49ers training camp report: Malcolm Smith is out for the season


Linebacker Malcolm Smith warms up during 49ers training camp


Here’s what stood out to me during practice at Levi’s Stadium Saturday morning.


1. LB Malcolm Smith. Smith is out for the season after tearing his pectoral muscle during a collision with NaVorro Bowman and Matt Breida. This is a significant loss for the 49ers, who were counting on Smith to be a starter — he is the team’s best linebacker when it comes to pass coverage. Smith’s injury means Reuben Foster probably will have to start as a rookie and Bowman probably will have to play in passing situations, where he is a liability.


1. QB Brian Hoyer. Hoyer was the best player on the field. He completed 17 of 22 pass attempts for 195 yards and two touchdowns during the move-the-ball period of practice, which is when the offense starts at its 30-yard line and attempts to drive the length of the field. Hoyer also played well during a third down drill, when he converted four-of-eight third downs and consistently threw the ball past the first-down marker, unlike Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert, a.k.a. Check-Down Charlie. On third-and-12, Hoyer completed a 15-yard pass to Marquise Goodwin. On third-and-8, Hoyer completed a 12-yard pass to Pierre Garcon. On third-and-6, Hoyer completed a 12-yard pass to Goodwin. And on third-and-4, Hoyer completed a 15-yard pass to Kapri Bibbs. If Hoyer stays healthy, I expect he will win nine games this season.

2. QB Matt Barkley. Barkley led the second-string offense to a 70-yard touchdown drive against the first-string defense. He completed four-of-five passes on that drive for 61 yards, including a 19-yard touchdown pass to Aldrick Robinson.

3. RB Matt Breida. Breida had a 12-yard run up the middle, a 7-yard run around the left end and a 20-yard diving catch down the sideline. He played better than every other running back. It’s easy to see why the coaching staff likes this undrafted rookie. He’s fast, he runs hard and he’s tough. He doesn’t slow down and brace himself before he gets hit – he throws himself into tackles. He almost certainly will make the team, and I’m guessing he will be the primary kick returner.

4. WR Pierre Garcon. Garcon gained 71 yards on six catches. His best catch came when he beat rookie linebacker Reuben Foster over the middle with a deep crossing route and gained 33 yards. Garcon is the best receiver the Niners have had since I started covering the team in 2011. He is a better version of Mohamed Sanu – Shanahan’s possession receiver last season in Atlanta.

5. WR Marquise Goodwin. Goodwin scored a touchdown and gained 92 yards on six catches. He is a better version of Taylor Gabriel – Shanahan’s deep-threat receiver last season in Atlanta. Shanahan has found better versions of a few players he had last season with the Falcons. Fullback Kyle Juszczyk is another one – he’s a better version of Falcons fullback Patrick DiMarco. I expect the Niners offense will rank in the top half of the NFL this season.

6. WR Aldrick Robinson. Robinson scored a touchdown and gained 78 yards on five catches. He clearly is the third-best receiver on the team behind Garcon and Goodwin. The fourth-best receiver is Jeremy Kerley, and the fifth-best receiver is rookie Trent Taylor.

7. The run defense. This offseason, running backs have had very little success against the Niners defense. Today, Carlos Hyde gained 11 yards on eight carries, Matt Breida gained 26 yards on seven carries Joe Williams lost four yards on four carries. I expect the run defense will be a strength of the 49ers this season, as opposed to last season when it was the worst run defense in franchise history.


1. The pass defense. This has become the team’s biggest weakness. Today, the pass defense gave up 38 catches on 56 pass attempts – a completion percentage of 67.9. And the defense had a particularly difficult time defending play action. Most of the time when the offense used a run fake, at least one wide receiver would end up wide open. This pass defense could be one of the worst in the league.

2. LB NaVorro Bowman. During a one-on-one drill, Bowman gave up a deep touchdown catch to Carlos Hyde. Hyde didn’t juke Bowman or use any kind of move to create separation – Hyde simply ran past him. Bowman couldn’t keep up. He even had trouble turning his body to locate the ball in the air.

3. OG Joshua Garnett. Garnett missed practice with a knee injury which will require surgery, according to Kyle Shanahan. Like Malcolm Smith, Garnett could spend the season on I.R. Zane Beadles will replace him at left guard.

4. RB Tim Hightower. Hightower missed practice for the second day in a row after suffering an undisclosed leg injury on Thursday. The 49ers P.R. staff did not include Hightower in their injury report either of the past two days. Strange that the team is being so secretive about this injury.

5. CB Rashard Robinson. Robinson left practice early due to an apparent leg injury and did not return.

6. CB Akhello Witherspoon. Witherspoon replaced Robinson in the starting lineup and gave up a 19-yard touchdown catch to Aldrick Robinson. Witherspoon is not ready to contribute in any way during the regular season. He plays with no confidence.

This article has 323 Comments

  1. The thing about Smith, while it’s a bummer to lose anyone, LB is the one position we have tons of depth. But this injury might just insure Brooks, and Lynch make the squad.

    1. differentiate between depth and talent………from a to z on the spectrum…………polar opposites

      1. Mike

        I think that we’ve got plenty of both ‘right now’…we’re going to need a couple of warm bodies as the season progresses THOUGH….

  2. I want to hope the defensive backfield will coalesce, but it’s concerning.

    Excited about the offense, though. All I want at this point is for them to be interesting and fun to watch.

  3. Well, I wasn’t that enthused by the Smith signing anyway, but never good to lose a likely starter before the season begins. Having Garnett out for a lengthy period also doesn’t help.

    But good to keep hearing Hoyer is doing well. It will make a nice change to see competent QB play, assuming he can carry this over to the games.

      1. Garnett could develop into a decent player on a different team but right now he is terrible in pass pro. Not average, not below average… Terrible!
        And that coupled with his struggles on the move makes him a bad fit for this team.
        The backup might actually be an upgrade on this team but the real problem is the issue it creates with depth.

        1. Shoup

          I will confess, that being in Western central Oregon, I am sort of at the mercy of the blogs, for directions on our new recruits, draftees, and ‘pick-ups’. Other than local newspapers, sports mags and local media for information about MY 49ers. I’ve been following Matt Maiocco for the last 4 years he was with the Press democrat, and now with CSN, and I must admit that Grant is my current favorite…more for volume than accuracy…and the commentary from all of the bloggers. …both good and bad. As I have previously stated, I have been a 49er faithful since 1949, and have seen many ups and downs. I am very hopeful this year (actually every year) that we will get over the hump that Baalke and Harbaugh have put in our way…ever since Kwame Harris, I have been nervous about drafting Linemen from Stanford, Marcus Martin, and Garnett…Will someone please tell me how can Garnett win the Hickock award with as poor footwork as he has ? If it’s only favoritism that got Soloman drafted this year, ahead of more deserving players, please say so…..We have draft issues….

          1. Oregon,
            I admit I hated the Garnett selection… he was over drafted. Drafting a limited offensive guard in the first doesn’t compute.
            Solomon however wasn’t over drafted. I would have gone in a different direction because I didn’t like his fit… but he is a talented player and worthy of a top 5 selection. Honestly, I would love the pick if I knew he could play the edge in passing situations.

            1. I had hopes for Garnett eventually being Iupati 2.0. Looks like that hope is now just a dream.

  4. “I expect the Niners offense will rank in the top half of the nfl next year”. Well in order for that to be true the o line has to hold up. I read that the o line was giving up sack after sack but they were letting the play go.

    1. Yea, I just don’t see where Hoyer is going to have time and room to step up and make those deep throws. Especially against these defensive lines in this division.

