San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly met with the media prior to Friday's practice and covered a number of topics. Kelly started off by stating that he was impressed with how the team arrived condition-wise. "Really impressed with the overall group and what they came back in," said Kelly. "I think they understood what we demand out of our training session and what we're trying to get accomplished and they came in ready to go and they've been really good so far."
WR Eric Rogers suffered a torn ACL during practice on Thursday and will be out for the season. The team discovered the injury following an MRI on Thursday. It was a non-contact injury. The team will likely look to sign another wide receiver to take his place on the 90-man roster.
He's not likely to be finding the positives in it yet, but tearing an ACL in Aug gives Eric Rogers a chance to return in 2017 #49wz— Aaron Erickson (@EricksonAaron44) August 5, 2016
WR Torrey Smith's injury was minor and he will be ready to go today. WR Bruce Ellington will return to practice today after a finger injury.
SS Jaquiski Tartt (leg) is expected to return soon. CB Will Redmond (ACL) and DB L.J. McCray (knee) have been limited.
Kelly was asked what he looks for from his quarterbacks during practice. "You look at precision," Kelly answered. "How well are they operating. What's their decision making process? Are they hanging too long on a read? Are they quick to move on if in their progression one or two is covered? How quickly do they get to three? Do they get stuck? Do they get caught on 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 holding the ball too long? Part of it is getting the ball out on time. It's a timing based offense in terms of getting the ball out. So those are things that you can observe."
Kelly went on to say that he has been impressed by what he has seen out of both Blaine Gabbert and Colin Kaepernick, especially considering that the latter did not get the reps in the spring due to his rehab from injury. "For him to come in and step in for his first couple of days and done what he's done, that's been very impressive to us," said Kelly. The coaching staff has also been high on Gabbert because he was the one that was getting the majority of the reps in practices prior to training camp. "I think it's a real healthy competition," added Kelly.
Kelly also pointed out that it is really good to have depth at the quarterback position because very rarely does one guy make it through the entire season. The team has not yet decided who will start the 49ers' first exhibition game. They likely will not make that call until after their joint-practice with the Houston Texans.
Kelly stated that the team's defensive backs have been around the ball a lot during training camp, which is a good sign for the team's defense. He stated that some of the younger guys may be fighting beyond five yards, which is not allowed. For that reason, Kelly would love to have some officials in there at practice. The team will have some officials at practice during a couple of days next week.
Kelly felt that CB Rashard Robinson has been very competitive. "He's got a really good skill set," said Kelly. "He's got some physicality and the line of scrimmage, but he's got speed and some savvy to match routes once he gets locked up with a receiver."
Kelly said that he has been pleased with the defensive line and that they have done a really good job. He also complimented the team's running backs, defensive backs, and outside linebackers.
He also feels that rookie QB Jeff Driskel is really coming along. He has his good plays and his bad plays. The coaching staff wants to expose him to as much as they can so they can reduce his mistakes.
"He's obviously the alpha dog on that defense and sets a tone for everybody, just in how he conducts himself and everything that he does," said Kelly of ILB NaVorro Bowman, who recently signed a four-year contract extension. "I was very excited to find out that he's going to be here for a long time. That's the type of person he is and that's the type of people you want to build your defense around. That's the type of person you want to build your organization around."