The good and not so good from 49ers training camp: Day 6

San Francisco 49ers’ Jason Verrett (2) jogs at the team’s NFL football training camp in Santa Clara, Calif., Monday, July 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

SANTA CLARA – Here’s who stood out during Friday’s training camp practice.

THE GOOD

  1. QB Jimmy Garoppolo. Played well for the second practice in a row. Completed 8 of 14 attempts and threw beautiful downfield passes into tight windows, including a 15-yarder to Dante Pettis, a 15-yarder to Jordan Matthews, a 15-yarder to Kendrick Bourne, a 15-yarder to Trent Taylor and a 15-yarder to Ross Dwelley. Garoppolo looked poised and decisive, just like he did in 2017. Keep in mind, DeForest Buckner and Dee Ford have missed the past two practices. When they have played, Garoppolo has struggled.
  2. QB C.J. Beathard. Played with the second-team offense and completed 10 of 12 passes – by far his best performance of the offseason. He threw one interception after his pass got tipped by Antone Exum. Otherwise, Beathard played well. And he benefitted from playing behind the second-string offensive line. Earlier in camp, he took lots of reps behind the third-string offensive line, which is so bad it’s a hazard. Any quarterback who plays behind that line will struggle, as we saw today from Nick Mullens (more on him below). Meaning I may have been too hard to Beathard the past few days. He looks better when he has protection. Go figure.
  3. DE Nick Bosa. Started in place of Dee Ford, split time with Ronald Blair and beat both Joe Staley and Mike McGlinchey to record two sacks during 11-on-11 team drills.
  4. CB Jason Verrett. Played right cornerback with the first-string defense for the first three plays of practice and broke up a pass intended for Marquise Goodwin, who ran a comeback route near the sideline. Verrett and Richard Sherman sat out the rest of practice. That’s a big reason Garoppolo and Beathard completed such a high percentage of their throws.
  5. SS Jaquiski Tartt. Has to cover George Kittle all morning every day, which is no fun. Kittle can make Tartt look bad even when Tartt covers him well. Today, Kittle jumped and caught a ball over Tartt’s head when Tartt was all over him. But later, Tartt got revenge and broke up a pass intended for Kittle in the red zone.
  6. SS Marcell Harris. Intercepted a pass Mullens intended for Richie James. Harris read the pass all the way.
  7. LB Fred Warner. Ran stride for stride with speedy running back Tevin Coleman downfield as Coleman ran a wheel route. Garoppolo’s pass fell incomplete. Warner has been excellent throughout camp.
  8. WR Dante Pettis. Made an extremely difficult one-handed catch while running a dig route over the middle. Call this Good Pettis. Also dropped a pass near the sideline and failed to outmuscle Greg Mabin for a contested catch. Mabin swatted the ball out of Pettis’ hands. Call this Bad Pettis. He doesn’t certain things well, but doesn’t seem consistent or strong enough to be a No. 1 wide receiver. The 49ers don’t have a No. 1 receiver.
  9. TE Ross Dwelley. Caught a 15-yard pass over the middle while taking a big hit. Dwelley has strong hands and he gets open. He’s a good player. The 49ers have to find a role for him. He should be their No. 2 tight end, and they should use more two-tight-end formations than they did the past two seasons.
  10. FB Kyle Juszczyk. Caught his first pass of camp. Gained one yard.

