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Winners and Losers from 49ers practice, July 31

Let’s see who impressed and who didn’t during Tuesday’s practice.

NFL: San Francisco 49ers-Training Camp Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers have begun their second week of practice at training camp. After their day off on Monday, the 49ers returned on Tuesday to continue establishing a rhythm and rapport on both sides of the ball. After seeing the numerous highlights — and lowlights — here’s a quick look at some of the winners and losers from Tuesday’s practice.


Defensive Backs

Tuesday proved to be a fortuitous day for Richard Sherman and Adrian Colbert, both picking off QB Jimmy Garoppolo. As Garoppolo looked to thread a pass to WR Marquise Goodwin, Colbert deciphered the play, intercepted the pass and turned it into a pick six.

Even though Sherman has been under scrutiny for getting burned by the speedy Goodwin last week, he flipped the script on Tuesday, showing why he’s still one of the best defensive backs on the team. After playing tight coverage on WR Pierre Garçon, Sherman undercut the route to pick off the 49ers’ quarterback.

The 49ers’ defensive backs were under a lot of heat last season for their porous performances, but early in training camp, the returns on the young — and veteran — investments have been high.

WR Trent Taylor

After undergoing surgery to remove bone spurs in his back, WR Trent Taylor was finally cleared to practice on Tuesday. While the 49ers’ receiving corps didn’t skip a beat without their second-year pass catcher, adding Taylor to Garoppolo’s tool box could prove deadly.

Taylor looked sharp in his 2018 debut, making numerous catches on intermediate routes. Between Taylor and rookie WR Dante Pettis, the 49ers should dominate the middle of the field this upcoming season.

The ex-Lousiana Tech WR projects to be a key piece to the 49ers’ offense and it was a pleasant sight to see him back on the field on Tuesday.


Corner Fade Routes

No matter how many years pass, fans will always remember the 49ers’ lack of execution in corner fade routes during the Jim Harbaugh era. Let it be in Super Bowl XLVII against the Ravens or the 2013 NFC Championship game against the Seahawks, San Francisco just can’t seem to complete a pass when running that play.

During practice on Tuesday, Kyle Shanahan poured salt on those wounds once again, setting up a corner fade from QB Jimmy Garoppolo to WR Pierre Garçon. To nobody’s surprise, the pass was broken up by none other than ex-Seahawks’ defender, Richard Sherman. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

DL Arik Armstead

One of the players that GM John Lynch is expecting significant growth from is DL Arik Armstead. After having his fifth-year option picked up, Armstead will need to produce a healthy, dominant campaign in order to validate a new contract.

A week into training camp, the ex-Oregon defender is already facing a setback with another health issue. The 49ers have listed Armstead as “week-to-week” with a hamstring injury.

After only playing in 14 out of a possible 32 games over the last two seasons, Armstead will need to overcome his injury issues to show his productivity on the field. The most important ability for any player is their availability. While it’s only a week into practice, the fourth-year lineman is already behind the eight-ball.