      1. A lot of the deep throws come when he rolls out of the pocket on play action passes.

      2. Don’t worry. Shanahan will figure out a scheme that doesn’t require the team to have an offensive line.

      3. Yep, Hoyer will not be able to throw like when the Niner pass rushers touch him. He will likely be flat on his back, and it is hard to throw from that position.

    1. I do. Losing Smith makes it harder to take out Bowman on passing downs. Now the team needs Ray Ray Armstrong to step up.

        1. Jayson DiManche got injured almost as soon as he hit the field. We’ll be lucky to have *any* LBs left.

              1. I agree with Grant- losing Malcolm Smith is a big blow. He’s the best all around linebacker we had on day 1. Now you are going to have Bowman, who is a liability in passing game and a rook. They need to get Foster up to speed at a rapid pace and then pray for no more LB injuries or else this is going to start to look like last year all over again.

      1. 43.8 in coverage last year for Smith. You could use the excuse that the Raiders secondary wasn’t very good either, but neither is ours.

      2. Aren’t Foster and Armstong already being used on passing downs? They could blitz Bow when they can’t sub out or put him in a zone.

      3. It’s a costly loss, but to be honest, if Ray Ray were as familiar with this scheme as Malcom, I’d personally start Ray Ray over Malcolm, so for me, this injury hurts more in terms of depth, and experience, provided we don’t lose Bow, Armstrong or Foster.

        Grant, what is your opinion of the speedy rookie ILB out of Mizzou – Donavin Newsom? He led the Tigers in tackles last season, including 6 TFL, and 3 sacks. Do you see potential? He was the fastest pure ILB in this years draft class.

            1. I like the idea of a shock collar that infuses the tackler with a jolt of 5,000 volts whenever he misses a tackle.

              1. But that would run counter to Seb’s mounting focus on gentlemanly play and careful training—reduced CTE, falling down to avoid injury, getting rid of the ramp, etc. I know you were being facetious…

      4. there’s always free agency and the trade wire. plus you’re also forgetting ray ray Armstrong, whose very athletic

      5. I agree losing Smith is big but I think it’s more about veteran leadership and effort on the field. I think the 49ers will find ways around some of their liabilities on defense.

      6. Why couldn’t we have Ray Ray and Reuben in on passing downs, presuming we’re in nickel?

  5. So your saying the only reason Bowman makes the sqaud, is because Smith got hurt? L O Freaking L… Grant is a Riot!

  6. Grant, got another question. Which camp in your opinion is more physical, Harbaugh or Shanny?

      1. So that being said, with all those tackling sessions Harbaugh had, was there ever any season enders to starters the 1st years? Or were they just lucky?

          1. 2013 Training Camp… Culliver tears ACL, out for the year?

            “On his last rep, Culliver was working as a S/T gunner against rookie CB Marcus Cooper in a punt coverage drill, per Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area. It sounds as if Cully severely injured his left knee while running in a form of non-contact, since no collision was reported.”

        1. Not at the beginning of the season, but Cowboy was initially injured during a practice, Think Iupati blew him up.
          Ward had a foot issue even before TC, and I think Crabtree, too.

  7. “Shanahan has found better versions of a few players he had last season with the Falcons. ”

    But I’ll bet he surely wishes he was starting Matthews, Levitre, Mack, Chester, and Schraeder instead of Staley, Beadles, Kilgore, Fusco, and Brown.

  8. I’ll give you credit Grant for the news about bowman.I saw exactly what you saw Bo is going to be liability in pass defense. He was not even close to Hyde on that play. He looks slow and indecisive. Overall good report today…you stuck to the facts

  9. Garnett is very concerning, hate to lose an important piece for the future and now effects run game and pass. I do want at least one or two more years of high draft picks never at the cost of unfortunate injuries. Goodwin is exciting to watch as the team has been dull, good to see exciting players like him little and Joe Williams.

    1. Really bad to lose him, but there was little evidence that he was picking up the guard position technique and movement needed for this run scheme. He may have started the season as 3rd or 4th backup guard?

  10. “This pass defense could be one of the worst in the league”. FYI the pass defense last year was about average (ranked 14th)…with Brock as the CB1 and a pretty poor pass rush (ranked 23rd in sacks).

    1. It was average only because teams didn’t have to attempt passes to win games. They could gain just as many yards on running plays, and chewed up the clock more effectively doing so.

  11. While I don’t expect them to pull a Jets and intentionally tank this year just to win the Sam Darnold Lotto prize, another key injury or two and you have to ask yourself whether Lynch and Shanahan don’t begin to think strategically about positioning the team optimally for next year, in terms of the draft, free agency, and figuring out which players they want to extend and doing so early. Maybe they jump on any opportunities to trade away a player who doesn’t figure in to their long-term plans, when they can do so for their clear advantage (e.g., when a “future is now” contender sorely needs to replace a key injured player). Maybe they play and try to develop their rookies and second string players — which Baalke, Harbaugh, Tomsula, and Kelly never really did. Maybe they will sit a player with a minor injury longer than otherwise, if it lowers the risk of further injury.

    It’s not like they were going to contend for a playoff berth this year, and they do have six years to build a dynasty. Perhaps misfortune this year will actually position them more favorably to get there.

  12. If anybody cares – reported by Rotoworld:

    “Jets waived WR Bruce Ellington with a failed physical designation.
    Ellington isn’t fully recovered from his 2016 hamstring injury. He drew interest from multiple teams on waivers and should resurface when healthy. “

    1. Thought he looked injured if he could not get up to speed. At least Grant said he seemed lethargic.
      Thought the Niners needed to do an injury settlement before releasing him.
      Niners had depth, but that vanished in a puff of smoke.
      Bummer about Smith, but I wondered if the Niners were going to get the SB MS, or the Raider MS. Ray Ray is now a lock, and maybe Dekota Watson.
      Dang, Garnett going down will not help the O line. Wonder if Magnuson may get an opportunity as the backup guard.

  13. Hightower Seems like a veteran move. He’s one of Shannys guys & doesn’t want to expose him during camp. Smith was a bad signing to begin with & one of the few moves I did not like from Lynch this offseason. He’s like Larry Brown from cowboys MVP SB fame-one shining moment & fools gold for those that follow. Smith was terrible on the Raiders & there were better options, but it can’t all be easy after Baalke left the cubby bare.

  14. Grant, do you see them making a move to pick up another decent linebacker, possibly via trade?

    1. A few players may have some value in trades with the right teams. Staley, Hyde, VMac, Bowman, Reid. It would resemble baseball, where non-contenders will trade older stars and in return, often walk away with great prospects and future superstars. All because some contenders are willing to roll the dice and forego their futures if it gives them a chance at a ring this year.

      That’s what Dallas did, once upon a time, with Herschel Walker, and it gave them a dynasty within three years.

    2. cubus

      Why don’t we hold onto VMac and try to get some trade value out of Celek ? Is Norman Price getting any reps ?

      1. Well, it looks like attrition has set in, throughout the league. Niners have depth, so they have decent replacements. The silver lining is that there may be room to be able to poach players from the cut day.
        Niners should target 2 areas. They should look at players from playoff teams, and also players from teams who have pro bowl players at that position. Maybe the back up players are good, but just not good enough to beat out a pro bowl player for a starting job, and hence expendable because the team has different needs.
        Wow, Miami is so desperate, they are calling up Cutler. The Bear’s coaches sure had a chuckle.
        Hmm, Beathard looked like crap?
        But, but, he will beat out Barkley for the number 2 job….

      2. However, I was going to respond to your idea about keeping Vance and trading away Celek. Actually, I agree, because Vance will be almost impossible to move because of his contract, and Celek is a good blocker,but has not been known to make any big catches.
        Celek is expendable because the Niners like Hikutini. Price is a camp body.

