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49ers Training Camp Day 1 Breakdown: Offense

Rohan Chakravarthi
Jul 26, 2023 at 6:00 PM--

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Day 1 of the San Francisco 49ers training camp is officially over, as head coach Kyle Shanahan conducted a light, padless practice where the team installed primary shorter-area concepts, as well as various facets of the run game.

Both the offense and the defense had their moments on Day 1, with a ton of spotlight being shined on the quarterbacks.

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I broke down every throw that Trey Lance and Sam Darnold threw, both in 7-on-7s and 11-on-11s, grading each of their performances on Day 1 of training camp Wednesday.

Running Backs

As I shared in my "standouts" article, Tyrion Davis-Price was arguably the best running back of the day, looking fluid in his movements and being a downhill runner when getting carries, while also catching a pass from Trey Lance on a wheel route.

Jordan Mason had an up-and-down day, continuing to showcase his hard running style, but struggling with ball security, as he dropped a pass and recorded a fumble on the ground that appeared to be forced by linebacker Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles.

Running back Christian McCaffrey suited up and was present in individual drills, but did not practice in team drills, which was the case with many veterans. As a result, Mason and running back Elijah Mitchell saw an equal split of the first-team reps, with Davis-Price seeing increased action as well.

Mitchell had a regular day, with not much to show for it due to the lack of pads and a few stuffed runs to the right side.

Undrafted rookie Ronald Awatt saw the majority of the third-team carries, while Khalan Laborn flashed in his one opportunity with a strong rush for about 10 yards.

It'll be interesting to see if Davis-Price eats into some first-team reps should he continue his level of play and McCaffrey be limited in team drills for rest.

Wide Receivers

Brandon Aiyuk earned a welcome on my "standouts" list, leading the way with two catches, including an impressive high-point over cornerback Deommodore Lenoir.

Deebo Samuel didn't convert on either of his two opportunities, but looks in good shape, which is the best news for the wideback, who deemed this is the best he's felt since 2019 after practice.

Danny Gray saw action with both of the top offensive teams, but was unable to convert on either of his opportunities as well, failing to get two feet in bounds on a well-placed ball from Trey Lance near the sideline, and having a pass broken up from Talanoa Hufanga on a potential touchdown opportunity, as the wideout had beaten Ambry Thomas deep.

It was a lighter day for the wide receivers, as the 49ers' offensive install focused on shorter-area throws, meaning more touches for the tight ends and running backs.

Tight Ends

George Kittle was another player limited during team drills, allowing Charlie Woerner and Ross Dwelley to split first-team reps on the offensive side.

Dwelley was the recipient of a few checkdown throws, catching all of his passes, while rookies Cameron Latu and Brayden Willis both saw action in the passing game as well.

Willis caught everything thrown his way, while Latu seemed to drop a pass after failing to separate from third-string safety Tayler Hawkins on an out-route, where Lance had thrown a solid pass, hitting the hands of the tight end.

The tight-end battle will certainly be one to watch, as the rookies look to challenge the veterans for roster spots, but, like at other positions, the 49ers are making the younger players work for their extended reps.

Offensive Line

Trent Williams was in uniform on the first day of practice, although he did not participate in team drills, which led Jaylon Moore and Leroy Watson to take over as the top left tackles on the day.

The 49ers used Jake Brendel, Jon Feliciano, Nick Zakelj, and Corey Luciano as snappers in pre-practice warmups, indicating those were players they're looking at to compete at center, but also gave an opportunity to Keith Ismael, who saw second and third-team reps at center today.

Feliciano continued to work at guard as well with the backups, with him and Nick Zakelj both seeing action at the position with the second team.

The offensive line didn't have the greatest day, as they were susceptible to some well-timed blitzes from Steve Wilks, generating pressure on the quarterbacks, as well as a sack from Austin Bryant on Sam Darnold.

Additionally, several runs were stuffed at the line of scrimmage, although it's too hard to judge that portion of the game without pads being present.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.

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