Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Transcripts: What Kyle Shanahan and Jimmy Garoppolo said about the 49ers’ first practice with the Chargers

Aug 19, 2021 at 2:59 PM--

San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo spoke with reporters after today's joint practice with the Los Angeles Chargers. Here is everything they had to say.

Transcript provided by the San Francisco 49ers Communications staff.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan

How'd it go?

"I thought it went good. I like that it didn't seem like there were any fights. I wasn't over there the whole time, so that was the first goal. We didn't want to have to kick anyone out today, so at least we all got to practice, didn't have to send anyone home early. It's always different when you go against a different team because there's different types of practices, different tempos and I think it took us a little bit to get used to that but I was happy overall."

What did you think about the pass blocking? I mean they've got a pretty nice defensive line. Are you a little bothered by your pass blocking?

"I mean, I never want to give up some sacks and there in two minutes we gave up a couple, which is always tough. I always want to challenge our guys to get better. We did do a little bit better today, but nothing to overreact about. We're missing a couple of guys too, but we also got to get rid of the ball."

What are your thoughts on Los Angeles Chargers Head Coach Brandon Staley? And in which ways is his team taking on his identity?

"I just know Brandon, going against him last year, and he's a hell of a coach. I mean, the scheme that he has, the scheme that he runs, how detailed it is, how he gets his players to play for him. It was evident on tape last year. You can see it already today and the guy is a hell of a coach."

What does it do for the O-Line to have Former 49ers OL Joe Staley out there working with them?

"We'll see as we get going forward. Yesterday was his first day working. It was our off day and he was so amped up. He was kind of annoying us all day, wanting to do more. But I'm pumped that he's here. He's passionate about football. He loves football. It'll be nice to have him in the room. He's never been on this side before, so he's probably going to be a little sensitive realizing how we're not always nice with what we say behind closed doors, but we'll see how he does. I know he'll be opinionated and I'm just pumped to have home."

What was going on with you and #44 Chargers LB Kyzir White?

"He was just, he was excited. Sometimes they get excited and I told him to save his energy a little bit. And there was this one tackle and he was actually real cool. I went over and said, 'We're not taking guys to the ground,' and he didn't mean to. It was cool after that."

What is Joe's role and how long will he be around?

"He's going to be here this week. He lives pretty close to here so he just wanted to come up with the week and try to see what coaching is about. And I know he's got a passion for it and I know he wants to be around football. He wants to he decide if he wants to work this many hours before he jumps into it with his family. So, he'll get a look at that this week."

How much does it help your offense to go against the Chargers defense?

"It helps a ton. First of all, some of the players they got. They got some real talent over there and anytime you can go against different things than what you've been going against, helps a ton. We've been up against a four-down front. And now we've had every front possible today. Some different styles and different techniques. You get use to one type of technique and it takes a while to get ready for the others. You try to do that on a Wednesday or Thursday practice with cards and stuff to simulate, which sometimes takes up to the second quarter to get used to. To be able to scrimmage against guys and to be able to do it here for two days is very helpful."

You mentioned QB Trey Lance was under some pressure. What did you think of Trey today?

"I'll see more on the tape. I challenge the offensive line big time, but I'm also going to challenge him to get rid of the ball. You got to know where those outlets are and how to get rid of it. He didn't have the most time in everything, but it's kind of our standard with things and how fast you've got to play and how not just athletically, but with your mind, you can't hesitate. You got to get rid of it because you get a sack in a two minute, look at the percentages, it's pretty much over. And it's not going to be a lot of great protection there. So, it's good to give him some of this experience without being in a game. So, we're just going to keep challenging him hard and I can't wait to watch the tape in about an hour with him."

How do you evaluate #11 WR Brandon Aiyuk?

"Brandon? Yeah, I think he's coming along. We've challenged him hard like we do everyone on our team. What's been nice about him, he's had some good days and some bad days and he keeps coming back the next day harder. I mean, he's been up to the challenge, working his butt off the way he's blocking, the way he's working. Regardless of how he does each day, if he keeps that attitude, he will only get better."

