The San Francisco 49ers are into their OTAs, and while there is no live contact, drills can result in some contact happening. One player who is not going to be making any contact is linebacker Reuben Foster. The 49ers later first round pick is recovering from a torn rotator cuff, and the plan is to have him ready for training camp.
Foster took part in some individual work on Tuesday, but the plan is to avoid physical contact (video). Head coach Kyle Shanahan told the media that Foster is not allowed to do work where it is possible contact will happen with another player.
Foster had rotator cuff surgery prior to the NFL Combine. Reports before and after the draft had some teams expressing concern that Foster would need a second surgery. Foster and the 49ers have both said that is not a concern, and there medical staff fully cleared Foster. The plan is for Foster to continue with individual drills in OTAs and minicamp, but then have him 100 percent ready when training camp arrives.
The 49ers do have options available in case Foster is unable to go at the start of camp. They signed Malcolm Smith in the early days of free agency. I don’t know that they anticipated also getting Reuben Foster at that point, but Shanahan told the media on Tuesday that the team got better “really fast” with those two additions. The team will not reveal the plans for the two of them, although if fully healthy, I continue to think we see Smith as the base down weak-side linebacker, and Foster as the nickel linebacker next to NaVorro Bowman.