THE NOT SO GOOD

    1. QB Nick Mullens. Had his first bad practice of training camp. Completed only 5 of 12 passes. Played behind the third-string offensive line all morning and had very little time to throw. Still, Mullens made one nice play in the red zone from the four-yard line. He lined up in the shotgun, caught the snap, went through three progressions in about a second and threw a strike to Jordan Matthews who dropped the ball in the end zone.
    2. RB Raheem Mostert. Fumbled twice. May have fumblitis. Has fumbled three times in just 41 career carries. No wonder he’s a fourth-string running back even though he averages 7.2 yards per carry.
    3. DT DeForest Buckner. Missed his second practice in a row with a toe strain. The defense is significantly better with him on the field than without him.
    4. DE Dee Ford. Missed his third practice in a row with knee tendinitis. Do you think the 49ers knew he had knee tendinitis when they signed him? Seems troubling.
    5. CB Ahkello Witherspoon. Missed practice with a strained glute three days after missing practice with a sore knee. Including Witherspoon, the following defensive starters either are injured or less than 100-percent healthy and operating on “pitch counts”: Ford, Buckner, Bosa, Verrett, Jimmie Ward and Kwon Alexander. Good thing it’s August 2 and not Sept. 2.

This article has 73 Comments

  1. If Garoppolo plays well when Buckner and Ford return, can the water carriers set down their pales?

    Too hard on Beathard? You? Nah…well now that you mention it…yea.

    The Bosa Constrictor finished another practice unscathed, plus he had two kills? You don’t say…

    Tartt is pretty good, but if only Reid were here…he’d be the backup.

    Grant, is Reynolds part of that 3rd string offensive line?

    1. They’re saving Ford for the regular season. He’ll be okay. Buckner has nothing to prove in these practices. I’d like to see the niners turn DJ Reed loose in these scrimmages
      .

        1. I think ­ NFLTVNOW­ .­C­O­M­ can be good place for you. You also will have there very good lives with all season games.

    2. Grant, thanks for he video and written report follow up. I’d like to applaud your “epiphany” in regards to Beathard’s lack of pass protection. However – I have to wonder where your “epiphany” was following the Niners’ first game of the 2018 season, on the road in Minnesota, after the OL was hit hard with injuries during the first half, playing in one of the most hostile environments in the league (US Bank Stadium), and subsequently being inundated with swarms of pressure by Minnesota’s top ranked defense (the Vikings were coming off of the 2017 season in which they ranked as the league’s best Total Defense)? The 49ers had lost both their first & second string RG’s go down in the first half, forcing them to shuffle the OL which hadn’t yet gelled. Out of shear desperation (and I don’t know how else you would describe it) they were even forced to move Mike McGlinchey, who was making his NFL debut, inside to OG for the entire second half.

      Some QB’s would have simply gone into full on protect mode, yet Jimmy G’s grit and determination kept his team in the game, and actually gave them a chance to pull off the upset in the fourth QTR, despite a below average rushing attack which saw Alfred Morris’ cough up the football on the Vikings’ one yard line – a soul crushing turnover late in the first half of what was still a one possession ballgame.

      Can you really have it both ways, Grant?

    3. Totalmente de acuerdo con lo Reid. El es unos de los errores más grandes de San Fran al cortarlo dejándose manipular por presiones políticas estúpidas.

    4. The Smaller Bear with a sack on the very first pass play of the day!

      Appolo 13 to Mission Ground Control: “Houston, the NFC West has a problem”

      1. The Bosa Constrictor strikes! I can’t wait to see him cut off the blood supply against Wilson. Goff should be very concerned, because he’s a statue. Murray doesn’t scare me at all….

        1. Yep! Not only that, if the 49ers are able to collapse the pocket as quickly as I anticipate they will, you can imagine the kind of impact that will have on their secondary. I mean, who would have imagined Nick Bosa would be giving Joe Staley pointers on the 5th day of training camp (besides me, lol)? That is absolutely, positively remarkable!

          Rams: The Niners DL is going to give Goff fits because he’s a guy who needs a clean pocket, though McVay will scheme ways to get the ball out of his hands early. Either way, this kind of pressure should limit the amount of explosive plays out of the Rams offense, especially with Todd Gurley presumably less than 100%.

          ChickenHawks: The slippery Wilson is going to find ways to make off-schedule plays, that’s what he does. However, at 5’11”, the key to limiting his success has always been making life tough for him inside the pocket. He’s a hard guy to “rattle”, but throwing from inside the pocket is hardly his strength, especially with the Niners above average size clogging up the interior.