What's the update on T Trent Williams?

"Trent, he was going to go to this day. He had a little swelling in his knees so we drained it out. He's going to take this week off and hopefully he'll be ready for the Las Vegas week."

Do you have any long-term concerns?

"No, since we think he'll be ready for the Las Vegas week. Hopefully that won't be too long."

QB Jimmy Garoppolo hit WR Travis Benjamin on the long pass, he missed a couple other ones. Has he been working on the deep ball and how's it coming along?

"I think we have had a little more opportunities in this camp. I mean, he works on everything, so I'm not saying we've over done that. We've worked on that as much as anything else. Had a couple different coverages today, which gave us a couple opportunities. He let that one rip to Travis, two to Travis. The third one, he waited a little too long, which then they were all waiting down there. He's probably just got to check that down and force that one a little bit, but I was happy with that look."

You've said earlier in camp that if Trey plays really really well maybe we start him Week 1. Is he kind of on that trajectory at this point?

"I'll answer what I think you're trying to ask. They're competing their assess off. They're doing a good job. It's not about one guy versus the other guy. It's about how good can Trey be, how good can Jimmy be. I think both of them, when you go through camp, you go through games, you go through practices, it's up and down throughout the whole thing. So that's why I don't sit and go 'Who's ahead of the other, what's going on,' after each practice. They both bring different elements to our team. Both of them, I believe, can play at a high level and I'm trying to see which one does that the best for us."

Can you see Trey getting more reps with the ones or is it going to be same?

"No, I'd like him to get some reps with the ones eventually. I kind of reevaluate that after each practice. Not just so he can get with our ones, but also, so he can go against the one defense and stuff. So, we'll see if we do some of that tomorrow. If I do, it'd be more trying to get him some reps, verse [Chargers DE Joey] Bosa and [Chargers S] Derwin [James] and some other guys too because there's definitely a difference."

What has to happen before you are ready to put him out there with the ones?

"Just what we think it is the best chance to win."

What'd you see from Derwin today?

"Just same thing you see from every time that he's out there. He's the man. He's as good as it gets. Coming out of college, we loved him. I just love how carries himself. You know how talented he is but just talking to the guy, how he acts out there, you can tell he's a special guy, as a person and as a talent. So, you guys got a good one there."

What have you seen out of T Mike McGlinchey and what more in terms of pass blocking do you need to see out of him?

"Same thing I've kind of said about each player, it's up and down throughout all camp. I know it was nice for him to get some reps against some real good guys today. I'll see it when I see the tape, but I just want him to keep getting better."

I know you don't game plan for a practice, but with Joey Bosa out there and Derwin James, do you almost have to acknowledge that or do you have to scheme for that a little bit?

"Not really. If they really were going to hit the quarterback and stuff, then we would. But they just run by him and we know it's a sack, so we're not going to go out of our way to just handle that. We're trying to get the work in with our players and stuff. And that's the biggest thing with all this stuff, it's fun to go against other guys. Guys want to get amped up and make it a big deal, which I get that it is. But the main thing is getting better throughout all this. So, like, everything that we decide on, it's how to put these guys in a position that allows them to learn something, whether it's good or bad. So, the better the season is, it's not really about winning the day."

I know Bosa hit the ball once. Was he not supposed to do that?

"No, he's not. Our Bosa didn't hit their ball today. I don't know why he did that."

Do you want to see Lance with the starter before you decide what quarterback gives you the best chance to win?

"I mean, I don't have to decide that, I don't need that to make that decision. But yeah, I'd like to get him some reps with the starters, not just to be with those guys, but our ones go versus ones. You get a little more challenging looks going versus the one defense"

Why are the Chargers a good team to do the joint practice with?

"You definitely don't want to do in your division. I'd rather avoid the NFC. You want to do it with someone on the other side and I'd love to do it with someone that is different than what you practice against every day. And they have a really good scheme that's kind of the opposite of ours. So, I think it really helps in that way."

Lance lacks a little bit with his footwork and is that common being in his first camp and how did he do today?

