The 49ers opened up practice to the media for the third and final time during OTAs before heading into minicamp. Several aspects of practice were similar to what we’ve seen the past two weeks and of course, some new elements.
Trent Taylor is still out with a back injury, missing all of OTAs. Malcolm Smith did not practice with a tweaked groin and Jimmie Ward did not practice with a tweaked ankle. Both Smith and Ward are expected to participate next week in minicamp.
Jerick McKinnon, who sat out of practice a few days last week with a minor ankle injury, returned to full participation as did Reuben Foster who was held out of team drills last week, after missing the beginning of OTAs due to legal matters.
This week they included standard work, red zone drills and a move the ball period were downs are counted, yard makers are used and the offense attempts to matriculate down the field.
Joshua Garnett is playing on the right side...for now
Offensive line coach John Benton confirmed Garnett has transformed his body since being on IR, and has been playing “balls out, flying around” so far during camp. He has been rotating between the 1s and 2s on the right side with Mike Person for continuity, giving Garnett the opportunity to show what he’s got. That could change when Jonathan Cooper returns to practice during training camp.
This offense has speed
One of the best plays of the day was running back Matt Breida going deep down the right sideline and Jimmy Garoppolo catching him in stride for a long gain while being covered by Tarvarius Moore. After practice Garoppolo confirmed that going deep is something that is not unusual for Breida. Being a deep threat is actually asked of by all of the skill players on the offense as each are capable.
Kendrick Bourne is continuing his upward progress
After missing OTAs in his rookie year, Bourne is taking advantage of this year’s camp getting plenty of opportunities to show what he’s capable of. He has been taking snaps with all three quarterbacks and doing so very successfully. Both Garoppolo and receivers coach Mike LaFelur were very complimentary of Bourne’s sophomore offseason thus far.
A little taste of Fred Warner and Reuben Foster
With Smith out of practice for the week, Warner and Foster had a chance to get some time in on the field together. While there is no full contact/tackling the two seemed to be working well together not allowing any big runs up the middle.
Jimmy Garoppolo is not perfect
Relax. It’s only OTAs and they are still only wearing shorts and jerseys. Garoppolo has been slinging it around but he’s also been taking chances with tough passes that have ended up in the wrong hands. While his passes haven’t been egregious errors, they have been risky, but why not? This is the teams chance to get a feel for what each other is capable of and part of that is making mistakes in practice.
Next week the 49ers hold their minicamp 6/12 - 6/14, and media will have access during practice.