          Cards: Same thing obviously with Murray, only he’s a rookie and will be playing behind a very suspect OL. Unlike Wilson, I expect the 49ers to rattle Murray early and often, and it’s going to be hilarious watching Murray scramble around like a chicken with his head cut off.

          1. Beat reporters are starting to get the impression that Nick Bosa is just showing off (ROB LOWDER of NinersNation & BlueWirePods’- “Bosa’s showing off now, sacked Garoppolo on first play of team drills”) now that he is getting his sea legs under him.

            Seriously though, everyone new that this guy was about as NFL ready as a DE could be coming out of college. The only question for the experts, besides durability (which I think is silly), was just how high is this kid’s NFL ceiling? Yah, he’s an extremely advanced defensive football player, especially for his age, but how much better can he really get when he’s already this polished? Well, now that my guy – Joe Staley, seems to have this much respect for Nick, taking to him like an older brother, it’s hard to imagine the Smaller Bear going anywhere other than up the NFL pass rushing pecking order, not to mention just how stout he is at setting an edge and stuffing the run.

            Yah, I’m not going to lie, I’ve developed a bit of a heterosexual man-crush on Nick the Quick!.

            Go NINERS!

  2. Knee tendinitis?!! Season over forget it just write him off! Biggest trade bust in 49er history. Wondering how awkward today was after you basically asked for John lynch’s Head, saying he should be fired ASAP.. and he was your guest?

  3. Sounds like Jimmy G & Bosa are back on track!
    Verrett might save our asses this year if he can stay healthy, I don’t trust Witherspoon.

  4. Bosa sure sounds like the real deal early. He’s having success against all OTs he’s facing, including both starting OTs, and he’s doing so with or without Buckner and Ford. Hard not to be excited about him.

    Regarding Ford’s knee tendinitis – I have dealt with both achilles and knee tendinitis for a while. I can honestly say the knee tendinitis is a bit annoying but not at all something that I have found limiting. Basically as soon as I start moving the pain goes away pretty quickly. I imagine training every day like Ford has been doing will make it feel worse over time, but I would be very surprised if this is something that limits his playing capability at his age.

    Achilles tendinitis on the other hand, that’s tough to run through. Takes a while to get it loose and really can hobble you. Wonder how Verrett’s achilles is holding up?

    1. The radio guys were saying that it sounds like the team is just taking it’s time with this stuff in an effort to get through camp healthy.

        1. I used to think that. I was red shirting in college and bummed that some of the veterans weren’t participating in all the drills and practices. Until we started to live scrimmage. They crushed us and I realized that they just needed rest to make it through the season healthy and every chance to get those people injuries healed. They ended up in the NAIA semifinals. Sometimes it’s just smarter to play this way.

    1. If we are stuck with CJ as the 9ers backup, instead of Nick Mullens, I think the 9er Empire will riot in the streets!

  5. Damn Grant can make excuses lol He set up the excuses from the beginning for Mullens.

    “Beathard played well. And he benefitted from playing behind the second-string offensive line. Earlier in camp, he took lots of reps behind the third-string offensive line, which is so bad it’s a hazard. Any quarterback who plays behind that line will struggle, as we saw today from Nick Mullens”.

    Grant wanted to throw CJ out of the league while not even seeing him with 1st string team. Mullens was an undrafted free agent for a reason, he has no ceiling. Let Mullens play against the 1st string defense and I bet he goes under 50% completion with ints. I’m not big on Mullens at all, we all saw him play last season and crumbled in 4th qts. He is a career backup.

    1. Mullins showed he was better than CJ last season. We also need to remember that there was not Buckner and Ford or Sherman, Verette or Witherspoon. Makes a difference regardless of the line you are playing behind. What makes Mullins good is his ability to get through his reads quickly. That is something neither JG and especially Cj B are doing presently.