  15. Grant,
    I can appreciate your enthusiasm over Hoyer this season, but aren’t you a little over exuberant with your 9 win prediction if he stays healthy?
    I mean, even if Hoyer puts up career type stats it likely won’t be enough to overcome some holes on the defensive side.
    Seems like our secondary gets beat at last 2-3 times a day. Either Hoyer is catching lighting in a bottle or our secondary is simply pitiful.
    We may see a repeat of the Steve DeBurg/Blaine Gabbert pattern: “Played well enough to lose.”
    If Hoyer is as good as his TC showing, I say 6 wins.

    1. I think Hoyer will turn into the 49ers version of Rich Gannon – a journeyman QB who lands in the spot and eventually takes his team to the playoffs.

  16. Other then injuries reports continue to remain positive. Still way early to make any judgements although the secondary remains a the biggest question mark.

    1. Agree the secondary is probably the most concerning position group at this point. That highlights exactly why Baalke is no longer with the team. If memory serves, I think Baalke had more picks than any other team in the NFL during his tenure as GM. Baalke used more picks on DB’s than any other position group. It’s a sad commentary on Baalke’s effectiveness that the team is struggling so much in the secondary. Hopefully a resurgent d-line will mask some of the issues the team will most likely have with pass defense this year.

  17. Grant, thoughts on C.J. Beathard today? Heard that he is seriously challenging Barkley for the number 2 QB position as he is starting to step it up.

  18. Wonder what Skov is doing these days. Maybe bring him back as a cookie for Seb (just kidding…). Seb did love his face paint.

      1. I imagine Lynch and his staff are always on top of player availability across the league–including FAs. Will be interesting to learn if they move on a LB and/or safety prior to the first preseason game.

    1. Ray Ray is likely a better LB than Smith if given the opportunity to play regularly, provides quality coverage. I would expect them to add some more depth, though, as the final cuts come in across the league.

  19. Grant,
    Do you really belive Garcon is better than Boldin was in his first year with the 9ers? If so Garcon is in line for a monster year.

    1. I’m not Grant but I would say it would be almost impossible to tell.
      The current DB’s and LB’s are so much worse than the ones Boldin had to face.

  20. So, Ray Wright’s “hill” was meant to prevent a lot of these leg injuries, wasn’t it? I’d say it’s time to level the steel mountain and Wright’s position with the team. Keep the free breakfasts though.

    McCaffrey would like to thank Navaroo Bowman for taking out possibly the only LB who could cover him. He’ll be sure to buy him a watch after he hangs 211 yards on SF.

    As for the run defense, it won’t amount to a hill of beans because the pass defense is so bad teams will run the ball only to run down the clock in the 2nd half. This pass defense is atrocious and only getting worse. The good news here is Hoyer will be in a shootout each week. The bad news is, it’s Hoyer in the shootout.

    1. Blah, Blah, Blah. The 49ers weren’t ever planning on using a MLB to cover McCaffrey., besides, both Foster and Armstrong are more athletic than Smith, IMO. In fact, I expected Smith to drop down the depth chart once Foster and Armstrong got comfortable in this system.

      Even average CB’s can look good when a team can consistently pressure the opposing QB, and Robinson is a budding star, as is our little nickle back – K’Wuan Williams. Our CB’s will be fine behind this front 7 provided they can get after the QB.

      So Wright’s “hill” injured Smith’s pectoralis major? Brilliant assessment Dr. Matt.

      Football is a rough sport Matt, maybe you’d be better off watching the PGA, Pro Bowling, or joining the local bridge club if you can’t handle the physicality of the NFL. Every NFL player is one play away from a season ending injury ….. it comes with the territory. It’s NEXT MAN UP in the NFL!

      1. In case you didn’t get the memo Matt, there’s no crying in football, and NFL football isn’t for the faint of heart. I suggest you take you tears, and a box of tissues and spend your next 24 Sundays renting chick flicks and having the girls over for slumber parties and pillow fights.

        1. Matt has been here for over ten years. So you think you are better then him or anyone else, got a clue for ya – you are not. If you don’t agree with someone state that but keep your childish comments to yourself or STFU.

            1. My bad. I assumed when someone acted like a child’s toy had been taken away from him when a team loses a starter in training camp, that maybe he’s not familiar with the physicality of the sport.

              As far as I can tell, if Garnett returns to action by week 1, which could very well be the case, the 49ers haven’t lost a single player yet this offseason to a season ending leg injury, aside from one obscure fringe player, who was never going to make the team. The Rams lost their veteran starting DE, and I haven’t seen many Rams fans complaining about their new strength and conditioning coach.

              Leg injuries are going to happen if your practicing hard, it’s simply part of the game. And if you aren’t practicing hard, what good are you anyhow? Unless teams aren’t using proper stretching exercises, or working their players into proper shape as a process throughout the offseason and into camp, serious leg injuries have more to do with luck, and the law of averages than anything else.

              I might buy into the notion that the ramp is a bad idea if players were getting hurt in the process of using the thing. Not simply because the team has suffered an average-to-slightly-above-average number of relatively minor lower leg injuries this far into training camp.

              The 49ers have had their share of injuries this offseason, but nothing out of the norm or alarmingly above the mean.. Look around the league and every team is dealing with nicked up players. If anything, we should be applauding this team for practicing hard, and using an appropriately cautious approach to holding key players out when rest is appropriate.

              And the idea that Malcom Smith was going to be our answer to defending McCaffrey is just plain dumb, IMO. Malcom Smith isn’t even our most athletic WILL and in fact, might actually be our 3rd best cover Weak Side Backer, behind Foster and Armstrong.

              Real men deal with injuries by gritting their teeth and looking for the next man to step up and fight. Crybabies look for scapegoats!

              1. Shanahan sat in his tidy office by the practice field, he wasn’t kicking up his feet on the desk, behind which is a bookcase with a commemorative, white football inscribed “20th Head Coach In San Francisco 49ers History.”

                “Don’t worry, I’m used to drama,” Shanahan said Friday. “I’m not going to get too comfortable. It’s a matter of time.”

                Adversity arrived Saturday.

                Malcolm Smith (51) suffered a season-ending pectoral tear Saturday and won’t line up this season next to fellow linebackers NaVorro Bowman (53) and Ray-Ray Armstrong (54) . Linebacker Malcolm Smith’s season-ending pectoral muscle is no doubt a blow, but idealist 49ers fans will say this was meant to be, that it sparks Reuben Foster’s coming-out party as their next great, homegrown linebacker.

                Losing their most expensive free agent – Smith, a $26.5 million man — before even the first exhibition normally might spell doom. This coming season feels different, and the positive vibes you’ve heard about are prevailing, for now. This is a team hell-bent on redemption, from embarrassed holdovers and undrafted rookies to a first-time head coach still reeling from the most brutal of Super Bowl defeats. New faces, new smiles abound at 4949 Marie P. DeBartolo Way. New competition fuels this roster.

      2. I understand you disagree with the idea that Smith would have covered McCaffrey out of the backfield, but I am pretty certain I specifically mentioned “leg injuries” when referencing the hill. Just incase you missed it, here it is again:

        So, Ray Wright’s “hill” was meant to prevent a lot of these leg injuries, wasn’t it?

        The leg injuries:
        Joshua Garnett -surgery required
        Jimmie Ward – hamstring out 2 weeks
        Keith Reaser -knee injury day to day
        Johnson- hamstring (cut)
        Ruben Foster- went down with a leg injury (returned but played with a light limp)
        HIghtower-undisclosed leg injury
        Eirc Reid _ankle injury day to day
        gilbert -acl tear (cut)
        Deforest Buckner-ankle injury day to day
        George Kittle- hamgstring

        Injuries certainly happen. My comment is that they haven’t been reduced by this iron hill, which was its selling point.

