The 49ers held their first of two mandatory veteran mini-camp practices Tuesday morning. Here is what stood out.
This was by far the best Lance has looked during the three offseason practices open to the media. Lance finished the day 9-14 with three touchdowns.
During a redzone seven-on-seven session Lance hit on three of five attempts. All three of Lance’s completions resulted in touchdowns, the best coming when he hit Jauan Jennings in the back left corner of the endzone.
Team drills started a bit rough for Lance.
On the first play, Lance dropped back after play action and had rookie Cameron Latu open on a deep over route, but the throw came up short. On the next play, Lance’s throw off boot action to Ray Ray McCloud was broken up by cornerback A,J. Parker.
Lance was nearly perfect the rest of the way, connecting on six of his final seven throws.
After a pair of checkdown throws, Lance ripped a deep out to Ray Ray McCloud along the right sideline.
Lance’s final three throws of the day were a completion to Brandon Aiyuk on a dig route off play action, a deep in route to Danny Gray which he layered over the underneath linebackers and a throw up the seam to McCloud in front of rookie Ji’Ayir Brown.
Darnold’s day featured a strong start and finish with a dip in the middle. The veteran quarterback finished the practice 8-12.
Taking reps with the first unit Darnold completed four of five attempts with two touchdowns during a redzone seven-on-seven session. The only incompletion for Darnold was a drop from Danny Gray in the endzone.
On the first play of team drills, Darnold good coverage downfield and pressure from the defensive line forced the quarterback out to his right where he connected with Christian McCaffrey for a gain of five.
The next play nearly produced the first interception by either quarterback during offseason practices open to the media.
Working off play action, Darnold tried to fit the ball in to Brandon Aiyuk who was running an in route. However, cornerback Deommodore Lenoir had good positioning on the wide receiver. Lenoir got both hands on the ball but was not able to hold on.
Darnold finished practice with a pair of nice throws.
First was a deep ball down the left sideline to Brandon Aiyuk. The throw came up short, but Aiyuk was able to bring it in for a gain of about 35 yards.
Darnold followed the deep completion by finding Danny Gray on a crossing route for another big gain.
Allen came into today’s practice without an incompletion in front of the media. He missed both of his first two throws before getting back on track and hitting the final four.
Aiyuk caught three of four targets, including a touchdown from Sam Darnold.
The fourth year wideout has been impressive throughout offseason workouts, prompting Deebo Samuel to say, “you can’t cover him (Aiyuk) in a phone booth right now.”
In addition to the touchdown, Aiyuk reeled in a deep ball from Darnold down the left sideline. He also made a big gain on a throw over the middle from Lance, making Ji’Ayir Brown miss with a nice shake after the catch.
Gray opened practice by dropping a Sam Darnold pass in the endzone.
The second-year receiver shook off the rough start by beating Deommodore Lenoir across the field for a big gain on a completion from Darnold.
Gray wasn’t done there. Late in practice Trey Lance hit him on a deep in route and Gray sprinted past the safety untouched for a big gain.
Lenoir has looked strong during offseason practices. Today the third-year cornerback was all over Brandon Aiyuk on a route across the middle. Lenoir was able to undercut Aiyuk and nearly came away with an interception.
Burks is proving he is more than just a special teams ace.
Today the linebacker was able to break up a pair of underneath throws from Sam Darnold intended for Christian McCaffrey and rookie Brayden Willis.
The rookie third round pick has not made a play on the ball in any of the three practices open to the media.
During one stretch today, Trey Lance completed three passes in a row in front of Brown. On two of those Brown was unable to even get a hand on the wide receiver after the catch.
The undrafted free agent defensive tackle from North Dakota State continues to impress. Today saw Waege get down the line of scrimmage on an outside zone run and be in position to make the tackle on Jordan Mason.
Mason showed what he was capable of in the running game as a rookie. While he has continued to look strong as a runner, Mason has been able to show off his hands during OTAs and he did it again today.
The second year back hauled in a pair of throws from Sam Darnold in the redzone, the second coming in the left flat resulting in a touchdown.
With Javon Hargrave not participating in team drills, Givens continues to work with the first unit. Today the veteran defensive tackle held up well in the run game, stopping Mason on a run up the middle.
Womack was beaten by Ray Ray McCloud for a completion on a deep out, but rebounded nicely on the next play when he forced an incompletion on a deep throw down the right sideline from Lance to Ronnie Bell.
Earlier in practice, Womack showed good speed when he was able to run down Cameron Latu on a deep crossing route.
A.J. Parker and D’Shawn Jamison
Parker and Jamison were each able to record a pass break up. Parker’s coming on a throw from Lance in the right flat, while Jamison’s was on a throw from Brandon Allen to Willie Snead.
The running back missed practice for the second week in a row. According to Kyle Shanahan the veteran is “working through something.”
Not a good sign for a player who has missed significant time with injury during his first two NFL seasons.
The All-Pro defensive end was at the 49ers facility, but he did not participate in practice. Speaking to the local media, Bosa said he is confident a new contract will be in place prior to training camp.
Samuel went through the individual portion of practice before working on the side during team drills.
The veteran wide receiver spoke with the media following practice and classified his performance last season as “awful, in every aspect.” Samuel said the distractions of last offseason got him off his normal routine, leading to the poor performance.
The 49ers prize addition in free agency made his on-field debut in front of the media. Like Samuel, Hargrave went through only the individual portion of practice.
Nick Bosa said after practice that Hargrave is a huge addition to a defense which saw a revolving door on the defensive interior due to injuries.