  6. Please Press Democrat: Can you find someone that actually is positive about the 49ers? Grant I’m sure is a nice guy but it’s clear after his years of coverage that he dwells on the negative even in the part of his column that is supposed to be the “good” before he even gets to the “ not so good” the way he writes, it should be called the bad and the really bad. He’s just negative every chance he gets, especially with Jimmy G but really it’s with everyone, if he can bash them he will. There are a ton of people at practice that agree with me, about GC he need to be reassigned to something he enjoys because it is abundantly clear, he’s not a niners fan and we deserve someone’s that covers the team optimistically, not a debbie downer.

      1. Yeah because someone is in his face, that’s how the soft operate. Otherwise I agree with James, Grant definitely has it in for Jimmy, even when he’s trying to be positive, he can’t help himself to bring up something negative. Jimmy could go 11/12 passing and guaranteed Grant will spend more time on the one incompletion than the 11 completions combined. He’s done it countless times, hell just look at the todays article, he couldn’t help but say something about Jimmy struggling with Ford and Buck even tho they weren’t playing today even when he’s at the top on the list on the good side grant has to be negative in someway.

      2. Did you read his article when he was bashing him? He said McGlinchey had no impact but he was rated one of the top rookie offensive lineman of the draft. And everyone was a bust even though most of them are on the team and developing. I guess in grants opinion, since he didn’t draft a super bowl contending team out the gate he sucks at his job.

    1. You guys still don’t get it. His newspaper wants him to be negative to stir up clicks and controversy to sell papers. When he does his periscope he is far less critical. In fact, I am convinced if it were not for his bosses he would be far more evenhanded.

    2. Yes we all agree on this, the guy doesn’t understand the process of football. one day it’s cut him the next it’s omg he’s amazing. This is why he writes for the Press Democrat and not a good news source.

      1. You mean the Pulitzer Prize winning Press Democrat.
        .
        Grant knows the process of football very well. 4-12 teams should not be praised like they are 12-4 teams.

        1. Oh Sebs, will ya leave Grant alone??? He’s a big boy and doesn’t need you fawning over him all the time. You do that, ya know………….what makes you think he needs it?

        2. Correct Seb…these catfish and colons negative attitudes toward Grant because he’s telling like it is about JG and others on the team along with exaggerating what Grant writes is way off and ridiculous. If you praise Grant they say you fawn over him while they attack him…..silly.

          1. I made it a point to defend Grant from the haters, so you do not see many screeds against him anymore.
            .
            However, I also disagree with him at times, and point out flaws in his presentations, because I do not want to look like a cheerleader. Everyone can improve, Grant included.
            .
            I am heartened by all the other recent posters who see Grant as a non partisan analyst, who tells it like it is, warts and all.

    3. Grant’s observations are spot on and he offers a type of in-depth analysis you don’t get from other beat reporters.

    4. James Brooks= hey dude its a 4 win team…..when they start winning titles and playoff games the tide will turn as will the writers and fans attitudes…until then go with the flow…Grant just calls it as he sees it =what is wrong with that? Perhaps you just shouldn’t read his column then you can go back to feeling good about a losing team.

  7. “Keep in mind, DeForest Buckner and Dee Ford have missed the past two practices. When they have played, Garoppolo has struggled.”

    Well, I’ll just leave it here:
    When kept clean, Garoppolo’s quarterback rating is 110.1, 10 points higher than Matt Ryan and 5 points higher than Tom Brady. As if that wasn’t enough, PFF graded Jimmy GQ as the 4th best quarterback from a clean pocket.

    And also from PFF:
    Pressured plays by nature are diverse. You’d be hard-pressed to find two plays under pressure that look exactly alike. To pile on, pressure occurs on just about 35.0 percent of dropbacks making the sample size of pressured plays much smaller than its ‘less-sexy’ counterpart, the clean pocket.