        1. As I understood it, the hill is meant to reduce hamstring injuries specifically. It’s barely been implemented, and so it’s too early to make that assumption and expect it to sell.

          1. Personally, I think it is dangerous. If no other team in the NFL has tried that ramp, there may be a good reason they have not used one.
            If one wants cardio workouts , the stairs in the stadium are just as good, and maybe even better. Slipping and falling on that ramp could cause serious injury.

              1. Actually, they are a lot more safe, because they have a flat level surface with a good non slip surface. OSHA approved.
                Slip and fall on the ramp and one would roll down it.

              2. Hah! Have you checked every stadium for OSHA compliance? Try running stadium stairs on the fourth or fifth pass…get up to rows 50+ and be careful you don’t clip a stair and fall on your face and break some bones. I’ve seen it happen more than once. You are a real gem Seb…

              3. Cassie, you obviously have never run up the ramp, and they instruct the players to cling to the hand rail and walk down it. KS warned his kids not to fall, because they might hurt themselves by rolling down it.
                Players have been running up and down the stadium steps for years, and if they are too clutsy to not fall down them, they should not be on them.

              4. Seb, you’re far removed from your personal experience base. Move on to another topic. Since Lynch reads your posts every day and follows your ‘guidance’ perfectly, I’m confident the ramp will be removed tonight, no?

                PS, I’ve run ramps too, and have come back down. I get the risk. I wasn’t a proponent of the 9ers ramp.

              5. Cassie, if they have a ramp that could pose a threat to a player’s knees, maybe they should not use it, and I hope it does not take an injury before they take it down.
                Since I wrote that Lynch should put on his Trade Bill hat, be aggressive and have fun, then see him do exactly that, I guess I do think he peruses the blog sites.
                The Niner organization is changing its culture, and the media department should be doing its job. If a good Idea is presented, they should accept it and consider it, unlike last few years, when I thought that they would look at my ideas, and do the exact opposite.
                I really hope they stop shooting themselves in the foot, making those unforced errors. Heck, they might even win more games if they reduce the number of mistakes. Of course, that would take preparation, focus and discipline, but so far, it looks like they are on that road to relevance.

              6. Seb… You’re getting lazy again, using your tired cliches. You can do better than ‘stop shooting themselves in the foot’ and ‘making unforced errors’.

                As you curl up with your binkie tonight and gaze at the florescent stars glued to your bedroom ceiling, rest assured that 9er staff are carefully considering your every word…

              7. Sebs………

                Lynch–a HOF–knows virtually everybody in the NFL–probably has forgotten more about football than we will ever know-and you think he peruses this itty bitty blog for ideas, for direction??
                You are either a) crazy
                b) a legend in your own mind
                c) messing with everybody

                I have always thought your messing with everybody, saying things you know to be ridiculous, and then getting yuks at everybodies response.

              8. Saw, if I were really serious, I would be flooding the Niners with emails. Since all I do is post on this site, if the Niners refuse to read my posts, it is their loss.
                These are just my opinions, and I just want to try and help the Niners get better, and win games. I am not demanding that they read these posts.
                However, when Lynch stated that he would consider every draft option, I took him at his word. When I advocated that Lynch should state publicly that the Niners are open for business and he would entertain every trade back proposal, then hear him say those exact words, I felt like he read every word I posted.
                When I surmised that the Niners should trade back, garner picks, and still get the player they coveted, then see them do exactly what I advocated, how can I not feel like they are channeling me.
                Maybe I was wrong when I advocated that Lynch should put on his Trader Bill hat, be aggressive and have fun. I should have said that Lynch should put on his Trader John hat, be aggressive and have fun.

            1. I used to run up and down my stairs with an Alice Pack of 20lb weights for 20 minutes. Then there was the time I tied a rope to a rimless old tire and secured it around my waist. I would run around the neighborhood block, and would soon have kids on bikes following me. Those were my young Rocky days of training. Now I just run on the treadmill;>)

              1. “road to relevance” the unreleased Hope/Crosby “Road movie” .

                “heck, they might even win more games if they reduce the number of mistakes”…. priceless…

                “I guess I do think he peruses the blog sites” (oh please, oh please, tell me it’s true)

          2. Could the ramp, sorry- hill (and stronger emphasis on conditioning overall) be reaction to gassing of Falcons — especially the D, during 2nd half of SB?

          3. I cant believe running up a hill causes or helps prevent injuries. Rice and Craig ran up hills for years and remained fairly healthy but I believe their health was owed more to the conditioning. The hill was merely a method of conditioning.

            1. It is the angle. Roger’s Hill was a long run, so the angle was not too steep. The ramp is set at 30 degrees, so it may be too steep to even walk down safely without a rail to cling to.
              Running down the ramp is downright dangerous. Sounds like they would run up and down Roger’s Hill.

        2. I hear what you are saying Matt, I do agree with Razor, a little early to judge the effects.

            1. Besides, Smith’s injury was pectoral muscle related. Fail to see how that would be a factor. My guess is just normal wear and tear from camp. OTAs didn’t have any significant injuries. Last year many were hurt for the season without a hill.

        3. Matt,
          Here is the actual reasoning given per Matt Barrows.

          Wright said the beauty of the steep incline is that players must exert full energy to climb to the top with gravity ensuring they don’t overdo it and pull a muscle. The angle also forces them into an ideal running motion.

          So it appears it’s not meant to prevent injuries overall just when players are doing sprint work.

    2. Relax. Injuries are a part of every training camp and there is no way to prevent them.
      As to the linebackers, the Seattle defense is primarily a zone scheme. So Bow will seldom be asked to stick with a rb.
      Understand that training camp is where they will be working on things and any drill that a db is asked to cover a wideout without any help he’s at a severe disadvantage. This is true across the board. Without knowing what they are working on its impossible to judge how good or bad the play was or how it will translate to a game

      1. Once again, well said Shoup! Injuries are an unfortunate aspect of the game, and if your going to be a good team, you’ve got to overcome them.

        NEXT MAN UP!

  21. Already expecting a lot of frustrating drives that are extended because the defense gives up the 1st on a 3rd and long pass after the run defense does it job on the first two downs.

    1. I’ll expect aggressive short/mid routes going after our DB’s centerield where YAC’s will happen early and often. The run game will be opened up by the quick strike stuff…Mc Caffrey’s tv debut/highlight reel?
      It could be many frustrating TD’s happening early & often. We might see both starting offenses in shootout mode early in the game.

    2. Coffee,
      That’s why I think 9 wins is crazy. No matter the schedule this team has a bad o line and terrible seb’s.
      It’s tough to win a shootout if you can’t control the clock or get the other team off the field.

        1. Some would say that Seb is a DB. Not that kind of DB…shame on you! One with quick hips.

  22. Grant Cohn‏ @grantcohn 2h2 hours ago
    Brian Hoyer was shaky during OTAs and minicamp, but he has been on fire since training camp began.
    Two words; red jersey.

    1. It’s amazing how much live action against top competition ruins a feel good story. Hoyer is a decent player, it’s why he’s lasted as long as he has, but expecting anything other than what he’s been – an average at best QB – is ignoring what he’s done in previous stops around the league. He should be a decent bridge to the next guy and that is what they need right now.

