Day 8: The good and not so good from training camp

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo passes during NFL football practice at the team’s headquarters Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

SANTA CLARA – Here’s who stood out during the sixth padded practice of training camp.

THE GOOD

1. TE George Kittle. Jimmy Garoppolo’s favorite target throughout training camp. Caught five passes from Garoppolo today: Two 15-yarders, a 16-yarder, a 19-yarder and a 30-yard touchdown pass. Kittle seems healthier and faster than last year, and hasn’t dropped a pass during training camp. He should have a good season.

2. DT DeForest Buckner. Beat starting left guard Laken Tomlinson easily all morning. Beat him for a sack early on, then beat him later for a quick quarterback pressure and forced Garoppolo to make a bad throw, which cornerback Greg Mabin picked off. Buckner is the most underrated player in the NFL and the Bay Area.

3. DT Sheldon Day. Played with the second-team defense and recorded a tackle for loss and a sack. Currently the second-best interior rusher on the 49ers. More consistent than Solomon Thomas.

4. DT Jullian Taylor. The most impressive rookie of the 49ers so far. Manhandled fellow rookie Mike McGlinchey on outside zone runs to the offense’s right. Knocked McGlinchey into the backfield.

5. WR Richie James. Caught a 20-yard pass over the middle from C.J. Beathard, and a 40-yard touchdown pass over the middle from Nick Mullens. Also was the slot receiver for the first-team offense during the final portion of practice.

THE NOT SO GOOD

1. CB Richard Sherman. Gave up a 65-yard touchdown catch to Pierre Garcon five minutes into practice, and left shortly after with a pulled hamstring. How has Sherman benefited from this training camp? Serious question.

2. LB Reuben Foster. Let a pass from Jimmy Garoppolo fly through his hands and land in Kittle’s grasp. Has not caused a turnover during training camp.

3. DE Cassius Marsh. Injured his right groin muscle and left practice early.

4. WR Dante Pettis. Injured his groin on Thursday. The 49ers did not let him practice today.

5. RG Joshua Garnett. Missed his sixth day in a row with a knee injury the 49ers initially described as a contusion. Garnett had a second opinion on the injury, and apparently doesn’t need surgery. No word on when he will return to the practice field.

6. LG Laken Tomlinson. Gave up a sack to Earl Mitchell during team drills. Has not played well the past four practices.

7. C Weston Richburg. Failed to execute a reach block on nose tackle Earl Mitchell during an outside zone run to the left. Mitchell burst into the backfield and tackled Matt Breida for a four-yard loss.

8. The run game. The starting offensive line created no holes for the running backs. Jerick McKinnon rushed four times for negative 10 yards, and Breida rushed five times for one yard.

9. Focus and discipline. The 49ers committed three penalties during the first team period of the morning. Kyle Shanahan stopped practice, brought the team together and told them to lock in. And they did the rest of the morning. The 49ers had the same issues last year during training camp, and those issues carried over to the preseason and the regular season.

10. Clock management. Failed to even attempt a field goal during the final team period of practice. The offense started at its 25-yard line with 1:05 left, trailing 28-27, drove all the way to the defense’s 32-yard line and was in field-goal range. On third-and-2 with 20 seconds left, the offense decided to go for the first down. Garoppolo threw a pass behind Breida in the flat, a pass Breida should have let fall incomplete. But, he spun and dove and caught the ball for a three-yard loss, the clock ran out and the offense lost.

This article has 52 Comments

  1. The only “not so good” posts that concern me are injuries and they seem to be adding up. After a couple of years where the 9ers seemed to have nothing but bad luck on the injury front I was hoping for some good luck this year….. Guess I should just keep hoping.

  2. I’d say the 9ers are growing weary of beating on each other and would like to pound on some other colors–let’s fast forward to the Dallas game.

  3. # 9 Pre snap penalties’ are nothing, new, been a problem for three years or so. Niners committed 45 pre snaps last year totaling a possible 225 yards, not to mention nullifying positive plays from both the offense and defense. Hard enough to beat the opposition without having to beat yourself too.

  4. Mr. Grant Cohn:
    Check your comment about Reuben Foster: “Let a pass from Jimmy Garopolo fly threw his hands…” Threw is the past tense of the verb throw. Through is an adverb and a preposition.

    1. Grant is usually way ahead of most sports writers in grammar efficiency. He knows the difference between who and whom, for one example, and many do not. Another – less and fewer, drives me nuts. All the sudden, try and do something… now you’ve got me going…

        1. I personally believe what is said is more important than how it is said. Making a mistake on one word that everyone with a brain could figure out what was meant is no big deal. Now if the incorrect grammer causes confusion in meaning that is entirely different. But pointing out threw instead of through is pure nit picking to bolster the picker ego.

  5. 1. TE George Kittle. You’ve always been high on him. Good call.

    4. DT Jullian Taylor. It’s early, but he looks like a steal.

    5. WR Richie James. It’s early, but he looks like a steal.

    1. CB Richard Sherman. I was one of the few people that was worried about the Sherm signing. I hope you and I were wrong.

    5. RG Joshua Garnett. He’ll be gone by this time next week. Hope we can get a 6th or 7th for him.

    Question: How have they looked in the RZ so far in camp?

      1. Grant: Since the starting OL is now wowing in TC, could you maybe keep a closer watch on Darrell Williams. Thanks.

    1. 5. RG Joshua Garnett. He’ll be gone by this time next week. Hope we can get a 6th or 7th for him.