"Yeah, he did better. Yeah. That's extremely common. I kind of watched all the rookie quarterbacks around the league and when they get in there, it's their first NFL game, just like a lot of rookie every position, they get in there and they resort back to survive with what they've done their whole career. And sometimes that's a little different at the NFL level. You can't just go out there and play. You've got to be exact in your details, exact in your techniques. And the more you can do, that more you make it automatic, then you don't lose it in the heat of battle. But that's kind of the story for all of them.

What is WR Jalen Hurd's health status?

"You guys know, he's been in and out through most of this and he's had some knee soreness. He's got some knee tendonitis. So instead of going one day off and three on, we just made the decision a couple of days ago to shut him down for the week. We'll make sure he gets at least seven days off. I think it was five days before that. So, it's going to be a little over 10 days. Hopefully when we get to Las Vegas week, that'll be the right answer. I hope he'll be a little bit better."

Did DL Nick Bosa make any plea to try to practice against familiar guys?

"No. I know how bad he wants to, but Nick is very thorough and thought out on this whole plan. Every day Nick's got to hold himself back and everything, and we're doing it too, but we've got a plan. Nick sticking it and it's smart that he is."

Is Hurd's tendinitis from his previous ACL injury?

"I believe so. I'm not a doctor."

When you're making cuts, as it's happening. How difficult is it when you have injured players?

"No, it's a huge challenge. And that's what I was trying to explain the couple of weeks ago, but that's the hard thing with the NFL. [CB Emmanuel] Moseley tweaked his hamstring. So, he's out for a week. Would have loved to have kept four quarterbacks and kept [Former QB] Josh Rosen. But when you've got to cut five guys this year so much earlier, and then you lose one corner, you don't have enough guys for practice. Sometimes you can't keep a fourth quarterback. And it goes that way for everything. Injured guys, especially guys who can play, guys that have been like that like [DL] Dee Ford. Guys like Jalen. We all know how good they can be and how much they can help us. But you've got to play of all that in account because the 53 is tough and you want to make sure you don't lose other players that can help us throughout the year."

With so much discussion about the quarterback stuff, are looking at this? I mean, it seems like you're pretty at ease and you're pretty relaxed, not stressed about making this decision. Is this for you, just a really good situation to be have two guys?

"Yeah, I can't get caught up in everything else. I get why it's fun and that's a decision that everyone interested in. I can't make it about that. I'm just really excited that, I think we've always had a quarterback like Jimmy who can give you the chance to win the Super Bowl. And when he hasn't been in, we've really struggled. And I also think the drafted a guy who can get there also. And yeah, that makes me very excited. However that plays out, whatever gives us the best chance to win, is definitely what I'm trying to focus on. I'm also excited that I think we have some depth there too, where regardless of what happens I know we have other answers."

At this point do you think you're going to have three quarterbacks?

"I would like to. We've got three guys who can play, so I would definitely like to, but that's, the tough thing about the 53. Where do you go extra at another position? How do you go under? Are you going to lose guys? What's the practice squad? If it's as simple as we have three quarterbacks that can help us, then yes we will."

How has CB Jason Verrett looked during training camp?

"He's been great. I love JV. I'm sure he's thought of very highly here too. The way he carries himself. Somewhat of what I was talking about with Derwin, you can see special guys on the field and how talented they are, but you also see what's special when you get around someone like that and know how they are. He's a bulldog. He's competitive as can be. He's a tough a guy as we have out there. I think one of the better leaders in this team, even though you don't hear him talk all the time."

WR Jauan Jennings got a touchdown here in the end zone. How can a big receiver like that help you guys in high-leverage situations like in the red zone or on third and short?

"When he plays big, which he does. So he does both. And that's why Jauan is giving himself a chance to make this team and giving himself a chance to help us. Because, yes, he does have some size, but it's also his mindset too. He's aggressive in everything he does. He comes off the ball as hard as anyone, he attacks that ball. There's no difference between a run plan and pass play for him. And that mentality is why he was successful in college. That's why he's trying to prove himself in the league the same way."

Do you highlight that in film to your players, like the way he plays?

