The San Francisco 49ers conducted a joint practice with the Houston Texans on Friday, and we’re now 48 hours from their preseason opener. The team will wrap up “training camp” with practice on Saturday. After that, they’re into the preseason!
We already know the notable news with Colin Kaepernick limited in team drills. Kaepernick has said his arm should snap back fine, but it certainly raises some questions. Chip Kelly said the coaching staff will meet following Friday’s practice to finalize starters and snap decisions. With no practice Thursday and limited work on Friday, it would not be surprising if Kaepernick did not play on Sunday.
Bruce Ellington, Jerome Simpson stand out
It sounds like the 49ers wide receiver had a huge day. According to Grant Cohn, he beat Texans No. 1 cornerback, Kareem Jackson, five separate times. Quinton Patton left team drills at one point, and DeAndre Smelter was apparently not taking part in team drills, which opened up plenty more reps elsewhere. Ellington is in a strong position, as a guy with a lot of flexibility in the offense. We’ve heard plenty of suggestions that he is a fantasy sleeper, and I’m thinking it is more and more likely.
Jerome Simpson had a big catch as well, and has quietly shown up on practice reports several times thus far. With a lot of young question marks, the veteran could be in a good position at the end of camp.
Jeff Driskel keeps doing his thing
The rookie quarterback is making some plays. The coaches have pointed out that he does some good and bad, so we certainly have to take things with the proverbial grain of salt. But I eagerly await his first big play in the preseason when people lose their minds in the comments and on Twitter. It might be the most predictable thing of the next four weeks.
Arik Armstead misses team drills
The 49ers defensive tackle missed practice on Tuesday and Wednesday with a shoulder issue. He was back on Thursday, but then did not participate in team drills on Friday. I would not be surprised if he sits out Sunday’s game. If that’s the case, DeForest Buckner likely moves into the starting lineup.