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49ers training camp: defense bullies Garoppolo in final practice before Denver

The 49ers held their final practice just before they were scheduled to board a plane to Denver.

Kyle Shanahan’s crew will join the Broncos for their annual week of joint-practices before the two meet in a preseason matchup Monday night. As the team gets ready for Denver, Jimmy Garoppolo was not exactly feeling ‘mile-high’ after Wednesday’s practice.

Defense dominates 11-on-11’s

Garoppolo: 37 snaps

Nick Mullens: 21 snaps

  • 11-for-14 passing (78%)
  • One touchdown pass to Kendrick Bourne
  • Mullens ran for a touchdown in his fifth series
  • Completed passes to Breida (x1), Hurd (x2), James (x3), Wilds (x1), Bourne (x3), Austin Walter (x1)
  • Ran the ball with Jeff Wilson Jr. (x2), Hurd (x1), Wilds (x2)

C.J. Beathard: 11 snaps

  • 4-for-7 passing (57%)
  • One touchdown pass to Bourne
  • Completed passes to Hurd (x1), Daniel Helm (x1), Shawn Poindexter (x1), Bourne (x1)
  • Ran the ball with Wilds (x2), Walter (x2)

Garoppolo’s struggles

The theme throughout most of 49ers training camp has been the defense outperforming the offense. It took a while for the offense to get going, which it eventually did, but still, it has yet to have any consistency against its defensive counterpart.

Garoppolo’s interception-heavy practice on Wednesday was not a fluke.

His first interception (Tartt) was tipped up in the air by his receiver before landing in the hands of the opposing safety. Aside from that one unlucky interception, the rest was mostly on Garoppolo.

Whether there was miscommunication, or 49ers receivers running the wrong routes, the defensive secondary made Garoppolo look silly. So silly that Garoppolo was intercepted on five-straight passing attempts towards the end of practice.

Shanahan addressed practice and the alarming performance from his franchise quarterback:

“He threw it to the wrong team five plays in a row. I was a defensive coach today, so I was pumped. But no, the defense did great today and obviously he struggled. You hope to never have a day like that, but I don’t think it’s ever not happened to anyone. When you do that, you hope you can practice long enough and give him a chance to play out of it and use it as an opportunity that hopefully you can do in a game. Hopefully you don’t have five in the game, but you can play yourself out of two in a row or something like that. I thought he did play better at the end of the two-minute drive and in the red zone. We hit a rough spot. I was happy for the defense, but the offense is going to have about a day and a half to think about it.”


  • Safety Jimmie Ward returned to practice for the first time since breaking his collarbone in OTA’s on May 22nd. Shanahan gave an update on Ward’s status:

“Coming off a collarbone, we’re trying to ease him in to when he can hit. We know Jimmie is going to hit every single second he has a chance to so we’ve got to protect him from himself a little bit.”

  • Rookie linebacker Dre Greenlaw was held out of practice Wednesday, with what Shanahan described as a “stinger.”
  • Tight end George Kittle did not practice Wednesday as he deals with some calf tightness. He is day-to-day.
  • Defensive end Dee Ford will not practice or play this week, per Shanahan. He is reportedly “close” to making a return, and is on track to return the following week.
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