At the time of writing, the season premiere of Dr. Who is less than 24 hours away! Oh wait, yeah, I'm also writing this before the team formulates this year's practice squad. As such, I will mainly review the major position battles that won't be majorly affected by practice squad eligibility. For example, one of the biggest questions this offseason asked us if a bubble player could break into the WR corps. Turns out they couldn't. The six we thought would make it did. That said, there is obviously room for some of the guys to make it onto the practice squad.
One battle I did discuss quite heavily was the back-up RB battle. I was pretty convinced that Anthony Dixon would be the odd man out, even as recently as a few days ago. Lol me! Either way, it's really easy to root for the guy, and behind Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter, and LaMichael James, I just don't see him making much of an impact. Same goes on the FB front. I bet Bruce Miller will likely hold that down. Look for Dixon to contribute on special teams.
Continuing on the offensive side of the ball, the big surprise is back-up TE Garrett Celek. With the lol me already in place, might as well just admit that I thought Dobbs was going to be the only back-up TE the team carried. Anyway, I am excited to watch them, well, block. Pretty much all the catching will be done by Vernon Davis and Delanie Walker.
Now for the biggie on offense: back-up QB. I have written much about this battle previously, and much will probably be written on the backs of digital trees in the coming days. I will keep this brief so that this post doesn't dissolve into a QB post (though feel free to have the comments do so). I think Josh Johnson, right now, is a better QB. I think Scott Tolzien's ceiling is much higher. He can be a better QB. That's why the 49ers made the right decision.
Alex Boone won the starting right Guard battle. Alex Boone should have won it. I'm happy for him. I think our right side is much better now.
The defensive side of the ball saw less competition for obvious reasons (cough, we are awesome, cough). In my mind, most competition was happening on an individual level, as an OLB here might be battling a S there - or maybe even a WR or RB.
Anyway, the major battle on the defensive side of the ball was at back-up CB. For the most part this pre-season, I wasn't too impressed. Though I think we have some fantastic depth with which to work this season, the drop off between Carlos Rogers, Tarell Brown, Chris Culliver and Tramaine Brock and Perrish Cox is immense. Maybe my expectations are too high. Moreover, I can see Cox having a bit of a "break out" season. The talent seems there. By and large, though, I really hope the secondary can stay healthy.