14 Observations from 49ers Training Camp: July 28

The San Francisco 49ers opened training camp on Friday with their first practice, a non-padded session from the SAP Performance Facility. Reuben Foster, Marquise Goodwin and others provided the initial highlights of what will be an entertaining month in Santa Clara.

Here are the top observations from Friday.

1. During the first 20 minutes of practice, breaking news came through that Solomon Thomas had signed his contract. The third-overall pick went straight to the locker room to get dressed before heading out to the practice field. He did a light warmup with strength and conditioning coach Ray Wright but did not do any work with the full team. Kyle Shanahan told reporters on Friday that Thomas is expected to be a full participant on Saturday.

2. Speaking of rookies, Foster provided the first turnover of camp when he intercepted C.J. Beathard on a tipped pass over the middle during a 7-on-7 period. Foster returned it for what could have been a pick-six. The linebacker spent most of practice running with the threes.

"It was good to get him out there," Shanahan said after practice.

Friday was Foster's first full-team work since San Francisco drafted the linebacker.

3. Some lineup notes:

  • Dontae Johnson and Rashard Robinson got first-team reps at corner. Ahkello Witherspoon and Keith Reaser were up next.
  • Jaquiski Tartt started at free safety in place of the injured Jimmie Ward, who was out with a minor hamstring injury.
  • The starting offensive line went as follows: Joe Staley at left tackle, Joshua Garnett at left guard, Daniel Kilgore at center, Brandon Fusco at right guard and Trent Brown at right tackle.
  • The starting defensive line went as follows from left to right: Garrett Celek, Earl Mitchell, DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead. Eli Harold and Elvis Dumervil were quick to sub in for Carradine and Armstead.

4. Pierre Garçon started practice with a few sizeable runs. The offensive line created a hole, and Hyde showed good burst.

5. Aaron Lynch, Armstead and Buckner all made plays in the backfied on Friday.

6. Pierre Garçon to Pierre Garçon for a 15-yard gain was the first notable offensive highlight. Hoyer threaded a pass to Garçon's back shoulder through tight coverage for the completion.

7. It was the same names getting punt return reps as the offseason program: Jeremy Kerley, Bruce Ellington, Trent Taylor, DeAndre Carter and Victor Bolden Jr.

8. Hoyer lofted a pass over the coverage to Aldrick Robinson for a medium gain down the right sideline during full-team work.

9. Hoyer also had two nice completions to Goodwin. One came on a crossing route from left to right and the next on a 10-yard stopping route.

10. Ray-Ray Armstrong nearly had the play of the day. He kept up with Joe Williams stride-for-stride down the right sideline and nearly came down with an over-the-shoulder interception.

11. DeAndre Smelter came down with a contested 25-yard reception down the right sideline on a throw from Nick Mullens. Smelter fought through contact and made an adjustment on the ball before going up and making the grab.

12. Eric Reid made a diving interception on a pass towards the left sideline. Chanceller James nearly did the same but settled for the impressive PBU.

13. Williams found a nice hole up the middle towards the end of practice and showed off his wheels for what may have been a long touchdown run.

14. One more defensive highlight came from Harold and Ronald Blair III. Harold tipped the ball at the line of scrimmage, Blair came down with the ball and took off for a would-be pick-six.

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