    1. I am positive the Niners will do better than last season. There, is that positive enough?

  23. Pass D will be fine if Ward can get back in time to get reps in this D. Robinson is a stud and they can piece together the second CB spot. Not worried about Witherspoon he’s a rookie. Beathard looked like crap today. Give Bow a break he’s not even a year removed from a major injury to that leg. He came back early and I think he deserves the benefit of the doubt and to assume he will be a liability in pass coverage without knowing how they will use him is stupid. Let’s wait until September or at least a year removed from that injury. It’s two bad because those injuries derailed and robbed him of a sure fire HOF track.

    1. We know what we have in Bowman. Not good in coverage, but good at everything else.


      “Bowman said he has been able to play more aggressively the more he understands the defense. That was on display in the first 11-on-11 drills Saturday when he hit Hyde and Kapri Bibbs in the backfield on the first two plays, recorded a “sack” on Hoyer on the third and then had a hard hit on Breida on the fourth.”

      Bowman will rarely be used in coverage once the season starts.

      1. You can tell that Grant has a built in bias that leans against Bowman and Hyde.
        That’s in evidence when he accentuates the negatives and ignores the positives.
        The RB will catch a lot of balls in this offense, yet there was no mention of the passes Hyde caught yesterday by Grant.

      2. In this case it’s really not a big deal at all. It was a 1 on 1 pass drill. In this situation the offensive player should have a huge advantage.
        He has no traffic to fight through, knows where he is going and should have a clean break with the benefit of the lb not having any help to try and rerout the offensive player to.
        The offensive player should win 90% of the time in this scenario.

  24. There are a lot of people panicking about the pass defense. Relax people. This team has not even played a preseason game yet.

  25. Hoyer and the first-team offense were foiled at the goal line earlier in practice when Carlos Hyde was stopped on two short runs, once by second-team nose tackle Quinton Dial. On third and goal, Hoyer’s pass was slightly behind tight end Vance McDonald who couldn’t secure the ball on his hip with Armstrong closing in.

    The best throw may have come from rookie C.J. Beathard, who lofted a pass down the sideline to well-covered running back Matt Breida. Breida dove and caught the ball with Pita Taumoepenu (He’s been asked to play strong-side linebacker this week) draped all over him. Beathard has gotten a little better with every practice, and Shanahan said he is pushing Matt Barkley for the No. 2 quarterback job.

    Funny how we never hear about these things…

    1. The pass defense. This has become the team’s biggest weakness. Today, the pass defense gave up 38 catches on 56 pass attempts – a completion percentage of 67.9. And the defense had a particularly difficult time defending play action.

    I wouldn’t necessarily jump on that bandwagon at this point.

    First of all, PA passing is (statistically) the most effective passing concept in the NFL and Shanahan uses it a lot. Generally speaking, the multi-year average QB rating off PA passing plays generally runs about 99.0 vs 83.0 for non-PA passing. It also runs higher in TD%, lower in INT%, longer in Yards/Attempt (about two-yards per attempt) and slightly higher in completion %.

    This is an older article on the subject: http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/18016573/why-nfl-teams-need-use-more-play-action But as you can see, it really makes a difference.

    And you’re probably not used to seeing that. After all, your career has spanned a lot of coaches whose offensive acumen was, at best, lacking if not out-right obsolete and incompetent. Nolan. Singletary. Harbaugh. Tomsula. Kelly. None of them were genius coaches. Not by a long shot.

    And I think that’s what you might be seeing. Not the bull**** dinosaur/college-junk offense Harbaugh ran. Not Kelly’s entirely simplistic read-option that depended on speed, not cleverness. And certainly not the dinosaur offenses under Tomsula, Nolan and Singletary.

  26. Last I heard Zach Orr was being hosted by the houston texans, curious if there was any word on him? Are other teams taking a pass on him due to his medical history? If he can pass medical clearance, would he be a viable option at LB for us?

    1. Man do they drone on. Had to rewind to listen a few times, because they seem to put me to sleep.

  27. They could always sign Mangold to play C for a season and move Zuttah to G.

  28. Former 49ers receiver Bruce Ellington, who was plagued by injuries in his first three NFL seasons, failed his physical with the New York Jets on Saturday.

    The Jets claimed Ellington off waivers after the 49ers cut ties with Ellington on Thursday. The Jets waived him with a failed physical designation upon his completion of an examination.

    Poor guy, he’s made out of glass.

  29. Grant,
    Besides Foster starting as a rookie, do you see any other rookies starting?
    I believe Williams, Taylor, Kittle and Thomas will receive significant playing time but except for Thomas won’t get a starting nod out of the gates.
    I hear Breida may get some snaps as well.
    This rookie class may be the foundation that carries the team back to relevance.

    1. “This rookie class may be the foundation that carries the team back to relevance.”

      Its looking that way. So far, by all early indications this is the best draft in a good many years.

        1. There is nothing absolute in my statement! I agree, need some games, is why I used the phrases, Its looking that way and by all early indications. Nothing there to indicate laurel wreaths.

          1. Didnt mean you UC, just a general warning before the thread became a rookie coronation!

    2. We’re gonna need another great rookie class in 2018 (guards- 2 or more to insure against negative Garnett outcome, a tackle or 2, and future center) to continue rebuild of Oline — relevance will need to wait till line can dominate in new run scheme and pass protect.

      1. tjf,
        Good point. I t will likely take a couple more drafts.
        But this draft class (at least going off TC reports) is creating a stir among many rookies.
        If most of them can make the roster, Lynch and Shanahan will be credited with turning this team around in their first draft. We can certainly build around players like Kittle, Williams, Foster, Taylor, Thomas, Breida and others.

  30. EC9,
    I agree. All we have to go on at the moment are reports from TC. But what we do know is that Baalke jacked up this team with his horrible drafts over the past few years.

    I’m looking forward to watching players like Thomas, Foster, Williams, Kittle, Hikutini, Breida, Witherspoon, DJ Jones, Taylor and CJB when he gets an opportunity.
    I can’t remember when was the last time I was this excited to see this many rookies play.
    Friday may give a glimpse of our future.

    1. Oh I agree AES, a lot to be excited about, but we need to see how everyone does against other competition. I like what Taylor is doing and it’s good to hear that Thomas is having a good camp. I still am somewhat reserved with my accolades as players look good without real game situations.

  31. Nice list Matt.

    A bunch of Grade 1 ankle sprains & Grade 1 hamstring strains, one knee that needs to get cleaned up (Garnett), and 2 serious leg injuries to guys who were nothing more than warm camp bodies.

    Sounds like a typical NFL lower body/leg injury list to me.

    How’s this for a list?

    The number of 49ers projected 1st and 2nd string players who will not be available on opening day due to leg injuries: 1 (LG Joshua Garnett, who could very well be ready for week 1)

    How about this list?

    The number of unproven players who may get an opportunity to step up and prove they have the chops to play in this league, who might not have been afforded the opportunity if these kinds of minor leg injuries never occurred: 3, 4, maybe 5?

  32. Hard to extrapolate too much about the TC practices. If the DBs are playing poorly, it may mean that the WRs are playing well. If the run game is struggling, it may mean that the run defense is getting better. Every play, there will be a winner and loser.
    Hard to quantify passes thrown and passes caught, and give assessments if the play continues after the pass rusher touches the QB.
    Yes, injuries occur, and they are unfortunate. However, the ramp may have nothing to do with injuries. On the other hand, even the HC does not want to run up it, because he thinks it looks dangerous.
    Glad Garnett’s injury does not look too bad, and he might be able to play this year. They say that Garnett was horrible last season, but maybe they should have played him at LG, his natural position. It also was a head scratcher to put 2 older veterans on the left side, but a first year player and rookie on the other side, last season.
    If the O line does not improve, look for another long season.

