Football! Well, mostly. The 49ers began training camp Wednesday. Star players such as Trent Williams (personal) and Deebo Samuel didn’t suit up. However, Deebo looked like he was in great shape. Reportedly, Samuel will receive $70 million guaranteed:
Per source, the Deebo Samuels deal should be done soon, guaranteed money could be as much as $70M.— Sheena Quick (@Sheena_Marie3) July 27, 2022
The plan is to give you a recap after each practice. Today, Jordan and I were at practice. There were some technical difficulties at the beginning, so bear with us. It’s Day 1 for us, too.
We try to stay away from any concrete judgments since this is only the first day. For example, Darqueze Dennard probably won’t end up starting at nickel, even though he was with the first team today.
Dominating the trenches
Defenses will be better than offenses during the first week of training camp. That’s everywhere. That’s especially the case with a defensive line such as the Niners. The defensive line overwhelmed the youngsters today.
With Williams out of the lineup, Colton McKivitz took his spot. Aaron Banks, Jaken Brendel, Spencer Burford, and Mike McGlinchey rounded out the rest of the line. Burford was a bit of a surprise. Shanahan wasn’t lying when he spoke about musical chairs.
Daniel Brunskill practiced at center with the second team, while Jaylon Moore rotated at right guard, too. But the story was on the other side of the line. Arik Armstead raised hell, and Kevin Givens wasn’t far behind.
The youth along the offensive line will have to grow up fast. Luckily for them, they won’t have to worry about the lack of competition on the other side of the ball.
There wasn’t much to take away from Lance on Day 1. If we’re being objective, he left some throws on the field and was a bit inaccurate for most of the day. Guess what? That’s OK. Like the rest of the team, we'll judge Lance when the pads come on and how they progress during training camp.
What I liked was giving his receivers a chance, even if they are covered. Brandon Aiyuk made three impressive catches with cornerbacks draped all over him. Those don’t happen without the quarterback throwing him the ball.
The best part about Lance’s day was during one period where he converted every third-down pass. On two occasions, Lance went through multiple progressions and went from one side of the field to the other to complete a pass.
Day 1 bold claim
Speaking of wideouts, don’t be surprised Danny Gray surpasses Jauan Jennings on the depth chart. Jennings struggled mightily on the outside against Charvarius Ward. I’m not certain he’s
Gray made some nice catches outside of his frame throughout practice. He gave Ambry Thomas big-time problems. Gray’s speed is evident, but he’s much more than a one-trick pony.
Players of the day
Jordan picked Aiyuk. He believes Aiyuk has a chance to be WR1 this season. If Wednesday’s practice is any evidence, Jordan’s prediction may come true.
I’m going with Armstead. I’m not giving the 49ers credit for playing him inside full-time since it took injuries for that to happen. Armstead is a problem. And I know it’s tough to differentiate whether it’s him or a lackluster interior offensive line, but how Armstead won was sustainable.