    This begs the question, if we want to predict the future, should we put more stock in how a quarterback plays under pressure or from a clean pocket.

    1. Spoiler Alert:
      Yes, you should.

      According to PFF, “to predict quarterback play, look at how he performs when he’s in a clean pocket, not when he’s under pressure

      Pressure is indeed important, and it affects every quarterback negatively. However, we find out very little about how good a quarterback is by looking at his pressured drop-backs. Indeed, we found that quarterback play (however you measure it) from a clean, un-pressured pocket tells you the most about quarterback play.”

  8. Saw my first 49er game at Kesar on Dec 17th 1968.Went to Super Bowl 16. Live in alabama now. Took my son to Alanta for the N.F.C title game. Go 9ERS Fatihful in Alababma

  9. Thanks Grant haven’t been commenting much (works been crazy) but I really appreciate all these write ups and video breakdowns; helps my day go a little faster.

  10. Funny…Mullens has a bad day and we get a ton of excuses…Jimmy G has a bad day and he can’t read a defense…even though starring down a receiver isn’t a symptom of not being able to read a defense. It has more to do with not having a ton of experience with his receivers to trust that they’ll be where they’re supposed to be when they’re supposed to be there…

  11. Wow. This was a good read! Funny and very descriptive! So far sounds like it is going to be another mani season for the 9ers🤷🏾‍♂️🤦🏾‍♂️🙏🏾

  12. For all you fangirls, NFL network is at Niners camp right now. Kyle sounded good. I predict a breakthrough season for him as a coach.

  13. Hey Sour you out there? We still have a bet don’t we? If its okay with you would like to change the length to seven posting days from thirty. I believe whine wanted some of this too and if for some strange reason I lost I am not willing to do 30 days with you then 30 days with whine. Its too much and then its not fun so up to you…I don’t have a confirmation with whine…

      1. I am taking 9 or more wins and Sour is taking up to seven wins. 8-8 is a push. Loser has to state something to this effect Sour ‘I lost to Under’ Yeast as his name for x amount of posting days, all day long . If I lose its under ‘I lost to Sour’ center. The days don’t have to be contiguous but the times you post have to be contiguous. I know which side you are on :) Anyone else want in is welcome. Seb you have been spouting off using verbs of the negative all off season?

        1. I think anything at or above 9-7 is money. Sans the injuries of previous two seasons, this team now has solid players, coaching, and hunger. Sure, kittle won’t be as good as last year and Mullins certainly be very good just sitting on the bench, etc., but Sherman, Garoppolo, and Taylor are all healthier. Plus, just look at how close the losses were last year while fielding the very worst pass-rush in the league. Just imagine the difference Defense newbies Bosa and Ford will have on Buckner, Armstead and Thomas. And, just imagine the competitive fire newbies Deebo and Hurd will give to Taylor, Goodwin, and Pettis.

          Make no mistake: Our 49ers are going to surprise a lot of people this year.

        2. I made a bet with Pot/Kettle, and lost, so I fulfilled the terms of the bet, and noted his football acumen. However, even he was surprised when Lindstrom went 14. He thought late first. I was hoping he would fall to the Niners early second.
          .
          My problem with your bet, is that winning against you just does not seem like such a big deal. ;p
          .
          I am predicting an 8-8 season so it is already a push, according to your terms.

        3. Notice Bosa is putting on a clinic and we don’t hear a peep from the Mighty Quinn????

          SSSEEEBBBBBBRRRAAAIIIIIDDDDAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. This one’s for you, Cassie Freakin Balke—

    Rob Lowder

    @Rob_Lowder
    The #49ers are signing former #Texans receiver Chris Thompson, per @TomPelissero. The team was at 90 players prior to the signing, so a corresponding roster move is inbound.
    10:41 AM – Aug 3, 2019

    REPLY: The Baltimore Ravens are on the lookout for former AAF players. With the AAF closing its doors last week, player contracts have also effectively been voided, making them free agents in the NFL once again. Though many of the former AAF players have some experience in the NFL, they needed a little extra time to develop.
    One such player the Ravens are showing some interest in is former Orlando Apollos wide receiver Chris Thompson. Baltimore is having Thompson in for a visit.