    1. Seb, am I being too hard on Matt?

      His quote:

      So, Ray Wright’s “hill” was meant to prevent a lot of these leg injuries, wasn’t it? I’d say it’s time to level the steel mountain and Wright’s position with the team. Keep the free breakfasts though.

      McCaffrey would like to thank Navaroo Bowman for taking out possibly the only LB who could cover him. He’ll be sure to buy him a watch after he hangs 211 yards on SF.

      My quote:

      Real men deal with injuries by gritting their teeth and looking for the next man to step up and fight. Crybabies look for scapegoats!

      If you had to judge these quotes, which one would you say sounds more like a victim’s mentality, and which one feels more like a fighter’s mentality to you? And if you knew nothing more about the authors of these quotes – than the quotes themselves, and had to chose which author to sit next to in the lower bowl of Levi’s Stadium during a 49ers game, who would you chose?

      1. 49, since I am used to having posters hurl expletives at me, your criticism is actually mild.
        I do not know Matt, but I must say that you are a passionate Niner fan, so I would probably choose you. Then we can get into a big debate about Conner Cook! ;p

      2. 49reasons, I am not sure what your infatuation with me is, but I am glad I gave you something you could find a passion in to respond as many times as you have. I don’t disagree with your assertions that next man up is the motto of the NFL and the injuries are common in all camps. As a fan, I hope that this team can avoid the injuries, and my discontent with the hill is pretty evident.
        It’s been a long off season and if I find fault in the conditioning coach’s hill, that’s just my opinion. I assure you, if you ever find yourself in the unenviable position of being in my care due to an emergency, you’ll find a fighter’s mentality. On a blog without consequences and a spot for opinion sharing, you will not. I commend you for your passion though.
        My passion is my work, football is a hobby. I enjoy reading your view points even when I don’t necessarily agree with you. Thank you for humoring me and my ideas.

        1. Tell me Matt …. are you a 49ER FAITHFUL?

          Because calling for the job of a hand picked, highly respected strength and conditioning coach 8 days into a new regime’s inaugural season, when there is as much optimism surrounding this storied franchise as there has been in years, simply because the team is experiencing standard levels of attrition, does not fit the definition of a faithful 49ers fan.

          So tell us ….. are you a fan of this team? Or are you simply misinformed?

          1. Are you truly a 49ers fan Matt, or are you simply looking for reasons to discourage those of us who bleed crimson and gold?

          2. Ray Wright- A highly respected strength and conditioning coach who was fired after 13 Redskins had season ending injuries in his final year? Prior to that he had 8 seasons on the Texan’s staff which only saw him as the head strength and conditioning coach the final year (team posted a 55-88 record during his tenure). In Washington, the team went 22-42 during his 4 year stint. He hasn’t worked since 2014.
            As a strength and conditioning coach, dating back to 2002, his players have made it to 1 playoff game in which they lost. That also corresponded with the only winning season he has seen in 2012.
            So, while he may be “respected” he has not been a part of any winning formula in 15 years of being part of the strength and conditioning program of an NFL team.
            If I question his methods it is because he hasn’t shown a proven track record of success. You may do better to question that same. As for hand picked, it could be he is the best option in the NFL. Or it could be that KS is comfortable with him and it is human nature to surround ourselves with familiarity. Neither of us knows the answer there. However, regardless of my opinion, the record speaks for itself. 13 season ending injuries to starters in 2014 and hasn’t worked since Kyle called him to work in SF. Respected perhaps, sought after? No.

            1. Ray Wright was one of the very first people Kyle called after being hired by the 49ers. Wright coached in Washington with Kyle Shanahan under his father between 2010-13. “The position of strength and conditioning coach demands a combination of youth and experience, and Ray delivers on both of those,” Coach Mike Shanahan said in a news release. “He has learned from some of the best in the business, and he has incorporated their teachings into his own philosophies. We expect him to bring out the most from our players, starting with their offseason conditioning and continuing through the entire season.”

              Eight days into his first training camp, and before the 49ers have played a single preseason game, Matt has decided that both Kyle and his father have shown poor judgement, and one of Kyle’s first hires with the 49ers was a big mistake, apparently, basing his opinion due to nothing more than a typical rash of injuries, and an artificial hill.

              1. 49 you remind me of our 14 year old son. Great kid. However, he loves to argue anything and everything. He doesn’t have to be right or even based in reality, but he will argue. We don’t dissuade him from this, and I don’t intend to dissuade you either. I merely walk away.

                Since you aren’t listening or comprehending, I will let you reply with the last word to this idea. My opinion is there to read. It’s an opinion much like your own.

  33. That braininess – a clever play call here, an usual design there – certainly has been on display so far in 49ers training camp. But so has something else: The first-time head coach is trying to build a bully.

    Practices in Santa Clara are as physical as they’ve been since Mike Singletary was the head coach. And they’ve been more grueling than those run by Chip Kelly

    “They have very similar approaches: When it’s time to work they want you to work. And when it’s time to hit, they want you to hit,” said tight end Logan Paulsen, who spent four seasons under Mike Shanahan in Washington where Kyle served as his offensive coordinator.

    Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/sports/nfl/san-francisco-49ers/article165699497.html#storylink=cpy

  34. C.J. Beathard has strung together some solid practices. Beathard has been sharing second-team snaps with Matt Barkley, a four-year veteran who hasn’t done enough to distance himself in the competition.
    “They’ve been competing,” Shanahan said. “I think they’ve had even reps. I think it’s a good battle for us. We’ve been looking at it every day and they’re going to make it tough on us.”
    Go CJ !


  35. The injury bug is going around.

    May be time for Shanny to tone down the ‘toughness’ routine and gear his practices toward KC, their 1st preseason game.
    Player analysis can continue, just without the daily banging. (Time to thing Reg. Season) !

    1. Oh great. TrollD, first you root for the Raiders, now you are rooting for the Giants to lose, to be ‘Rewarded’ by a high draft pick.
      Sounds like you are a Dodger fan.

      1. There’s nothing in his post that says he’s rooting for the Giants to lose. He linked a prospect round-up that included that blurb.

          1. So it does not matter if TrollD is just parroting things? Sounds like he was taking credit for Tim Patrick, but he was also just parroting away.
            Did not see those words in quotes, and yes, I never click on his articles.

    2. Anyone of the Top-5 would be great. There are two RHP (wicked 95+MPH starter stuff), one SS (5-tool), and two 5-tool OFers who can play all three spots. And, who knows, we may get some risers that are even better.

      1. Sounds great to me.

        SF’s strategy of drafting pitching and trade them down the road for hitting has failed for years, leaving them bereft of hitting prospects.

        I’d be happy with your 5-tool OF suggestion.

  36. Matt makes his early-camp 53-man roster: http://www.csnbayarea.com/49ers/49ers-2017-roster-projection-10

    I found these bits interesting:

    WR: Pierre Garçon, Marquise Goodwin, Jeremy Kerley, Aldrick Robinson, Trent Taylor. Aaron Burbridge

    The top five spots appear established. Burbridge wins his way onto the roster based on his strong showing on special teams. DeAndre Smelter, Victor Bolden, Kendrick Bourne and DeAndre Carter have shown enough to remain in the battle for spots on the roster and/or practice squad. Veteran Louis Murphy is playing catchup.

    I would have thought Smelter who is more talented/gifted and, I think, the biggest WR on the team.

    TIGHT END (3) George Kittle, Logan Paulsen, Cole Hikutini

    Vance McDonald is making a solid run at holding onto his spot with the team. Trade talks surrounding McDonald could begin again if Kittle gets healthy, remains healthy, and proves he is an every-down option. Paulsen and Hikutini could have specialized roles as a blocker and receiver, respectively. Garrett Celek and Blake Bell are in fights to hold onto their roster spots, too.

