Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
SANTA CLARA – One more week of semi-real football remains (plus another week of practice) before the 49ers will play in an actual, genuine, regular season game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. There’s still plenty yet to come into focus with cutdown day on August 31, and head coach Kyle Shanahan spoke to some of those tough, looming decisions, as well as his assessment of Saturday’s 27-17 preseason win over the Kansas City Chiefs.
Don’t throw that ball, Jimmy
After a shaky, 3-for-6, 32-yard start to the game with a completed first down on a ball thrown behind Kendrick Bourne, an incompletion on a ball thrown behind Marquise Goodwin (and a poor incompletion to Dante Pettis negated by a defensive holding penalty on the other side of the field), Garoppolo snapped into shape and finished 14-for-20 with 188 yards and a touchdown.
He did, however, have an egregious mistake which was failed to be punished. On 2nd-and-3 from the 19-yard line, Garoppolo threw a ball to Pettis in triple coverage which was nearly picked off (the Goodwin incompletion is below, too),
Jimmy Garoppolo looked better today than he did last week when he threw an INT [and had another INT dropped] but he still made some mistakes. He had 2 possible INTs dropped today as well.
On this play, he threw to triple coverage in the redzone.pic.twitter.com/7m4Udgc9Nu
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) August 25, 2019
Shanahan’s view of the play was crystal clear.
“You shouldn’t throw into triple coverage in that situation,” Shanahan said, “We were fortunate enough not to get it picked. I’d like Dante to go up and make more of an attempt to catch it. But that’s a ball that should never leave [Garoppolo’s] hand.”
Below are updates on a host of 49ers players:
Kyle Juszczyk – X-rays came back negative on his hand. He’s fine.
K’Waun Williams – Shanahan said the team is planning to “up his stuff,” and get him back into practice in the coming week.
Ronald Blair III – Has had a nagging groin issue, but should be back to practice and play in the final preseason game against the Los Angeles Chargers this week.
Adrian Colbert – Colbert’s been dealing with a poorly-timed hamstring problem, but like Blair, is expected to practice and play in the final game.
Joshua Garnett – His time may be running out with the team, as he’s been consistently unhealthy in his tenure (he’s been recovering from finger surgery) and has been indirectly called out for that by Shanahan and general manager John Lynch. Like Blair and Colbert, he’ll practice and play in the final preseason game.
Dee Ford – He will be back in practice this week, but will not play, as expected, in the final preseason game.
George Kittle – His calf injury seems minor, and he’ll return to practice this week. Like Ford, he won’t play in the final preseason game.
Jalen Hurd – The 49ers are hoping he’s back in practice this week with back tightness; it’s unclear, but probably doubtful that he plays in the final preseason game.
Elijah Lee – He will be good to play this weekend and return to practice after thumb surgery.
Jerick McKinnon – The team will try and work him back into practice, but it seems like they’ll be very cautious with how they ease him back in.
Raheem Mostert – Shanahan said he had a quad issue over the weekend and is unsure what his status is.
Jullian Taylor – He’s finally back and will play in the final preseason game after dealing with back tightness
Weston Richburg – The plan is to hopefully activate Richburg and work him back into practice this week.
Nick Bosa – His status remains up in the air for Week 1, when Shanahan said “there’s a chance” that he’ll play. It’s something Shanahan said will come into clearer focus this week.
- There’s still plenty to sort out on both lines. Daniel Brunskill (who had the most snaps on the offensive in Week 3) and Damontre Moore were picked up from the American Alliance of Football this offseason, and Brunskill was likened to Jordan Matthews by Shanahan in that he’s a veteran and the team generally knows what to expect from him and has had a good camp.
- As for Moore, he’s done a solid job, which isn’t making Shanahan’s job any easier:
“He’s done a lot. He’s a candidate. He’s done a real good job. You guys have seen the plays he’s making. He’s been consistent with it, so it’s going to be tough when we get down to this final D-Line group because we definitely have a number of guys, but he’s doing all that he can to make it real hard on us. Now it’s about other guys, the people who he’s going against, who we think is going to be available for Week 1, who’s going to help us throughout the year, but it’s a tough decision.”
- All this depth is causing some stress for Shanahan, as he and Lynch look at potential trades for their wide receiver and defensive line groups (plus C.J. Beathard): “It’s stressing us out a little bit because we have a number of guys that we do like, that can play in this league and we all can see the numbers,” Shanahan said of the numbers game.