With an off day from practice for the players, it’s the perfect time to see who’s stock is up — and down — after Friday’s practice.
DL Sheldon Day
After playing six games for the 49ers in 2017, Day returned to San Francisco with hopes of finding a spot along the defensive line.
DL DeForest Buckner is typically the recipient of all the praise that the defensive line receives due to the sheer magnitude of his individual dominance. However, during Friday’s practice, Day was able to steal the thunder away.
In a series of back-to-back plays, Day had a tackle behind the line of scrimmage, followed by what would have been a sack. With his continued strong run during training camp, Day is sure to find lots of snaps during the regular season.
CB Greg Mabin
Rightfully so, all of the rookie defensive backs on the 49ers’ roster have been getting the most attention. After bouncing around in 2017 as an undrafted free agent, CB Greg Mabin landed with the 49ers and is looking to earn a bigger role this season.
With CB Richard Sherman getting an off day on Thursday, Mabin saw first-team reps and flashed some potential during Friday’s practice. The ex-Iowa cornerback intercepted QB Jimmy Garoppolo and took it back for a would-be touchdown.
While Mabin is on the outside looking in — in terms of the 53-man roster, he could be a solid option in case there’s injuries in the 49ers’ defensive backfield.
Head Coach Kyle Shanahan
Through a long offseason, there will always be days where the players come in un-focused and don’t take it as seriously as they should.
In a violent sport, a lack of focus and discipline can lead to injuries, un-warranted penalties and poor play in general. The start to Friday’s practice wasn’t what Shanahan was expecting from his team and he let them know about it.
With most players likely looking forward to a Saturday off, practice started off poorly, including sloppy penalties. Shanahan had seen enough. He immediately rounded up the players, rallied the troops, resulting in improved play for the rest of practice.
OG Joshua Garnett
Per Kyle Shanahan, former first-round pick Joshua Garnett says that “he’s not feeling right” and “will be re-evaluated on the same knee that he injured last season.”
The ex-Stanford offensive lineman was supposed to start for the 49ers this season, but with every passing day, Garnett continues to be unavailable. The best ability any player can possess is availability, and sadly, Garnett hasn’t had it.
This should clear the way for Mike Person, who continued to take the first-team reps in Garnett’s absence.
While it’s a major part of the game, nobody is ever rooting for players getting hurt. However, the 49ers seem to be getting injured left and right during the offseason. OLs Joshua Garnett and Jonathan Cooper are both down, TE Cole Wick was injured during Thursday’s session and pass-rusher Jeremiah Attaochu is day-to-day with a groin injury.
Add to that, DB Jimmie Ward was limited, LB Fred Warner had a chest injury, and CB Richard Sherman felt tightness in his hamstring after Friday’s practice. DL Arik Armstead has already been out for a while and doesn’t seem like he’s returning back to the lineup any time soon.
Nothing derails a team with aspirations quicker than injuries and it’s starting to slowly add up for the 49ers. San Francisco’s younger players are going to have to step up until the rest of the guys get healthy.