49ers 35, Rams 11: Grades

ST. LOUIS – Here are the grades for the 49ers’ 35-11 win over the Rams. KAEPERNICK: B+. He played very well – 115.7 passer rating – even though he rarely went through his progessions.  He didn’t have to – in this game his first read usually was open. This season if his first read isn’t open, he scrambles. On one play in the fourth quarter Kaepernick started scrambling to his…

September 26, 2013

Road game on a Thursday is not the scenario for a 49ers recovery

Here is my Tuesday column on the upcoming 49ers-Rams game. You don’t have to look hard to find reasons to pick the 49ers to beat the Rams Thursday night in St. Louis. Here’s one: The Rams stink. Last Sunday they got destroyed by the Cowboys, a .500 team the past two seasons. And the Rams showed no emotion while they got stomped. It was like they expected it and didn’t…

September 24, 2013

49ers 7, Colts 27: Grades

SAN FRANCISCO – Here are the grades for the 49ers’ 27-7 Week 3 loss to the Colts. KAEPERNICK: D-. His second horrendous game in a row. He completed just 13-of-27 passes for 150 yards. He also threw an interception and fumbled. Kaepernick is the kind of quarterback who wants to feed the ball to the receivers he trusts but he trusts just one receiver – Anquan Boldin. Kaepernick hardly looks…

September 22, 2013

Kaepernick’s brilliance masks issues for 49ers

Here is my Monday column. Enjoy. SANTA CLARA – Let’s focus on the good after the 49ers’ Week 1 win over the Packers, a very good team, probably not a great team. THE GOOD After just 11 starts, Colin Kaepernick probably is the best quarterback in the NFL. You could say he singlehandedly beat the Packers. His defense gave up 28 points, he had no rushing attack and still he…

September 9, 2013

49ers 34, Packers 28: Grades

SAN FRANCISCO – My grades for the 49ers after their 34-28 win over the Packers: KAEPERNICK: A. He outplayed Aaron Rodgers and shredded the Packers’ defense despite having no rushing threat, one wide receiver and one tight end. Kaepernick may be the only quarterback in the NFL who can pull that off. Here’s his final stat line: 29-of-37 for 412 yards, 3 TDs, a 129.4 passer rating, 9-for-18 on third…

September 8, 2013

Packers have a painful plan for 49ers, but a solution is in the strategy

Here is my Friday column previewing the 49ers-Packers game. Jim Harbaugh has to understand Clay Matthews isn’t bluffing. Matthews wants to take out Colin Kaepernick. Every Packer does. Matthews said so. If the 49ers run the read-option, the Packers will try to hurt Kaepernick. They’d be nuts not to. It’s legal. It’s smart. Knocking him out is the Packers’ best chance to win, and the read-option play is the best…

September 6, 2013

49ers 15, Chiefs 13: Grades

My grades for the 49ers’ 15-13 preseason victory over the Chiefs: QUARTERBACKS: D. Colin Kaepernick completed one of two passes for negative three yards. He overthrew the one pass he attempted downfield. Colt McCoy and Scott Tolzien were horrible. McCoy threw an interception and Tolzien averaged just 3.8 yards per pass attempt. If those two keep playing like that, the 49ers won’t be able to trade either one for a…

August 16, 2013

Training camp report: Harbaugh breaks up fight

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers practiced in shorts and shells Tuesday evening in preparation for Friday night’s preseason game against the Chiefs. Here’s what stood out to me during the evening practice. THE GOOD 1. MarQueis Gray – He made two jaw-dropping catches during 11-on-11 team drills. First, he ran a seam route down the middle of the field. Tolzien threw it up for Gray. Gray jumped, twisted and caught…

August 13, 2013

Training camp report: Jenkins shut out, Brown moves to nickelback

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me during Monday afternoon’s padded practice. THE GOOD 1. Tarell Brown – He returned to practice after missing the last two and was the starting nickelback in place of Carlos Rogers. Brown gave up just one catch while playing nickelback – a 15-yard completion to Austin Collie. 2. Aldon Smith –He sat out for an hour during the middle portion of team…

August 12, 2013

Training camp report: Kendall Hunter returns to sloppy practice

SAN FRANCISCO – Here’s what stood out to me at Saturday afternoon’s padded practice at Candlestick Park. THE GOOD 1. Kendall Hunter – He returned to practice for the first time since he tore his Achilles’ tendon last November. He didn’t participate much, but he got his feet wet. 2. Jonathan Goodwin – He returned to practice after missing the past two week and immediately took over his spot as…

