Jim Tomsula on RB Kendall Hunter: “Wasn’t he moving around really well? You know, it was great to see.”

Here is the transcript of head coach Jim Tomsula’s Wednesday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ P.R. department.

Opening comments:

“The injury report; [FB] Bruce Miller is with us, we excused him today. And then injury summary; [LB Philip] Wheeler, [LB Desmond] Bishop, obviously, I told you, he stayed back. Wheeler, [S Craig] Dahl and [TE Vance] McDonald didn’t practice. Everybody else was in and went.”


Is Miller an injury thing?

“No. He’s a personal thing. He’s good.”


What’s the outlook for Vance? Do you know how many weeks he might be out?

“No. Obviously, what we want is we want him to be at full speed with nothing grabbing at him when we start the season. So, playing that by ear.”


You had mentioned the other day the altitude, how you were eager to see how the team would adjust. What was your take on that? How did they adjust to it?

“I liked it. They all felt it, but they kept going right through it and we stayed on tempo. We stayed on time. I was really happy with the guys with the way they handled it. It’s for real. I mean, anybody who says it isn’t, we all feel it. It’s for real. So, getting able to blow the lungs with that today, another day tomorrow with it, moving fast. Real happy with the team that way and happy we’re here going through that.”


When you have your team practicing on two fields, how do you balance what you wanted to watch? What did you want to see today?

“Well, obviously, missed some things, you know. I wanted to see us stay on time, you know, and obviously, when you’re looking at another team and the different players and the matching up in some of the one-on-one stuff, so I wanted to take a look at that. We’re also working through combinations, so seeing how people are doing with combinations.”


What did you see from C Marcus Martin at center and OL Ian Silberman at right guard?

“Some good things. There were some things there where we’ve got to get shored up in the protection there in the one period. We’ve got to get that shored up. But, overall alright. I thought it was alright, I did. We’ll see where Ian’s at. Again, I hate to cliché of getting to the film, but I honestly didn’t see everything. So, I want to get back and watch that before I say anything.”


Did you kind of like that your offense was moving at such a quick pace and the other, they were still going for several minutes on the other field just to catch up?

“Yeah, I mean, I didn’t pay a lot of, I’m worried about us. And look, this is a great organization and they’re obviously a terrific football team and they practiced the way they practice. I appreciate the fact that [Denver head coach] coach [Gary] Kubiak, they practiced the way they practice and we practiced the way we practice. So, I don’t know that we’re talking right or wrong. I think we’re talking apples and oranges.”


Did you get a chance to see S Antoine Bethea’s interception or did you see TE Garrett Celek’s touchdown catch?

“I saw Celek’s touchdown and the backend of Bethea’s.”


Doing the joint practices like this, does it kind of help break up the monotony of camp and going forward and getting this close to the regular season?

“I think when you get to see what happened today, I think that’s awesome. I think that’s, to me, I would take that tape and say, ‘That’s what you would want this to look like.’ It was two teams, a bunch of professional athletes out there, working like crazy against each other, competing and having fun and going about their business. I thought it was tremendous by both teams.”


How did you keep it from getting crazy and out of hand?

“Didn’t have to. To me, you’ve got to put that back to, again, I think I can’t say enough about this organization. You know how I feel about our organization, but it goes back to the players on the field. I think it speaks volumes to the guys.”


Do you have a stance about injuries and starting jobs? That if you’re a starter and you have an injury, you don’t lose the–?

“No sir. I stay out of that murky water. I think that’s all individually based.”


So, but we see LB Michael Wilhoite–?

“So you’re going with Wilhoite? Wilhoite I wanted back in, in that unit and I wanted to see where he was at. I want to see what he’s doing.”


Is he competing with LB Nick Moody for that starting job or is it his job?

“Listen, everybody’s competing. Michael’s just gotten back so I don’t want to get into any comparisons on anything. But, Michael, what I know and what I know on tape and what I’ve been watching on tape, Michael needed to go right back to where he was and Michael needed to be playing. So, that’s, it’s all on an individual basis.”


And how does he look these first two practices?

“It looks like he’s running pretty well, you know what I mean? And Michael’s a smart player, so assignment-wise, there is always a little clean up when you come back.”


For those of us in Denver, are you surprised by the attention a rugby player’s getting for your team?

“No, I don’t think I’m surprised. I’m not surprised. I just, you know what? It’s a lot of fun, and I hope people are having a lot of fun with it, I get that part of it. But, from the perspective of the team, the perspective of him, I’d like to keep that, let’s just keep that on the outside and everybody go have fun with what they need to have fun with, but he’s in a real-life situation right here. Let’s just stay focused on that and we’re just not going to let that into our world.”


RB Kendall Hunter was taking some snaps back there with the first unit. How’s he coming along?

“Wasn’t he moving around really well? You know, it was great to see.”


You’re the coach, I don’t know.

“Yeah, well, I mean, you all can see him run. You see him move, the burst and all that stuff. Felt really good for Kendall. You know, and he’s been doing those things, but we wanted to get to this point here and then get him some more reps and get moving a little bit here.”

This article has 25 Comments

  1. Eric Branch – Santa Clara County D.A. has charged 49er Ahmad Brooks with sexual battery.

      1. Brooks was not indited only charged. I would wait for farther evidence to come out in respect to Brooks’s charge. Just picking up a limp unconsious person might be interpreted as sexual battery. Not saying that is the case, but it might just constitute an attorney just adding another name to a potential future lawsuit.

      1. And probably Rush as well, right. If Brooks is gone, we only have Lynch, Harold, Lemonnier, and Rush. Oh, and I guess Beauharnais as well.

      2. Eli Harold to start? I like him as a pass rusher. Not thrilled with his ability to set the edge.

      3. Scooter: Do you think there is anyone on the DL, which is very deep, that could be moved to OLB?

          1. That might be tough since he’s already starting at CB and RG. But if anybody can do it, it’s Okoye.

          2. You know, I thought about Okoye, Razor. What makes you think he could be moved to that position. I know he’s unusually fast for his size.

  2. Dare I say it, but it seems that our defense might be more suited to a 4-3 than a 3-4, given the losses at OLB.

    1. They only use 3-4 OLBs on around 50% of downs anyway. Rest of the time they are lined up as DEs in the 4-man front.

      1. Just so I’m clear – that includes players we traditionally consider to be OLBs but they are playing with their hands in the dirt, thus showing a 4-man front, correct?

        1. I mean that guys like Aldon, Brooks and Lynch move to DEs in the 4-man front, which the 49ers play a lot of.

  3. Hey guys, here is a link to a really great article (I would argue essential reading) by Mike Tanier, NFL National Lead Writer for Bleacher Report. It’s a Sports Science based article and the topic is Preseason ACL injuries and how they can be drastically reduced. I thought it was particularly relevant in relation to Kendall Hunter, and the 49ERS new coaching regime’s approach to limiting injuries during training camp and preseason this year. The 49ers appear to be ahead of the curve in terms of biomechanics with the way they are using a scientific approach and “easing” their players into physical shape this year. I thinks it’s worth noting, KNOCK ON WOOD, Tomsula and his training staff are using a scientific approach and the results seem to be dramatic when you consider the amount of injuries the team sustained during Harbaugh’s tenure.


      1. Thanks for sharing. I thought that was a really good article. When I hear Tomsula talking about players’ availability to practice or play, I hear things that make me think SF is at least partially on board with this progressive approach.
        I was also interested in the injury stats since it had seemed to me that there were more camp injuries under the new CBA, but it’s good to have the numbers.

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