SANTA CLARA – With 20 minutes remaining in practice, Jim Harbaugh set up a fourth down drill:
Fourth and five from the opponent’s 20-yard line, the edge of the red zone. The offense had one chance to make a first down or a touchdown.
The first-team offense faced the first-team defense and right away, Ahmad Brooks jumped offside like he did in the Super Bowl.
The 49ers replayed the down and this time, NaVorro Bowman batted away Kaepernick’s pass at the line of scrimmage.
Next up were the twos. McCoy dropped back and floated a beautiful pass over Perrish Cox’s head to Marlon Moore in the back-left corner of the end zone for a touchdown.
On the next play, Scott Tolzien committed a Delay of Game penalty.
Here’s what else stood out to me at Friday’s pad-less practice.
1. The Colin Kaepernick-Vernon Davis connection – Kaepernick threw five times to Davis and Davis caught all five passes for roughly 100 yards. Davis was wide open most of the time. He burned Donte Whitner repeatedly.
2. Trenton Robinson – Playing free-safety, he read Kaepernick’s eyes and broke early on a pass to Anquan Boldin running a square in. Robinson easily broke up the pass, but he couldn’t hold on for the interception.
3. Cam Johnson – The outside linebacker outran Bruce Miller on a deep wheel route and almost intercepted the pass. Miller had to become a defensive back and knock the ball away to prevent the interception.
4. C.J. Spillman – Playing single-high safety, Spillman sprinted across half of the field and broke up a deep pass from Kaepernick intended for A.J. Jenkins on the sideline. Culliver was running stride-for-stride with Jenkins and was in position to knock away the pass, but Spillman soared in and knocked it away first. Culliver seemed annoyed with Spillman after the play.
5. Kyle Williams – He was the No.2 split end behind A.J. Jenkins, but Williams played better than Jenkins today. On one play, Williams beat Culliver on a crossing route for a 15-yard gain. That’s an accomplishment. Culliver hasn’t given up many long catches the first two days of training camp.
6. Ricardo Lockette – Although he hasn’t established himself as a deep threat (he couldn’t get a hand on a well-thrown deep pass when he was covered by Tramaine Brock), Lockette is not afraid to go over the middle and he’s improved his hands. On one play he reached out and snagged a laser from Kaepernick in the middle of the field between two defenders.
7. Chad Hall – He beat Chris Culliver on a slant for a gain of four or five yards. He also beat Marcus Cooper for a 20-yard catch, and he beat Perrish Cox for a 10-yard catch.
8. Justin Smith – The 49ers’ offense tried a trick play but Smith destroyed it. Kaepernick threw it Williams who threw it back to Kaepernick in the backfield, who wanted to throw it downfield but couldn’t because Smith immediately got in his face and tagged him.
9. Tarell Brown – He said he couldn’t focus during yesterday’s practice, but he was locked in today. He didn’t give up a single catch. A.J. Jenkins could not separate from Brown’s coverage. Quarterbacks rarely even looked Brown’s way.
10. Anquan Boldin – He made the catch of the day in one-on-one drills. He ran a Go route against Carlos Rogers. Kaepernick threw it up, Boldin had no separation and Rogers was holding his left arm, but Boldin reached up and caught it with his right hand. He made it look easy.
11. Vance McDonald – He dropped one catchable pass deep down the middle of the field, but he made up for it by catching three other passes, one short one and two intermediate ones.
1. Perrish Cox – He gave up a touchdown to Marlon Moore in a fourth-down drill and a deep touchdown to Chuck Jacobs in a one-on-one drill. Cox is quick, physical and aggressive, but he’s not fast and he’s vulnerable deep.
2. A.J. Jenkins – He didn’t catch a pass in team drills until 4:15, when there were 30 minutes left. At the beginning of practice, Jenkins ran a Go route against Brown in a one-on-one drill and dove/fell at the goal line. The pass was catchable, but he didn’t get a hand on it. Brown never touched him. Jenkins ended up catching a quick screen at the line of scrimmage, and twice he beat soft coverage with quick hitch routes – Nnamdi Asomugha and Daryl Morris gave Jenkins 10-yard cushions on those plays.
3. Quinton Patton – No catches, no targets. He has worn a blue non-contact jersey the past two days, but he’s participated in all of the drills. I assume he’s nursing an injury, but not a serious one