"Yeah, definitely. I highlight stuff every single morning to the team. So, whoever gives me the most examples, I always show. Jauan's had a lot of clips here in the last few days."

Will you do Garoppolo and the starters through the first quarter?

"I don't know yet and I mean that. How much you get off these practices, I never decide before how a scrimmage. I want to see what they got here today. I really want to have a big one tomorrow. And then I evaluate where guys are and how hard the workload was for them. see if the game is worth for them and who needs to do it."

You got a guard in the second round, was it a direct message to your previous guard OL Dan Brunskill? How did he respond? Did you talk to him and say 'Hey obviously you are going to be competing?' How has he responded to that?

"I don't know. I never talked to him about it because I don't look at it like that. We're just drafting him to replace Brunskill. I thought he played at a high-level last year, whether it was at guard, whether it was at center. He played at a high level for us at tackle the year before when we had some guys go down. You want to make sure we have our five best players out there. And when you've got some versatility of that, I don't think anyone looks at it as just a replacement for them. We'll see how it all shakes out. But it was tough for [OL Aaron] Banks to get injured, missing these two weeks. He's a guy we believe in a lot, but he needs to play too. We've got some other guys with a lot more experience. Hopefully we get him back, at least in this last week or so of preseason, so we can give him a chance to play."

And what is his injury?

"Shoulder. Shoulder something. I think it's a minor AC sprain. The reason I don't say that stuff is because I don't ask. It's one to two weeks."

QB Jimmy Garoppolo

With Los Angeles Chargers S Derwin James Jr., Los Angeles Chargers OLB Joey Bosa a lot of Playmakers, what was it like to go up against that defense today?

"It was good. It was a good challenge for us. I'm always a fan of seeing new looks, new defenses, all that stuff. And I thought we handled it well. It was competitive all the way through, and I love this stuff."

Years ago you were the young quarterback trying to challenge and earn a spot on the team. Now you've got another young quarterback behind you. How did that change your preparation?

"Honestly, it doesn't too much. I come out here, I'm trying to earn the job the same way as everyone else is. I think it's one of those jobs where you've got to come out and compete every day. And as soon as you stop competing, you're going to find out real quick what the NFL is like. And so, every day I approach it the same, try to have just a consistent mindset and let the chips fall as they may."

You guys were pushing the ball downfield a lot. Is that something that was just there or was that okay, let's try and go deeper a little bit here?

"No, same as every other day, really. When they give us the chances, we've got to take them. Similar to our practices back home, but just we got more chances, I guess, today at it. But yeah, it was, made some plays down the field. It was nice."

Talk about the development for WR Brandon Aiyuk?

"B.A. man, he's come a long way, especially since his rookie year. I think this year he's been more consistent, the fight in him, it's been coming out more and more, a little more personality you see from the guy. And I like to see that, you know, one-on-ones, you see him get pissed off or something like that. And, it's good."

When you see that growth, does that give you more confidence to kind of go at him and know he's going to catch it?

"Yeah. You know, you can kind of see it in a guy's eyes if they have it going that day, if they don't. B.A.'s one of those guys he's just consistent and he brings the same energy every day and those are the guys you want to go into the huddle with."

Was it Joey Bosa the guy who swiped the ball out of your hand?

"He said sorry as he passed me. Yeah, he sounds just like [DL] Nick [Bosa]. It was kind of funny in my head, but you know, you're upset at the time and then you hear him say, sorry, Jim, at the same time, it was just a Bosa thing, I guess."

In another situation, there was some back and forth. I don't think you were involved with it, but then you saw head coach Kyle Shanahan kind of get into it a little bit. Did you see that? Or was that like listening to all that?

"No. I mean, that's why you're out here. You enjoy that stuff. I don't know. That's the competitive nature. And when you go against the same guys and your own team, every single day, it gets monotonous at times. So like I said, it's refreshing to come out here and get a little bit of that."

Kyle said that a lot of quarterbacks sort of revert fundamentally to maybe some bad habits when they get in games or live situations like this. Did you deal with that in your first training camp and what was your mindset and trying to work through it?

