OTA rundown: Beginning and ending with Rice

Jerry Rice attended the last part of 49ers practice today for a filming of the ESPN show, “Homecoming.” After today’s session of organized team activities, the team gathered around as he spoke to them for about 10 minutes on the field.

Rice, known throughout his career for his maniacal workout regimen, talked to the team about practice habits and making every session on the field count. He also stressed the importance of teamwork.

 

No word when the segment is scheduled to run. Check your local listings for the times and dates in your area.

 

Here’s what else is going on:

 

–Cornerback Walt Harris’ likely season-ending ACL injury means the 49ers will have even more urgency to look to the veteran free-agent market. There are several options available,

  

–The Hill Named Pain has been ruled off-limits to the media who cover the team. It made a nice vantage point to watch practices. But because of liability issues, we are no longer allowed access onto the hill.

 

–Veteran receiver Arnaz Battle probably wishes he were so lucky. Battle, still rehabilitating a foot injury, spent a good portion of practice on the hill. He was seen doing lunges up the hill for a while. Then, he shuffled backward up the hill. Finally, he was seen side-stepping.

 

–Receivers Michael Crabtree (foot), Dominique Zeigler (concussion) and Jason Hill (ankle), and defensive end Kentwan Balmer (knee) did not practice. Linebacker Jeff Ulbrich did not attend because of a personal obligation.

 

–It was a big day of practice for tight end Vernon Davis, who caught a handful of practices during 7-on-7 and team drills. On one play, he leaped to make a catch from Alex Smith about 15 yards downfield, then he shrugged Dashon Goldson to the ground before turning upfield.

 

–On the very next play, Goldson picked off a Smith pass intended for J.J. Finley and returned it for a touchdown. Smith was picked off later by rookie cornerback Carlos Thomas on a pass for Mark Bradford.

 

–Quarterbacks Shaun Hill and Smith (two interceptions aside) threw the ball very well on the rare windless day on the 49ers’ practice field. The nicest pass of the day was probably Hill’s perfectly lofted pass to Michael Robinson on a wheel route down the right sideline. Robinson made the catch downfield after getting a couple steps on outside linebacker Diyral Briggs.

 

–Hill showed nice athleticism when he moved to the right to avoid a blitzing Patrick Willis up the middle. Hill then fired high and incomplete to Brandon Jones at the sideline. Hill later hit Jones at the sideline on a sprint-out. Smith connected on a similar pass to Bradford on a sprint-out to the right.

 

–Jones had a good day of practice. He made a nice catch off his shoe-tops of a pass from Hill along the left sideline.

 

–There were no live updates on Twitter today because of a non-functioning mobile phone. Yesterday I was on dad duty at the pool with my two children. I was seated in a lawn chair just a few feet from the steps of the pool watching my non-swimming 4-year-old.

 

Luckily, I was paying close attention when a bigger kid (darn 6 year olds) decided it would be fun to drag my child off the steps and into the deeper water. I bolted into action and jumped in the pool to assist my child.

 

Little Lucy is doing just fine. (She thought it was pretty funny that I got all wet.) However, my phone did not fare so well. Thanks to Ben S., my Facebook friend, my phone is currently resting a ziplock bag filled with rice – in hopes it will draw out the moisture.

 

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