Matt Maiocco put together an article today that hit on a point I had not even considered during the NFL Lockout. In his article, Maiocco discussed the idea of filming the "Camp Alex" workouts and sending them along to the coaching staff for breakdown. In doing so, the coaching staff would have an idea where the players were at and could create a more efficient plan for training camp when the lockout ends.
Under the NFL's imposed rules on clubs, coaches are not allowed to communicate with players on football matters. However, there are no rules on how players can communicate to coaches. They can't really get on the phone and call the coaches but what's to say they couldn't send along film like Maiocco suggests? Or how about written reports on what went down at practice and how things are coming along to accompany the film? It sounds like there was no film of this first practice beyond what CSN Bay Area shot from the fences. So if you're Alex Smith, why not write up how things went, what the players learned and worked on, where they are already looking good?
It's entirely possible this is happening in some form or fashion and the players are figuring out ways to communication with the coaches. If not it seems like they should really get on this if they don't want to get completely left behind when football starts back up after the lockout. The new coaching staff and new playbooks mean the 49ers have a steeper learning curve as compared to the rest of the league. Little things like mailing or emailing information to the coaching staff is one way they can lessen that curve.