Day One Practice Notes from Beat Writers

Aug 1, 2015 at 9:30 PM


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You can view our Updates from Practice at Levi's Stadium story to see what the beat writers for the San Francisco 49ers had to say as the first day of training camp for the team was taking place.

Now that the practice - which took place tonight following the Charlie Wedemeyer All-Star Charity High School Football Game at Levi's Stadium - is over, here is what some of the team beat writers had to say about the session.

Cam Inman of The Mercury News:

Colin Kaepernick made proper use of his new wide receiver, Torrey Smith. They connected on a deep pass into the right side of the end zone (against Marcus Cromartie's coverage) to draw the first loud applause from the couple thousand fans in attendance. Even better was a one-handed grab Smith made on a 20-yard pass near the right sideline, right in front of an applauding general manager Trent Baalke.

Bowman wore a brace on his reconstructed left knee and, on one play, swiftly blitzed past right guard Marcus Martin for a clean shot on Kaepernick, if Bowman wanted to take it.

Rookie outside linebacker Eli Harold showed high intensity in matching up against Joe Staley in a one-on-one drill.

Erik Pears lined up as the first-string right tackle, as expected, and didn't make a sterling first impression. He started off one-on-one drills by getting planted on his backside by Ahmad Brooks.


Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area:

Bowman, lining up at his familiar inside linebacker position, came up the middle on a blitz and put a quick spin move on offensive lineman Marcus Martin. Bowman discarded Martin and ended up immediately in the face of quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

The 49ers are placing a major emphasis on breaking the huddle with at least 22 seconds on the play clock. Other than a couple of times when there were 17 seconds left, Tomsula was pleased with the tempo

Gabbert was intercepted twice during the practice.

Tight end Blake Bell, a fourth-round draft pick, had a good practice, including a catch of a deep seam route from Blaine Gabbert, which was dropped in behind linebacker Eli Harold.

Colin Kaepernick had an inconsistent night, but he did hook up with deep target Torrey Smith on his best throw of the practice. Kaepernick dropped a perfect 45-yard down the right sideline to Smith, who had a couple steps on Cromartie.

Tight end Vernon Davis dropped an accurate Kaepernick throw during team work.


Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee:

[DeAndrew White] had several nice catches including a nearly length-of-field reception at the very end of practice when just the rookies and first-year players were still on the field.

Reggie Bush did not take part in the practice. Jim Tomsula said he noticed the veteran was tight after Friday's conditioning test and did not want to risk an injury. Darnell Dockett (ACL) and Aaron Lynch (?) also seemed to be held out of practice.

Boone spent time at left tackle with the second-string unit. That is, the 49ers seem to be grooming him to be Staley's backup.

First-round draft pick Arik Armstead lined up at left defensive end with the third-string defense. He looked very good during one-on-one pass rush drills...

Punter Bradley Pinion boomed one of his kickoffs out of the back of the end zone.

[Marcus] Martin did not have a great practice.


Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle:

Cornerback Jimmie Ward, who missed the offseason program with a broken foot, only participated in individual drills, which he ran at half-speed.

With Wilhoite sidelined, inside linebacker Nick Moody lined up alongside NaVorro Bowman and knifed in front of tight end Vance McDonald to intercept a short pass from Blaine Gabbert.


Grant Cohn of The Press Democrat:

[Eli] Harold faked to the outside and then beat Staley to the inside. Later during team drills Harold looped around the inside and tagged backup quarterback Blaine Gabbert for the "sack."

[Nick Moody] intercepted a pass intended for Vance McDonald during one-on-one drills. McDonald ran a quick out route but couldn't shake Moody. Gabbert tried to force a pass to the tight end, and Moody reached out and picked it off.

[Blake Bell] made four catches during team drills, including two deep ones down the middle of the field.


Ryan Sakamoto of Niner News:

The player known as the "Belldozer," Bell put on a show in the first practice as he lined up at tight-end and H-Back. From catching passes on 7-yard out-routes to going across the middle on a 15-yard hitch, Bell proved he can be a valuable asset in the 49ers passing game if called upon.

The first-team offense consisted of QB Colin Kaepernick, RB Carlos Hyde, FB Bruce Miller, LT Joe Staley, LG Alex Boone, C Joe Looney, RG Marcus Martin, RT Erik Pears, TE Vernon Davis, WR Anquan Boldin and WR Torrey Smith. It should be noted that Kilgore will likely garner the starting role at center once he returns to the lineup.

The first-team defense consisted of LDE Glenn Dorsey, RDE Quinton Dial, NT Ian Williams, ROLB Aldon Smith, LOLB Ahmad Brooks, LILB NaVorro Bowman, RILB Nick Moody (for ILB Michael Wilhoite), RCB Shareece Wright, LCB Tramaine Brock, FS Eric Reid, and SS Antoine Bethea.


Turf Troubles

Another big story that is gaining a lot of traction was the poor condition of the field as practice went on. Numerous beat writers pointed out the issue, which the 49ers had to deal with last season. The team is scheduled to have their first eight practices at Levi's Stadium.

Head coach Jim Tomsula said after tonight's practice that he expects to practice at Levi's Stadium again tomorrow, but may move if the sod on the field is not safe.
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