be gentle

    Got some dumb Qs if I may

    After the 53 have been selected what happens if you get injuries ie if both QB are injured what happens? or punter ,LB or what ever.

    What was hayne messing around with his jersey while waiting the kick off? Its like it was too small for him? Can someone explain

    Can you bring reserves into the 53 later?
    Does anyone play offense and defense or is it either one or the other?
    Who decides when play starts again after a stoppage ? The Referee or the attacking side starts when they are ready? Does it ever happen that the defense are still sorting them selves out and the attacking side starts play?

    Sort of get most of it just trying to understand

    1. Welcome Michael, and we have another Aussie named Scooter_McG on this blog who is very nice and a wealth of football knowledge.

      After the 53 have been selected what happens if you get injuries ie if both QB are injured what happens? or punter ,LB or what ever.

      In game, your only options are your emergency players that can function in those roles but are not truly adept in the respective skills required to execute at a high level. After the game and injuries are assessed that will require time to heal, they can activate a player(s) from the practice squard, execute a trade or sign a Free Agent.

      What was hayne messing around with his jersey while waiting the kick off? Its like it was too small for him?

      You want jerseys skin tight so the opposition has little to grab onto.

      Can you bring reserves into the 53 later?

      Yes, but the number must remain at 53 active roster and on game day it is actually 46 available to play.

      Does anyone play offense and defense or is it either one or the other?

      One or two players are typically capable of that especially back in the day, but not so much in today’s NFL.

      Who decides when play starts again after a stoppage ? The Referee or the attacking side starts when they are ready?


      Does it ever happen that the defense are still sorting them selves out and the attacking side starts play?

      Yes, but every time the offense substitutes, the defense gets the same opportunity. Sometimes the offense won’t substitute and try and exploit the defensive personnel if they feel they have a strategic advantage.

    2. Welcome, mate. No worries, there are fans who have been watching for years and do not know all the intricacies of the game. For the life of me, I could not calculate salary cap implications or dead money roll over or hit. I let others do that.
      After the preseason, they have cut downs, and there is a big kerfluffle because some players will be grabbed, yet some teams have the advantage because of their losing (last year) record. Many teams will try to stash players on the practice squad, but some teams will poach players. However, if they are nabbed, they have to give them a contract, and it usually means they will play, so many players will accept the promotion. Some players like Okoye will be content to stay with a team, and turn down the other team, and be content to be on the practice squad, and be ready to move to the 53 if a player is injured.
      Football is complicated, but entertaining. It can also be simple, and gut wrenching. I hope to be entertained by seeing lots of the Hayne Plane.

    3. The offense will try to take advantage of the defense, and catch them with 12 men on the field, because it will mean that they get to replay the down after moving 5 yards farther down the field. However, the play could still be run, so essentially it is a free play an they do not worry if it is intercepted, so they will take a shot down field. It is similar to the continued play in soccer by the ref claiming advantage.
      The defense can prevent the 12 man penalty by not substituting, or calling a time out before the snap of the ball. However, burning a time out is strategically advantageous to the other team because they are generally used in the last 2 minutes of each half to stop the clock.

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