    Thompson is a lankier wide receiver at 6-foot-0 and 175 pounds but he has blazing 4.37 40-yard dash speed. The Ravens have a need for deep speed on their roster after John Brown left in free agency.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/ravens-visiting-with-former-aaf-texans-wr-chris-thompson/ar-BBVNPeY

  15. Themes so far from camp, from what I can gather:

    1) Injuries are not as severe as last year (knock on wood). That is a very good thing!

    2) OL line is pretty good at the edges and not so good towards the inside. This will be good with some teams and not so good with others (Rams especially). Also, the line is paper thin! Both of these are not good.

    3) DL looks to be the strength of the team. This is a very good thing as it will provide for better opportunities on the field and perhaps mask some other shortcomings to some degree!

    4) The WR group is still largely an unknown factor. There are some signs it is pointing up (Deebo). We will have to keep an eye as to which direction this pointer goes.

    5) The DB situation is bad. Could be a real problem. Let’s hope not too many people challenge Sherman again this year…

    6) TE situation is very good.

    7) Quarterback situation looks good as well. We know what we have at 1, 2 and 3. Question is who will be 2 and will 3 be kept. Pray for the health of 1 though…

    8) RB situation is still very fluid. Breida May be the best but not durable. Who knows why the team pays Juice so much?

    I think the team outlook is better, even in the preseason, with respect to the overall team, however there are still too many question marks for my liking. Also the usual Shanahan shortcomings are still ever present. Will be fun to see how it all shakes out though. This is a make or break year, in my opinion, no matter what happens.

    1. SY very well said…..lets hope no more Garoppscuses but it is evidently evident that the weaknesses are Oline DbSafety and WR…..Mullens can win games so there are 2 decent QB’s….but yes at least this year they are working on REdzonE drills etc the weaknesses….however it is puzzling considering cap space to not bolster the weaknesses of the roster. Did I mention weaknesses?

      1. It can get very polarized here prior to kickoffs (“We’re Super Bowl bound” to “We’ll be lucky if we win any games”). Figured I would give my two cents as a resident naysayer of what I have observed from reading feedback on practices.

        Hasn’t changed my assessment of where the team likely will end 8 wins if every thing goes our way (never does) 6 wins likely, 4 if wheels come off.

    2. Ah did we forget how special the special teams will be – you do know we have a punter :)

      1. yuppers
      2. I believe the season hinges on this position group.
      3. It could be awesome
      4. I agree with that
      5. I am not sold on Sherman either
      6. Sure the heck is.
      7. QB situation is unknown with arrows pointing up
      8. Lots of talent here

      1. UC,

        I know that Gould is good and we are still wishing upon a star in the punting category. He is likely to be good, but he hasn’t gotten pressure yet. Let’s wait and watch a few preseason games before we give the gold jacket.

        And yes on your feedback but we had RB talent last year too. What we didn’t have is durability and 3rd down/Red Zone toughness. Not sure that has changed much.

    3. Hmmm, an 8 point presentation?
      .
      Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. ;p
      .
      BTW, I agree with most of what you said.

  16. If we’re on the goaline, I’d like to come out in an I-Formation with Hurd at tailback, Juice in front of him and depending on the look the defense gives us, run Hurd or use motion to send him out on a designed pass play….

  17. Knee tendonitis only hurts after practice or a game. And can linger. But him being out of practice shouldn’t be alarming yet. He knows his job. If it’s how I think he’ll have to ice after every game, and miss a practice here or there. Many NBA players have knee tendonitis, that you never hear about.

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