Things became more competitive between the offense and defense during a night practice at 49ers Training Camp presented by HP. Following two days of dominance by Vic Fangio’s crew, the 49ers offense rebounded to make a number of plays against last year’s second-best scoring defense.
For starters, San Francisco’s starting offense punched in a touchdown from two-yards out in a live, short-yardage goal-line period. Coincidentally, the touchdown came from converted tight end Demarcus Dobbs who was wearing a No. 40 practice jersey. No official word on a potential uniform change, but Dobbs got behind Patrick Willis’ coverage to haul in a 3-yard pass from Alex Smith in the back right corner of the end zone.
The second-team defense did its part to stop Colin Kaepernick and the second-team offense on the second short-yardage goal-line drive. The third-team offense, however, picked up another score when Kendall Hunter plunged in from 1-yard on third-down and goal. It’s worth noting that Scott Tolzien and Josh Johnson also took second-team reps in later periods of practice.
Let’s take a look at the top highlights from Saturday evening.
-Mike Iupati was absent again from practice, presumably to spend more time with his newborn child.
-Special teams period saw the group work on coffin-corner punting. A.J. Jenkins worked with the gunners while Ted Ginn Jr., Kyle Williams and LaMichael James fielded punts on the adjacent practice field.
-Wide receiver-defensive back one-on-ones were competitive on both sides. Chris Culliver failed to record an interception for the fourth consecutive practice, but did record a pass breakup on Johnson’s deep in route intended for Brett Swain during the period. On the far field, tight end Delanie Walker beat Willis on a go route while linebackers and running backs. Jenkins made his best reception of camp in the period, hauling in a deep sideline route as he was interfered with by Tramaine Brock. Chris Owusu closed out the period with a nice catch off a double-move route. Randy Moss even chimed in with praise towards the undrafted wideout.
-The opening red zone period saw complete jubilation from Dobbs’ touchdown catch and Hunter’s short touchdown run. The second-team defense, however, was stopped at the goal-line when Anthony Dixon picked up 1-yard on a third-and-goal carry from the 4-yard line.
-Two-minute offense saw Johnson work with the second-team and complete a 20-yard pass to tight end Konrad Reuland and a 10-yard comeback to Jenkins at the expense of Brock. A hand to the face penalty on guard Derek Hall, called by Harbaugh himself, ended the drill for Johnson and the second-team.
-Things fared better for the offense in a later move the ball period. Alex Smith and the first-team unit picked up four first downs to set up a field goal attempt from David Akers.
-Red zone 7-on-7 work late in practice saw Smith complete short touchdowns to Williams and Moss against the first-team defense. Williams scored on a slant pattern against Tarell Brown, while Moss’ score came on a slant route against Carlos Rogers.
-In a team period from midfield, Scott Tolzien’s pass was tipped at the line and intercepted by starting outside linebacker Ahmad Brooks. Other highlights from team periods were provided by Perrish Cox, who knocked down an unsuspecting Dixon on a run play and later recorded a pass breakup to close out one of the final team periods.
-One funny observation from post practice involved the rookie wideouts. Jenkins, Owusu, Nathan Palmer and Brian Tyms sprinted to the juggs machine to catch passes before Vernon Davis and Moss could get there first.
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