Jimmy Garoppolo has thrown back-to-back interceptions that were returned for touchdowns in as many days, but head coach Kyle Shanahan isn’t concerned.
“You get experience from practice,” Shanahan said. “You can coach it the exact same way as you would in a game, but it’s a little bit easier because the emotions aren’t there of winning and losing the game, and everyone in the world seeing it.”
Shanahan explained that coaching those mistakes is actually enjoyable, knowing that the team will get better from it. Sherman provided a wake up call for the 49ers quarterback that is especially valuable with the absence of joint practices or preseason games this year.
Shanahan chalked up the interceptions to Sherman playing with vision as opposed to Garoppolo trying to force a play. Shanahan explained that the intended receivers weren’t even who Sherman was covering, just the All-Pro playing with instincts and experience.
How close is Jason Verrett to recapturing his peak form? Consider the GPS device all players wear in their shoulder pads.
After joining the Chargers in 2014, that device recorded him at a high speed of 22.5 mph. In this training camp, Verrett, one of three players competing for a 49ers’ starting cornerback job, has clocked a speed of 22.2 mph.
“I was definitely happy with that,” he said during a Saturday phone interview with The Athletic. “After all the surgeries that I’ve been through, just being able to get to the 21 and the 22 (mph) mark. And I definitely credit the strength coaching staff for getting me back to those speed marks.”
“He’s better than I even thought he was — and I already knew he was top three, four in the game,” Williams said Saturday. “But just going up against him every day, seeing how smart he is, seeing how hard he works and just seeing how seriously he takes the game, I honestly see his trajectory as being one of the best in the game.”
- Jimmy Garoppolo did connect with Kittle on another play during the session. He found the tight end for a 25-yard pick up during 11-on-11 work.
- Ahkello Witherspoon made several notable plays. He defended a deep pass from Beathard intended for J.J. Nelson during full-team work. Witherspoon also notched a PBU and a leaping interception in the end zone during red zone drills.
- Kevin Givens notched a run stop for a loss of yards during “move-the-ball” work.
- During the team’s final period, Nick Mullens made two big connections with Jennings for roughly 20 and 15-yard gains, respectively.
- The session ended on a beautiful bomb downfield from Garoppolo to Kendrick Bourne during the “move-the-ball” period. Garoppolo’s pass sailed about 40 yards in the air and hit Bourne in stride as he beat his man to the end zone for the score, and the culmination of practice.
The matchup of the day at 49ers training camp lasted 60 seconds tops.
It was rookie defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw — a first-round pick — versus rookie guard Colton McKivitz — a fifth-round pick. They faced each other back to back during a one-on-one pass-rush drill.
Kinlaw was supposed to win — he has replaced All Pro defensive tackle DeForest Buckner in the 49ers defense. Kinlaw is supposed to start as a rookie and contend for the Defensive Rookie of the Year Award, which Nick Bosa won last season. Lots of pressure on Kinlaw.
And no pressure on McKivitz. He’s a fifth-round pick — he can be a backup his entire career. If he becomes a starter, he will exceed expectations.
4. Nose tackle Solomon Thomas.
Beat Laken Tomlinson during one-on-one pass-rush drills — something rookie Javon Kinlaw still hasn’t done yet. Thomas beat Tomlinson with a quick move to the inside. He seems to be improving as an interior pass rusher. I still don’t know why the 49ers played him at defensive end the first two seasons of his career. They stunted his development.
5. Defensive tackle Kevin Givens.
Tackled running back Jerick McKinnon for a four-yard loss during team drills. Givens is just as good if not better than Thomas. The 49ers won’t talk about Givens because they don’t want other teams to know about him. But they also probably won’t let him go because he’s too good.
6. Guard Colton McKivitz.
Beat Javon Kinlaw both times they faced each other during one on ones, and knocked Kinlaw to the ground during the second rep. With Daniel Brunskill playing center, McKivitz clearly is the second-best guard on the 49ers after Tomlinson. McKivitz absolutely should start over veteran Tom Compton Week 1. Stay tuned for the blow-by-blow of McKivitz’s showdown with Kinlaw in the upcoming Matchup of the Day.
7. Tight end Chase Harrell.
Caught a 15-yard pass from Nick Mullens during team drills. Harrell seems to make a nice catch every other practice, as opposed to rookie sixth-round pick Charlie Woerner, who has made just one catch in team drills through seven days of camp. Harrell is a far superior receiver than Woerner.
8. Wide receiver Kendrick Bourne.
Beat Richard Sherman for a 60-yard touchdown catch on the final play of practice. Sherman tried to read Garoppolo’s eyes, but misread them and left Bourne all alone, and Bourne ran a great route. His terrific training camp continues.
9. Wide receiver Jauan Jennings.
Beat current starting nickelback Jamar Taylor for a 15-yard catch on third and 6, and caught a touchdown pass from C.J. Beathard in the red zone. Jennings could become a third-down specialist and red-zone specialist as a rookie. He excels in both situations.