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49ers Training Camp Day 2 Breakdown: Defense

Rohan Chakravarthi
Jul 28, 2022 at 5:20 PM

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The San Francisco 49ers continued training camp practices on Thursday, marking the second time since June that players hit the field with their teammates for a 75-minute practice that involved individual drills, team drills, 7-on-7s, and some 11-on-11s as well.

RELATED: 49ers Training Camp Day 2 Breakdown: Offense

As it was the first day of training camp, pads weren't on. They're likely to come on during Monday's practice, however; the exact date is unknown currently.

The 49ers' starters faced one change on Thursday, as defensive tackle Kevin Givens took Arik Armstead's spot with the first-team defense, as Armstead wasn't at practice.


Defensive Line

The defensive line looked as good as advertised on Thursday, as they dominated the offensive line throughout scrimmages, with defensive ends Nick Bosa and Drake Jackson standing out.

Once again, Javon Kinlaw was not a participant during scrimmages, although he was practicing during the individual and positional drills.

With Armstead out, defensive lineman Charles Omenihu took his spot on the interior in pass-rushing situations, and that could be his potential role in 2022 as he enters his second season with the 49ers.

Rookie edge rusher Drake Jackson stood out, creating pressures on the edge, beating backup right tackle Justin Skule and starter Jaylon Moore on different plays, while also recording a shared sack with newly-signed Robert Nkemdiche, who had a good day as well.

Additionally, the 49ers' run defense was strong today, adding to a phenomenal day by the defensive line unit.

The battle in the trenches will be something to watch as pads come on sure.


The linebacker rotations remained the same as yesterday, with Al-Shaair being the linebacker replaced by cornerback Darqueze Dennard in nickel situations to start.

1st Team
SLB Azeez Al-Shaair
MLB Fred Warner
WLB Dre Greenlaw

2nd Team
SLB Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles
MLB Curtis Robinson
WLB Oren Burks

3rd Team
SLB Segun Olubi
MLB Jeremiah Gemmel
WLB Marcelino McCrary-Ball


Yesterday, Emmanuel Moseley was the best player on the field, recording two pass breakups. Today, it was Charvarius Ward, who allowed just one pass completed in five targets, while recording two pass breakups.

Here were the cornerback rotations:

1st Team
CB Charvarius Ward
CB Emmanuel Moseley
NB Darqueze Dennard

2nd Team
CB Ambry Thomas
CB Deommodore Lenoir
NB Samuel Womack

3rd Team
CB Ka'Darr Hollman
CB Tariq Castro-Fields
NB Qwuantrezz Knight

After starting at slot cornerback throughout the offseason, Dennard continues to get all the first-team reps at the position two days in and is the current favorite to start.

The slot cornerback battle will be intriguing, given the strength of the outside cornerbacks, and this secondary certainly has more to it than the one that was present last season.


Talanoa Hufanga and Jimmie Ward were the starters, once again, at safety, with the USC product being the first one out on the field to begin practice on Thursday, coming out 45 minutes before practice started.

Here were the safety rotations:

1st Team
SS Talanoa Hufanga
FS Jimmie Ward

2nd Team
FS Tarvarius Moore/Dontae Johnson
SS George Odum

3rd Team
FS Tayler Hawkins
SS Leon O'Neal

Ward and Hufanga both made plays on Thursday, with the former picking off Lance on a pass intended for Aiyuk, while Hufanga made an impressive pass-breakup on a well-placed ball by Lance intended for Ray-Ray McCloud.
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