August 10, 2013

49ers sign CB Eric Wright to one-year deal

The 49ers just announced they’ve signed 28-year old cornerback Eric Wright to a one-year contract. The 49ers immediately placed Wright on the non-football injury/illness list, and waived the L-train, Lowell Rose. Here’s a written statement from Trent Baalke: “We are pleased to welcome Eric to the 49ers organization and look forward to his contributions. Eric is currently tending to a personal matter and he will join the team as soon…

August 8, 2013

Fangio says Brock has “been doing OK” in training camp

SANTA CLARA — Vic Fangio spoke in the 49ers’ media tent Tuesday afternoon. Here’s what he said, courtesy of the 49ers.   What have you seen from CB Tramaine Brock here since he’s taken over that number thee job? “He’s been doing OK. He’s had some plays that he’s missed on his assignments and exact pickups, but, he’s been improving on that as we go through this whole entire week….

August 6, 2013

Carlos Rogers is no loser

SANTA CLARA – Carlos Rogers spoke in the media tent after practice Sunday afternoon. One reporter asked Rogers if he draws motivation from the 49ers’ recent interest in cornerback Eric Wright and their signing of cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha earlier this offseason. “No, I really don’t,” said Rogers, shrugging his shoulders. “I don’t want to sound conceited, but I don’t really pay attention. Anybody who they bring in can help the…

August 5, 2013

Training camp report: The return of Jenkins, Bowman, Aldon Smith and more

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me at Sunday morning’s padded practice. THE GOOD 1. Aldon Smith – He practiced for the first time in a few days. Joe Staley didn’t practice, so Aldon Smith dominated. He got three sacks, and was in the backfield so often he started slowing down when he got to the quarterback so the offense could finish practicing their play. 2. NaVorro Bowman…

August 4, 2013

Training camp report: Culliver injures left knee, Vernon Davis catches a TD playing WR

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me at Thursday’s padded practice. THE GOOD 1. Vernon Davis – He lined up everywhere – tight end, in the backfield and out wide. In a red-zone drill, Davis lined up at split end across from Tarell Brown. Davis beat Brown on an inside move and caught a touchdown pass from Colt McCoy. 2. Nnamdi Asomugha – He was the second-team right…

August 1, 2013

Training camp report: Patrick Willis leaves early with an apparent right wrist injury

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me at Wednesday’s padded practice. THE GOOD 1. Marlon Moore – He was the starting split end and he caught five passes and a touchdown during team drills. He also made the catch of the day, as he’s done every day of training camp. He ran a fade route against Tarell Brown, Kaepernick threw a back shoulder pass but it was at…

July 31, 2013

Training camp report: Eric Reid’s breakout day

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me at Sunday’s padded practice. THE GOOD 1. Eric Reid – He was the best free safety on the field by far. In 11-on-11 team drills, Reid knocked away a Kaepernick pass intended for Anquan Boldin running a slant. Also, Reid intercepted a Scott Tolzien pass intended for Garrett Celek. During individual drills, Ed Donatell had the safeties practice single-high coverage, having…

July 28, 2013

Training camp report: Kyle Williams, Chris Culliver and Eric Reid stand out

SANTA CLARA – Here’s what stood out to me at the 49ers’ Thursday afternoon pad-less training camp practice. THE GOOD 1. Kyle Williams – He looked as explosive and fast as he did last offseason. In 7-on-7 drills, Williams blew past Marcus Cooper on a deep route and easily caught a 40-yard toss from B.J. Daniels. 2. Anquan Boldin – He snatched a sure interception away from Tarell Brown on…

July 25, 2013

Carlos Rogers: “My play on the field speaks for itself.”

SANTA CLARA – Carlos Rogers spoke to Bay Area reporters Wednesday afternoon. Here’s what he said. Q: What do you enter camp feeling like you have to accomplish or work on? ROGERS: Everything. Me and my coach were talking about that, thing that he can see I need to get better at. When you’ve done it so many times and you’re OK at a lot of positions, we try to…

July 24, 2013

Report: 49ers trade for CB Eric Wright

ESPN is reporting the 49ers have traded a conditional late-round 2014 draft pick to the Buccaneers for 28-year-old cornerback Eric Wright. Wright played just 10 games last season because he injured his ankle and was suspended four games for violating the league’s PED policy. He was also arrested for DUI last Friday. In the 10 games he played last season, he gave up 96.6 passer rating according to Pro Football Focus. He…

July 19, 2013