The San Francisco 49ers are deep into week two of their OTAs and Niners Nation was there for all of your coverage. Many things were similar to week one but there were a few new additions to the routine.
- The offensive line ups were pretty much the same as week one. 1s for the OL: Joe Staley, Zane Beadles, Daniel Kilgore, Brandon Thomas and Erik Pears. 2s: Colin Kelly, Ian Silberman, Marcus Martin, Andrew Tiller, Trent Brown. 3s: Blake Muir, Norman Price, Alex Balducci, Fahn Cooper John Theus (Joshua Garnett is still in school and won’t attend off season programs until mandatory mini camp during the first week of June).
- QBs started throwing against screens. Literally. Three members of the training staff were outfitted with shoulder harnesses that each have a window screen attached (The kind that keep out bugs). The screens appeared to be approximately 2'x3'6 and obviously extend much higher than the person wearing said harness. After the ball is snapped, the trainers walk toward the QB like zombies in an episode of The Walking Dead. QB Blaine Gabbert's passes fell victim to the screens more than once. Unfortunately, this drill occurred during the portion of practice where no cameras are allowed. I may have to resort to sketching the contraption.
- Antoine Bethea is back to his usual routine. He was very vocal during 11-on-11 drills. According to Eric Reid he was benching 245 in the weight room. Both he and Reid are further ahead of everyone in the secondary room per DC Jim O’Neil.
- Practice is fast but there are intervals of speed drills. There are times where there is constant, hurried movement during 11-on-11s or 7-on-7s but then there are moments that are seemingly slower and that seem like teaching segments. The fastest portion of practice was a 25 sec drill where each group, (1s, 2s and 3s) tried to run as many plays as possible in 25 seconds. They were allowed clock stoppage akin to real game situations like a runner going out of bounds, but once the clock reached 0:00, whistles were blown and the next group took their positions on the field.
- Ahmad Brooks is still not cleared to practice due to an undisclosed injury. He was not on the field for the practice, rehabbing with Devon Cajuste in an adjacent area.
- DeForest Buckner is still working with the 3s. He is obviously going to get playing time this season, but it's possible that because they know what they are getting with him, they are letting others get more time with the 2s.
- According to DC Jim O'Neil, there is a three man race to see who will work at ILB next to NaVorro Bowman between Michael Wilhoite, Ray Ray Armstrong and Gerald Hodges. We spoke to both Armstrong and Hodges after practice, more to come on that soon.
- There were a lot of passes thrown to Eric Rogers. He was working with the 2s and QB Thad Lewis. His size and experience could help him solidify a role in the offense.
- Colin Kaepernick is still not throwing the ball. He continues to go through the motions while the other three QBs throw the ball.
- Jeff Driskel has been doing some work with special teams. He was not with the other QBs during warm ups because he was working with STs where his speed could be an asset.
- Jimmie Ward was working at corner most of the day but there won't be a solid decision on where he will play until either training camp or even as late as preseason. O'Neil stated that he is one of the best 11 players on the defense and they will find a way to use him.
- Players on return duties were primarily Bruce Ellington and Bryce Treggs. DeAndrew White did field one return at the end of practice.
- Jim O'Neil discussed three attributes the coaching staff is looking for from players: relentless, accountable, and productive.
More OTA coverage next Thursday as well as Minicamp June 7, 8 & 9.