"I think all players kind of, it happened not just quarterbacks, but all players, it happens. You know, when the bullets start flying, you just go to your instincts, kind of. And so it's, I don't know, it's one of those things you've got to work through. It takes reps, takes time. I don't know. There's no secret formula to it. You've just got to work through it."

How do you think QB Trey Lance's dealing with it?

"I think Trey's doing good with it. Trey is very, like I said with B.A., he's very consistent, pretty even keeled the whole time. And that's what you want to see out of a young guy."

You've supported Trey and all that and you do so on the sideline, including the touchdown to WR Trent Sherfield. You seemed genuinely excited.

"Our team scored, why wouldn't I? (laughter)"

Obviously you can separate those two things?

"Oh yeah. I mean, you can't worry about those things. I'm excited we scored a touchdown. You know, the team scored a touchdown. It was an exciting moment on the sideline. I think me and [WR Mohamed Sanu Sr.] Mo were kind of standing there. We knew the play and everything and kind of knew what was going to happen. So we were ready for it and it was an exciting moment. I mean, we're out here playing a game. You've got to enjoy it."

Can you take me through the interception in the end zone and what you saw on that play?

"Which one down here. They just dropped deep, trying to remember the play right now. Yeah, they dropped deep. We went underneath, tried to lay it out to the guy when he was breaking out and just left it a little short. But those are the things that you've got to work through."

How is the other RB Trey Sermon doing? How is he developing?

"He's been doing really well. He had a couple of nice pickups today in protection, really stood the linebackers up. He's got a long way to go, like all rookies, but he's coming along real nicely."

On one of your big plays it was TE George Kittle pass blocking against Bosa. Everybody doesn't cheer for the pass, they cheer for Kittle blocking. Did you all know that was what had to happen on that play and did you sense that that was going to be a pretty big matchup?

"Yeah. I mean, that's how it goes. I think George locked him up pretty well. I felt him a little bit, but whenever you could get a tight end to block a D-End like that, it's always a good thing."

The Chargers Communications staff also provided transcripts from their own press conferences.

Head coach Brandon Staley

On T Rashawn Slater:

"Rashawn is feeling good, but we still held him out today. He would go if it were up to him. We just wanted to be extra careful, but he's feeling good. You saw him out here today, it was one of those deals. I talked to [49ers Head Coach] Kyle [Shanahan] and he's doing it with a couple of his guys, too. We're just being safe."

On S Nasir Adderley not practicing today:

"Nas is having a migraine issue. We just wanted to make sure that calmed down today. He was going to try and tough it out, but we just wanted to make sure that calmed down before he gets back out here. When that improves, he'll be back out here."

On today's joint practice with the 49ers:

"It felt like a pro atmosphere today. That's a really good team over there — a lot of good players, a lot of good coaches. I felt like this was the perfect environment for us. I'm thankful for the Niners, to [49ers General Manager] John [Lynch] and [Head Coach] Kyle [Shanahan]. I felt like there was a lot of good competition out there today. In all three phases of the game, I felt that the operation was clean. I felt that there was a lot of respect, which is important in these competitive settings. You want to make sure everyone respects each other, respects the game. I felt that was on display, too. I'm proud of that, and I felt like it was an even match today. That's what we're after."

On the expectations for tomorrow's joint practice:

"I think you get your feet on the ground while facing a different team. You get used to their style. Their defense is a lot different than our defense; their offense is a lot different than our offense. You get a feel for that different change of pace. We're going to go over a lot more different situations tomorrow, so you're playing even more field zones, more situations. We're excited to have another crack at it against these guys tomorrow."

On the OLB Joey Bosa:

"I think Joey is a good example of someone who really appreciates learning a new role. Even though his role is going to be similar — he's going to be attacking the quarterback from the edge of our defense — but we're asking him to do things that are new, lining him up in a couple different places. He's just the guy who has really poured into us and we're pouring into him. We're trying to figure out where each and every sweet spot is and I think we're getting closer. I think he feels he's getting closer; he feels like he's been getting into a rhythm this past week and a half. I really feel like he's elevated his game, he's really honing in on his space within the defense. He had a good day out there today. He was really physical, he rushed really well and I'm happy we have him."