    Two rookies? Most coaches wouldn’t go that way so I figured Hikutini might be practice squad bound. So we shall see.

    1. I think Tim Patrick will make the 53 over Burbridge, because he is 4 inches taller, faster and has a vertical jump of 37.5″ compared to Burbridge’s 30.5″.
      Vance is essentially untradeable with his contract, so they should work hard on reducing his drops. If not for the drops, he would be a very good TE, and can create mismatches.
      I think they will carry 4 TEs, with Paulsen, Celek, Bell and Hikitini battling for 2 spots.

      1. I live in Utah and mentioned Patrick before you.

        Go Utes: Joe Williams + Tim Patrick + Pita Taumoepena = 9-7……………Go Niners Utes players !!!

  37. Lots of commentary about ‘the hill’.

    That’s what they have stairmasters for. (It’s the players choice).

      1. San Francisco 49ers‏Verified account

        Have a day, Matt Breida! #49ersCamp

  38. I’m not a fan of Malcom Smith and fully expected him to be dropped to a backup spot early in the season if not sooner, but it definitely makes it imperative they don’t lose anyone else. Depth was pretty good with Smith, now it’s thin. Hopefully Foster and Armstrong stay healthy.

    Not a big fan of Garnett either and they may actually be better without him with the way he’s playing right now. The downside is he needs all the reps he can get to try and improve and this is a big setback in that dept.

    1. I think Garnett’s injury all but guarantees he won’t be starting this year barring injury to another OL. And even then, wouldn’t be surprised if he is the 2nd interior OL backup, and not active on game days. A shame, I was hoping he would get a full TC under his belt and win a starting spot.

      Agree the ILB depth is now very thin. Wonder if they could make a trade for some decent depth? Maiocco suggested Dial might be decent trade bait, as he is probably an odd man out on the DL.

      1. I’m not sure I would consider the 49ers thin at ILB at this point Scooter, because I like Ray Ray Armstrong’s fit in this defense, and the 49ers were likely only going to keep 4 Inside Backers on the 53. The difference now is that Armstrong is in, and Smith is out for the season, but still under contract for the foreseeable future. Coyle, if healthy, was likely going to be the 4th ILB, because he’s such a stud on Special Teams. And, from what I hear, the 49ers brass is very high on Ray Ray Armstrong. He’s been playing very well this summer, and was off to a strong start last season before he was injured.

        Now we can place Smith on IR, hold onto Ray Ray, and hopefully stash Newsom on the PS. At the end of the day, barring anymore major injuries at this positions (WILL/MIKE) the only big difference is Armstrong doesn’t get away, and the team can place Smith on IR. It’s of my opinion that, aside from familiarity with this system, I am not convinced Smith is a vastly better player than Ray Ray. In fact, for me, it’s a coin toss. This would hurt a lot more if the team was hovering just under the salary cap this season, because Smith is going to cost a lot for a guy who will be standing on the sideline in sweats. The good news, if there is any, is that Smith’s injury won’t effect his ability next season, when the 49ers make a push for postseason action.

        1. Of course, this now depends on Foster’s shoulder holding up for the season, KNOCK ON WOOD!

      2. Maybe the Niners could trade Dial and Celek to the Bears for Nick Kwiatkowski.
        I wanted Baalke to draft him as an ILB last season, but Baalke thought there was no need to draft an ILB.
        Dial could reunite with Fangio, and the Bears have Zach Miller possibly injured.

    1. With this news, I’d think Sebbie will have a tidy collection of snarky remarks. Great material for conspiracy theorists.

        1. Using your standard Seb, no one wants to win–even the Patriots. No sign Kaep–no want win. Did I get that right Sebbie?

    1. Report: Dolphins would have taken Christian Ponder over Colin Kaepernick
      Me too.

      1. The name Kaepernick might rival that of Munson in the annuals of sports careers.

    1. RAW,
      All good, but not one these people have any FO pull on what happens to Hyde.
      I want to see Hyde have the same kind of fierce running prowess he had at OS, but if he starts dancing in the backfield ala Kevin Barlow of years past, Shanahan will not be happy.

    2. RAW,
      All good, but not one these people have any FO pull on what happens to Hyde.
      I want to see Hyde have the same kind of fierce running style he displayed at OS, but if he starts dancing in the backfield ala Kevin Barlow of years past, Shanahan will not be happy.
      Hyde also has another issue hanging over him, a history of injuries.
      I certainly want Hyde to have a breakout year, but one thing is certain and that is that Hightower and Williams will be in his rear view mirror.

  39. Here’s something I’ve been wondering about. As the OC for Atlanta, I believe KS called the games from the coaches’ booth high in the stands. This gave him a bird’s eye view of the field. But now he will be down on one side of the field, where he will not have nearly as good a view. I wonder if this will impact his ability to make adjustments to what the defenses are doing.

    1. He’ll curl up in the fetal position and drool… On a more serious note, I suspect those in the booth with offensive responsibilities will behave as professionals, I hope.

      Good question.

    2. Reasonable question. My first impulse is to think the answer is the classic one of commanders’ need to delegate. Requires trust in subordinates, but that’s always the deal.
      In this case Shanny may have to ask questions, but he can prearrange for a trusted booth guy to offer impressions freelance between plays.

        1. Right idea, but nah. He won’t be that institutionally involved. I’m thinking one post game and one pre game phone call per week.

            1. With today’s technology, what besides tradition makes it essential for the HC to be down on the field? Also, I’m not so sure we wouldn’t have been better off if Erickson, Nolan, Singletary, Tomsula and Kelly were somewhere else. For sure Harbaugh would have been needed to bang on Alex Smith’s shoulder pads before he went in though.

      1. It’s the time constraint between plays that will exacerbate the inevitable delay this might cause. KS will no longer have a direct data input to his brain for certain areas of the field. From the field, he’ll have to rely on Hoyer and others. With regards to the guys in the booth upstairs, will they know what KS looks for when evaluating adjustments? Maybe Lafleur would be a good candidate for the booth since he was an offensive assistant to KS for two years in Atlanta.

        1. That’s why I think he encourages bullet points in his ear to let the human nano-second process occur, maybe even not one voice. He gets a burst, develops the play and communicates it. I get your delay complaint (AHEM! Harbaugh!)

          1. If Shanny has to ask questions during time outs, his guys aren’t anticipating his needs. Under fire, you figure out who you can depend on.

  40. Found this interesting on Rotoworld. Wasn’t Grant really hot to trot for Smith during 2016 free agency?

    Raiders RCB Sean Smith’s first-team reps have declined in recent practices.
    Disappointing as a 2016 free agent investment, Smith has begun losing reps at outside cornerback to T.J. Carrie, who is now bookending LCB David Amerson with the first team. Smith worked as the second-team right corner in Friday and Saturday’s practices, then played nickel linebacker in the Raiders’ dime package in Sunday’s session. Smith is guaranteed $9.5 million in 2017.

  41. I am glad KS has scripted the first 15 plays. I also hope he can script scenario plays like second and short. Have a quick third down play already called so they can prevent the defense from substituting, and create mismatches. If the QB manages to draw the defense offsides, I hope they morph into a deep pass option for any free plays.
    Bully mentality? Maybe they need to win 3 games before they talk about that. I hope they cut back on the celebrations. Maybe let them have the TD celebrations, but maybe they need to win a couple games before strutting. Snow angels may have cost them a victory. Instead of first and goal from the 3, the Bears held them to a FG. A TD may have been a momentum builder.
    I hope the Niners act professional, and with class. Pointing fingers, and forearms to the face is not classy.
    I hope KS can hire an OC, and I would not mind if he hires his father. They have worked well together, and MS can give keen insights, proper assessments, and total support.
    OT, but relevant to changing the culture, they should discontinue the black Unis. They should go back to the Glory Year’s styles and colors.