      I doubt that will occur unless Cooper takes some monumental steps in a week’s time.

  6. To many injuries in camp. Next year in camp 3 pads and walk through then 3 days of pads. Keep the players healthy.

    1. Why? The Faithful would be complaining/worrying about a rookie in his first camp regardless of what happened at the coin flip ceremony which decided the pick order for the 49ers and Raiders.

  7. Any predictions for the Cowboys game? Score? Positives? Negatives?

    I’m thinking 24/22 9ers. Special teams will save the day. The OL opens some holes for decent rush yards.

  8. Why does it seem like every writer for bleacher report talks about Sherman being beat by speedy receivers as if Sherman has been known for his speed…him getting burned by Goodwin means nothing because every team doesn’t have receivers with sprinter speed on their team…I went to the camp this past sunday and seen Sherman cover Garcon pretty good so how about we wait to the season starts against other teams and stop putting so much stock into training camp.

  9. Watching the ’98 Wildcard win over Green Bay got me thinking….Dwight Clark had The Catch, John Taylor capped The Drive, Terrell Owens had the catch to beat GB, Vernon Davis the catch against New Orleans.

    Jerry Rice is the greatest of all time, but what was his one huge play? Week 2 of ’88 to beat the Giants?

      1. It’s not in that montage, but I’m going with his TD down the left sideline at the end of the first half in the 94 NFCCG against Dallas. Put that game away for all intents and purposes.

    1. Many receivers total less than 197 catches in their career. Rice had 197 TD catches.
      .
      Other than being inducted into the Football HOF, being named Super Bowl MVP may have been his highest achievement. The catch that won the game against the Bengals with no time on the clock is my favorite, because it caused Bill Walsh to skip off the field.

        1. No, it was in 1987. It was in one of the Jerry Rice highlights that 80 so kindly posted.
          .
          Bengals had 8 seconds left on the clock, so they ran a sweep, thinking to run out the clock. Too bad for them, Kevin Fagan tackled the runner quickly, and there still were 2 seconds on the clock.
          .
          Montana then heaved the ball into the end zone, and Jerry Rice caught a TD pass, and the extra point gave the Niners a victory. Walsh did not mean to rub it in, but he did skip a few times. Wyche got schooled by his master.

    2. The 27 yard reception on the final drive of the SB against the Bengals. It came after a penalty and Rice got 10 yards or more after the catch.

            1. Jerry Rice is the greatest of all time, but what was his one huge play? 

              Every catch in a game….the fear of playing the GOAT was greater than one catch..

    3. It’s not on YouTube or I would post the link, but I think that his catch against the Bears in the 1988 NFC Championship game was the biggest of his career. He scored a TD to make it 7-0 and it set the tone for the game. The 49ers were 10-6 and the Bears were 13-3 during the regular season. The Bears and their fans thought that this game was going to be a walk. A California team going to Soldier Field in the dead of winter. Final 28-3, 49ers!

      1. That was a good play. That play was also a good reminder to keep your head up and see what you’re hitting. Poor #44.

    4. For me, it was the 1987 regular season game against the Bengals with the last minute touch down off a hail Mary pass from Joe after horrible clock management by Wyche which gave us the chance (the Bengals should have taken a safety).

      It sticks out particularly for me because I was 11 years old, and for reasons I don’t recall now, my mom had to go to the hospital. My mom is a huge 49er fan, and she had been wanting to watch the game before going to the ER (clearly not too pressing a medical emergency). But instead of watching the whole game, she left at half time because the 49ers had been playing so poorly, so I was left to watch the game alone. I remember thinking we always had a chance with Joe, and Jerry was just coming into his own as the GOAT, and jumping up and down with joy by myself when he caught the pass. To this day, I still give my mom rations of crap for giving up on the game. I will have to ask her why she went to the hospital so I can tell this story more fully in the future.

      1. I also think his play as a blocker on Taylor’s crazy day against the Rams is a good one to remember Jerry by. He is the GOAT because of the catches, and yards, and touchdowns, but also because he was the best route runner in history and one of the best blocking WRs as well (again, if not the best). It’s really amazing a player like Rice ran almost the length of the field blocking for JT on those two plays, so fierce was his competitive drive.

  10. Grant, I really love these daily reports. I am always waiting for this time of the off-season where we get to see from your eyes and your gut-takes everything happening during training camp. Very fun, indeed. Please keep up the good work.

  11. Here’s the mystery. Every year the narrative is “what will 9ers do to rush the passer?”

    but all they do is draft or sign DL’s that are supposed to Rush The Passer.

    OR they let them go un-signed.

    What up?

  12. The Official Grant Cohn Offensive Line Good/Not So Good Tracker

    Offensive Line
    Day 1: Good -0 // Not So Good – 0
    Day 2: Good -0 // Not So Good – 1
    Day 3: Good -1 // Not So Good – 2
    Day 4: Good -1 // Not So Good – 1
    Day 5: Good -0 // Not So Good – 5
    Day 6: Good -0 // Not So Good – 3
    Day 7: Good -0 // Not So Good – 3
    Day 8: Good -0 // Not So Good – 3

    Total: Good -2 // Not So Good – 18

    49ers potentially have a problem at both Guard spots. Weird how that just seems to have crept up out of nowhere.

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