On his role during today's practice:

"I was calling defenses today and all the special teams periods. That was important to me. Kyle [Shanahan] and I were calling the game against each other on our field, and then [Offensive Coordinator] Joe [Lombardi] and [49ers Defensive Coordinator] DeMeco [Ryans] were calling on their field. What I'm trying to do is get updates in between plays, but trying to make it as game-like as possible. That was our goal today."

On S Derwin James Jr.:

"He looks like how he looks every time — in command. The energy, his technique; I think he's hitting the sweet spot too. He's running the show out there for us and all that comes with that. Now, he's measuring himself against a really good opponent. We're talking that [49ers] offensive line, [49ers TE George] Kittle, their backs, [49ers WRs] Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk. That's a really good group of guys over there. Their two quarterbacks are outstanding. I feel like Derwin was able to measure himself because this was a game environment today. There may not have been a stadium of 80,000, but what was between the white lines today was like a game. That's what we were after."

On James going against TE George Kittle:

"It just reaffirms his confidence within himself. I think all that he's built within the offseason and during initial training camp is measurable when he puts himself against a premium player, against a premium team. That's going to build even more confidence in his game. I think you could see that out there today. He's in really good shape, I thought that expressed itself today. Derwin is in really good shape, and he played like it today.

On James understanding his play calling:

"That's what I love about him, it's like we've been doing this for 10 years. We're going to keep getting better at it. We're not where we will be, but each day we improve. He's starting to finish my sentences now. He's starting to finish them, then there's an, 'I got you coach.' That's what you want to hear. He's doing an outstanding job with that."

On T Bryan Bulaga and Slater missing camp today:

"Bryan has a little bit of a hip flexor. In a game-week situation, he'd be playing. It kind of flared up in practice the other day so we're just making sure that he's well. And then, Rashawn would've gone today if it were up to him. We kept him out and we look forward to getting him back soon."

On CB Kemon Hall:

"Kemon's competitive. I think he's doing a lot of good things for us. He still needs to play with more consistency, but he's doing a good job on special teams. I think he's a guy that wakes up and tries to improve. He has what it takes. What we're trying to do is get him to play like that every single down in the NFL. And with him still being such a young player, we're fighting hard with him. He's trying and his coaches, [Secondary Coach] D.A. [Derrick Ansley], [Defensive Coordinator] Renaldo [Hill] and [Assistant Secondary Coach] Tommy [Donatell] are doing an outstanding job with him. This was a great test for him today because they had a lot of weapons in the slot. I think that was a test. He's been going against [WR] Keenan [Allen], but now he's against another quality slot group. He had the chance to find out a lot about himself today."

On Hall's ability to contribute on special teams:

"He has this body type that not only makes him a fast defensive back, but he also has strength and power. He can play in some different spots on special teams. We're really looking for him to be a four-phase guy for us. We can also play him in multiple roles on defense because that's how you have to make it. That's how he's going to make it on this team. We're excited to see where he goes these next few weeks."

On 49ers Head Coach Kyle Shanahan:

"Every year since I have been in the NFL, we have played their team. From 2017, we played them twice when I was in Chicago. Denver, we practiced against and played them in the preseason. Then, [with the Rams] we played them twice last year. A lot of the guys I have come to know have worked for him or with him, so we know a lot about each other. With me being with Vic [Fangio] and Kyle and his father [Mike Shanahan] going head to head all those years, a lot of respect. Part of what makes the NFL special is the amount of respect that you have for other people. Although we do not know each other, we have a lot of respect for one another. That's why there's also a lot of respect for [49ers General Manager]John Lynch and the way they do things over there. This is a good environment for us, where we can really measure ourselves against a quality team."

On LB Emeke Egbule not practicing today:

"Yeah, we held him out today. He had something in practice the other day so we are being precautious with him. Trying to get him back next week.

On WR Joe Reed not practicing today:

"Joe Reed has a lower ankle issue that kind of swelled up on him. So, we decided to hold him out. Trying to get him back for the game but don't know. We may have to push him back to next week."