  42. http://ninerswire.usatoday.com/2017/08/07/49ers-twitter-mailbag-can-c-j-beathard-win-backup-job-how-many-udfas-make-the-cut/

    Beathard has steadily run the offense and spaced out his glaring mistakes, which are good signs for an incoming rookie. He split time with Matt Barkley working with the second team and has been the more poised of the two for the bulk of training camp.

    Shanahan’s been forthcoming when speaking publicly about his team and where players stand in their respective competitions. He said Beathard earned a shot at competing with Barkley by digesting the offense well during the spring program. He built on that during the first week of training camp.

  43. Smith is the 49ers best LB in coverage? Lol he grades out horribly in pass coverage. Especially last year.

    This alone should prove Cohn does not have the qualifications for the job he has.

    1. Dude. Lamely catfishing our host shows you don’t even have the qualifications to respond on this blog.

    1. No 12 year old is hiring employees. I call shenanigans on that story.

      1. I believe it. Many immigrant’s children have a better handle on speaking English.
        Paraag’s story sounds like the American dream. Too bad he was painted as the leaker, but Baalke probably was the catalyst.
        Still think he got too much credit for the 49er’s rise in wealth. JH, and his 3 straight NFCC Games coincided with the rise in value. Imagine how much more the Niners would be worth now if there was more winning.
        I think Joe Montana had more to do with getting that stadium built, because Joe’s advocacy got voters to vote for it. Too bad they stabbed him in the back, and did not let him open that restaurant he was promised. If Jed had any class, he would buy out Joe’s condo in that sinking tower, and let Joe have a minority stake in a restaurant of his choice at Levi’s.
        Glad Paraag is no longer involved in the game management. Glad he acknowledged that he was just doing Lynch’s bidding during the draft.
        Paraag has been there 17 years and still no rings………

          1. I must admit that I was delighted that they ditched the ACL strategy in the draft, but now am concerned that they are picking up too many ACL FA players. Hightower, Murphy and others.

          2. Expect Seb to go off on Paraaag again in the near future–almost like clockwork.

            1. Sometimes I scream, sometimes I cry
              Sometimes I just lie in illusion
              Some nights I shake, some nights I sweat
              Some nights I’m just wet with confusion

              Don’t do this, don’t do that
              Don’t look back, you might stumble
              Don’t say yes, don’t say no
              Don’t let go, or your tumble down

              Some days I kick, some days I bite
              Some days I must fight the reaction
              Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose
              Sometimes I’m just bruised by the action
              Now you have the power to destroy
              Clockwork people just like clockwork toy
              Don’t try to tell me your fantasy
              It’s my life
              You try to tell me what’s right for me
              Turn the knife, twist the key

            2. Cassie

              Things have been a bit serene around Seb lately….when he runs out of Paraag, he can tune into the niners -Chiefs game on Friday nite…Jordan Devey is the 2nd team RG for ther Chiefs…

        1. ‘Too bad he was painted as the leaker, but Baalke probably was the catalyst.’

          Well, Baalke did have a very good agent in Seb who routinely pointed out Paraag was the leaker on his behalf. ?

      1. A pox on the chains. In the Saratoga-Cupertino area, back in the day Florentines made the best pizza.

        1. We’ve got a great authentic pizzeria that’s been in our town since I was a kid. Greg Volcano started it, and he gave me my first 50 cent piece when I was little. Still the best pizza around. Take a look:


          Their crust is the bomb. Nothing compares to their sausage either. Not sure if he was Florentine, but my family is from Catania. Last name is Cataldo. I’ve been told it’s like Smith over here, down there….

        2. I remember when Mary was alive. Went there in a big party with her niece.
          Mary goes-‘ Now you are not smoking that ‘Mary Ju Juana’ any more, right?’
          Her niece replied- ‘Oh, no Auntie.’ Just after we smoked a joint before we walked in. I think she runs one of the Mary’s, now. It is a family business.

  44. Our RB’s and FB combined will have over 100 receptions this season with our top receiver pulling in around 65.

  45. Mahomes should have a good first showing, he’s only facing our secondary so not too much of a challenge there.

      1. Pat will be running with the 3’s so I’m not sure Tyreek will still be out there with him. More of a battle of the bastards by that point in a preseason game.

          1. Inglorious will likely be a good description for what we see in the third and fourth quarter of this game.

  46. Lol, if nothing else Cutler is good for a laugh every now and then: “The good thing is I play quarterback so I don’t have to be in that great cardiovascular shape,”

    Funny, I thought QB’s were supposed to have bulging biceps and run like gazelles.

  47. Trent gets another opportunity to provide Seb with another excuse by stabbing Kap in the back.
    Meanwhile, the tag-team match becomes serious when Kap’s girlfriend slugs him in the knee with a tire iron.

    Too bad Seb will never admit that the 3 QBs in camp run the WCO better, or Shanny would have hired him.

  48. Mindi Bach‏ @MBachNBCS 46m46 minutes ago
    Reuben Foster running at the Will with the starters today in full team drills.

  49. Seb picked Kap as our QB of the future, now he’s been on the ‘Barkley Bandwagon’ from the get go.
    Seb’s Kap miscalculation for the last 3 years should tell you all you need to know about his QB acumen…….Fans, just say no to Seb’s Barkley infatuation and sticking the 49ers with another 5 year loss because he predicted Barkley would beat out Hoyer.

    “The bad news is Barkley has been something of an interception machine during training camp, And according to KNBR 680’s Kevin Jones, Barkley has found himself demoted to the third-string unit.”

    “Barkley’s turn against the third-team defense did not go as smoothly, including one errant throw where no receiver was within 15 yards. From the outside looking in, Kyle Shanahan’s playbook appears to be challenging Barkley mentally.”


  50. Kevin Jones‏Verified account @Mr_KevinJones
    “Breida had a 1st team rep on Mon.”

    Interesting. Is Breida ahead of Williams in the pecking order?

    Kevin Jones‏Verified account @Mr_KevinJones 4m4 minutes ago
    “Kyle Shanahan benched the second-unit in the middle of practice for multiple false start/offsides penalties. Rarely see him that pissed off.”

    Kevin Jones‏Verified account @Mr_KevinJones 4m4 minutes ago
    “Foster had tight coverage on TEs. He did not look out of place.”

  51. Quote of the day.

    Eric Branch‏ @Eric_Branch 3m3 minutes ago
    #49ers DC Robert Saleh on preseason opener: “I can’t wait to see the violence with which we play.”

    1. Oh dear… Will Saleh ask his defense to pound ball carriers if the ball carriers fall to the ground per Seb’s dictate?

  52. Eric Branch @Eric_Branch
    Reuben Foster took the first-team snaps today ahead of Ray-Ray Armstrong; C Tim Barnes took a few snaps — his first — with starters #49ers

    Have to say the biggest surprise for me is that Zuttah hasn’t locked down the center position. I thought for sure he would be the guy.

    1. Same here. Looks like one of those 2nd rounders next year will need to go for Billy Price. He’ll break Fickell’s 50 consecutive starts record this year.

  53. Grant Cohn‏ @grantcohn 5s5 seconds ago
    “Carlos Hyde gained 37 yards on 8 carries today.”

    That’s 4.6 YPC if my math is correct.

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