The offseason program is officially over, and after workouts and team meetings today, the San Francisco 49ers get a little over a month off.
Football is Fun Again
Offensive lineman Joe Staley is entering his 11th year in the NFL, and it’s no secret that the last two have not exactly been a walk in the park. After 5-11 and 2-14 seasons, it’s understandable that a day at the office was not as fun as it once was. But all that has changed with his new head coach.
“This might sound kind of bad, but I’m enjoying football again, said Staley. “I’m excited to come to work every single day. In the last couple years, there were days where I couldn’t honestly say that. So that’s awesome to have that feeling back.”
Staley talked about how open and transparent Kyle Shanahan with the players. He’s also a football genius and it shows in every team meeting.
“I just kind of looked over to [Daniel] Kilgore next to me in the team meeting [today], said Staley. “I’m like, ‘This is awesome.’ You kind of get chills almost because it’s cool to see football talked about that way instead of, ‘Hey, you got to do your job.’ It’s like, ‘Okay, yes, sir.’ Why do I have to do my job? Okay, this is why. Because the play’s designed for me to win, I’m the reason why this play’s successful.”
49ers fans are with you Joe. San Francisco has good reason to be excited about football again.
Offensive Losses, Defensive Gains
That being said, the 49ers’ offense still has some work to do. After a better day on Tuesday, the entire offense struggled with Brian Hoyer, Matt Barkley, and C.J. Beathard all throwing interceptions. All came while the Niners were practicing having 70 seconds left in the quarter.
On the plus side, Eric Reid, Will Davis, and Chanceller James were the beneficiaries of these missteps, respectively. The defense is coming together and they celebrated the INTs like it was the Super Bowl, or at least a big regular season game.
It’s clear that the passing game still needs to work, but a lot of that is chemistry and that comes with time.
“That’s why it’s important for us to get together at some point between now and training camp,” said Hoyer. “We’ve thrown a lot of footballs together over the last nine weeks. Whether it was phase one, phase two or in practice, those are the reps that you get. So, that’s why I said it will be good. I’ll take a week off from throwing. I won’t throw for a whole week and then I’ll get back into a routine and then I’ll meet up with those guys and then all of a sudden it’ll be training camp and I think we’ll be right where we should be.”
Carlos Hyde does not disagree.
“I think that we need to work on our chemistry there…get comfortable with each other.”
Hoyer did connect with Pierre Garcon and Hyde for touchdown passes today.
Wrapping It Up
Shanahan expects Reuben Foster to be “be more than ready to go by training camp.” Here’s hoping he’s right!
Mike Shanahan was at practice again today and the younger Shanahan said he is able to use his dad as another set of eyes.
The team made it out with no major injuries. Brock Coyle gave his teammates a scare when he went down yesterday, but ultimately, he was ok.
In case there was any confusion on what exactly play-action is, Carlos Hyde is here to help.
“I mean you have to sell a fake just like if we were actually running the ball. You want the defense to come up and get the linebackers to come up so we can have lanes to throw the ball. The play fakes basically take part in it. It’s a big part of the offense…I think if you’re watching the game and you see somebody faking, you understand football, you’d say that was a good fake…The average fan should…understand the game. The play action’s a big part of it.”
Training camp is just over a month away. Who is ready for football? Go Niners!