On WR Mike Williams:

"Mike is trending positive. Mike is feeling better. With him, we are trying to push him without pushing him too far. But he has been great — his weight is good, he's been rehabbing well. Looking forward to getting him back on the practice field soon."

On being 'precautions' with S Derwin James Jr.:

"Just making sure we manage his load just like everyone else. Make sure we are taking a look at that GPS every day with him. We have done a great job with him so far. He's feeling energized. He's building that gas tank to where he can be able to say, 'Hey, if I have to play 65 to 75 plays a game, could I do it?' That is where we are at with him, making sure that he's got that baseline conditioning of playing a full game. He looked great out there today."

On OLB Chris Rumph II:

"He has this bruise on his heel that is really uncomfortable. We are just trying to tone that down. He played awesome in the game the other night. Then, came out here and practiced, but we were trying to get his shoe right. Just making sure that kind of calms down. Nothing long-term."

WR Keenan Allen

On competing against 49ers CB Jason Verrett:

"It's all good. We work together in the offseason and we work for these moments, so it's fun all the time."

On Varrett returning from injury:

"Anybody like that who faces adversity is tough, because injuries are tough. To be able to battle back, come back to normal, and play at a high level like the way he did, is solid."

On how often he and Varrett train in the offseason:

"We work out four days a week in the weight room. Then, on a good day, we might get out on the field. Usually, on the field, we do some releases and just one on ones. We pretty much know our thing, we do it a lot."

On WR Josh Palmer:

"Josh is doing a very good job, with as young as he is and how he's able to run routes. He's aggressive, he's friendly with the quarterbacks, and he's precise. That's a good thing from a rookie."

On how 'far along' Palmer is currently compared to when Allen was a rookie:

"He is much further. I wasn't a receiver; I just happened to be good at being a receiver."

On the difference between Palmer and Allen as rookies:

"He's polished. You can tell he's polished and knows what to do. He obviously knows releases, he knows leverage. He just knows how to run routes already."

On how a young receiver improves and develops:

"Knowledge, repetition, and seeing things. DBs will get smarter, DBs will learn how to play their leverage better. You have to have answers to everything, and you'll get it with repetition and film study."

On an increased pace at practice:

"Yeah, there has been a better pace, more lenient to the way we can run routes. We feel more free."

On CB Asante Samuel Jr.:

"I haven't really been in there with him. However, I do know that he is a dog and he has that confidence. He will be able to put those plays behind him and keep playing."

On if it is 'important' to a team's development to conduct joint practices:

"They can be. The preseason games are, too. Don't get me wrong, the practices are important for the mistakes. We practiced the 49ers, but we get to make mistakes against the 49ers that don't matter, so you get to tune those mistakes up, come out here tomorrow and play them again — sharpen those mistakes and play them on Sunday. It's about getting ready for what we want. So, we keep practicing and building every day on what matters."

S Derwin James Jr.

On today's joint practice with the 49ers:

"I feel like we came out here and competed. There was a lot of energy on both sides, but I feel like we got better today."

On competing against another team for the first time since 2019:

"It's big for me. We're going out here going fast. I played against [49ers TE George] Kittle, one of the best tight ends in the league. Their offense is one of the best in the league. Seeing the looks from them only helped me get better."

On the competition level of today's practice:

"I liked it. I was the first one over there against Kittle. He wanted to see how he was against me, and I wanted to give him what he wanted. It was good going against him. He's the best and I feel like I'm the best — why not go against him."

On competing against high-caliber players:

"I want to compete every day. Whoever the best guy is, I want to go against him. That's how I challenge myself and push myself every day."

On the excitement level of practice:

"I feel like I could go again. I can go more. With how we built this practice and everything, I got my legs under me, and I'm ready to go."

On improving individually and as a team:

"I already know I need to come out here and get better every day, be available for my guys. I need to keep building; we have a lot of great talent out here."

On the benefits of joint practice:

"We're putting ourselves through game-like situations. I know this isn't a game, but we're going against a tough team, and I'm just getting better from that."

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