Category Archives: Offseason camps

Thoughts and observations from Day 3 of 49ers OTAs

Random thoughts, observations, pee tests and wind-affected punts from Day 3 of this week’s voluntary practices in Santa Clara…
•CB Karl Paymah, who is getting first-team reps in the absence of Shawntae Spencer and Nate Clements, jumped a slant route from Alex Smith to Ted Ginn and intercepted early in practice. Overall, though, Smith looked pretty sharp throughout the day. He looped a deep pass into the arms of Dominique Zeigler as Tarell Brown tried to defend in dime coverage, and later he found Josh Morgan in front of Dashon Goldson on a deep crossing route. Smith did leave one snap on the ground, when Tony Wragge was in at center.

49ers’ offense feeling good in Y2Raye

I know some of you are going to get tired of hearing this, especially in the absence of actual victories, but the 49ers are feeling great about going into the 2010 season with the same offensive system. Take quarterback Alex Smith, whose burgeoning confidence was on display shortly into this morning’s practice in Santa Clara.

Notes from Day 2 of this week’s OTAs

Random thoughts and observations from this morning’s voluntary practice in Santa Clara…
• More or less the same lineup from yesterday, meaning no NT Aubrayo Franklin, LB Manny Lawson, CB Shawntae Spencer, CB Nate Clements, DT Kentwan Balmer, RB Michael Robinson or LB Keaton Kristick. WR Jared Perry resolved his travel hang-ups and was on the field for his first full practice as a 49er. Wide receivers coach Jerry Sullivan quickly welcomed Perry by ripping him a new one for leaning with his shoulder while running an out route during passing drills.

Practice defined by 49ers’ absences

The first day of full practice – veterans and rookies, free-agent acquisitions and rehabbed medical patients – is generally a happy day for an NFL team. It’s like a glance at the future, if through a very hazy piece of glass. But fairly or unfairly, Monday’s practice in Santa Clara was defined as much by those who were absent as those who were in attendance.

Thoughts and observations from this morning’s practice

Random thoughts and observations from this morning’s chilly voluntary practice in Santa Clara…
• Tough day for the passing game. Alex Smith started the day with a completion to Michael Crabtree, but was generally up and down, floating a few deep balls. And even when Smith hit the target, the football didn’t always stick. TE Delanie Walker had a pass bounce off his chest. Dominique Zeigler saw one go through his hands. So did Ted Ginn, and that one was intercepted by rookie CB Phillip Adams.

Why 49ers’ receivers had advantage today

Mike Singletary told his captains, and the captains passed the directive down the chain of command this morning: When the ball’s in the air, let the offensive player catch it. No reason to get tangled up and risk an injury this early in the campaign. “Obviously, it did not sink in deep enough,” Singletary said after practice.

49 questions heading into OTAs

Excitement is building for the four consecutive days of organized team activities that begin Monday in Santa Clara. And I don’t mean Alex Smith’s excitement, or Taylor Mays’, or Mike Singletary’s or yours. I mean MY excitement. I need some live football to report and analyze. To set the mood, here are 49 questions I hope to be able to answer after the dust settles Thursday.

Ready to bring out ‘the best linebacker that’s in Navorro’

Patrick Willis and Takeo Spikes form one of the savviest and most physical sets of inside linebackers in the NFL. But Spikes is 33 years old, heading into his 13th NFL season out of Auburn. The 49ers need to groom a replacement. Maybe Matt Wilhelm or Scott McKillop will emerge as the third man. Or maybe it will be Navorro Bowman. Here’s a Q&A with the third-round pick out of Penn State.

Free-agent tryouts produce winners, losers

According to the San Jose Mercury News, the 49ers have offered a free-agent contract to former UC Davis wide receiver Bakari Grant, who was in Santa Clara over the weekend for a tryout. But at least one undrafted rookie who came for a tryout does not expect to be signed.

Undrafted free agent has famous relatives

Turns out undrafted free-agent cornerback Patrick Stoudamire’s cousins include basketball stars Damon and Salim Stoudamire, plus former NFL player Chris Mims. For the record, Patrick Stoudamire stood out with a pretty good performance at the Niners’ rookie camp this weekend, but not sure about his crossover dribble.

Jimmy Raye grades his new beef

I covered Jimmy Raye for his two seasons in Oakland, 2004-05, and I knew he could spin a yarn. But my exposure was limited; we didn’t get to talk to assistant coaches much in those days. I’m looking forward to hearing Raye on a regular basis — starting with this Q&A from Saturday.

Manusky’s first impressions

Defensive coordinator Greg Manusky spoke to reporters Saturday, ambling to the podium with the use of a cane (I’m told he’s had hip replacement surgery) to discuss his newest defenders. Here are some excerpts.