The San Francisco 49ers closed out the weekend with another strong showing for the defense. Robert Saleh addressed the media for the first time since the team kicked off their padded sessions. Here are six player updates from the defensive coordinator through the first four days of training camp.
1. Richard Sherman
On Sunday, Sherman made his first appearance in pads since his Achilles injury last November. The team is still limiting the corner's reps, something that is likely to continue throughout most of the next month. Sherman played three consecutive snaps before taking during first-team drills. His highlight of Sunday's practice came when he broke up one of Jimmy Garoppolo's passes intended for George Kittle.
"He looks really good. Sherm will tell you. But his mindset, all of the things that make Sherman great are all there," Saleh said. "It's just a matter of him just getting his legs back underneath him and all that stuff. He's doing a good job. He looks good."
2. Jimmie Ward
With Sherman in, where does that leave Ward? Saleh suggested the 49ers could potentially deploy the versatile defensive back all over San Francisco's secondary. But as of now, the 49ers appear set on keeping Ward at cornerback.
"Jimmie is versatile. He is a special athlete. He can do anything we want him to do," Saleh said. "But right now, it's to give him the best chance possible to go compete at that corner spot just like everybody else. Compete at nickel, compete at free safety, compete at getting on the football field and being one of our best 11."
3. Jeremiah Attaochu
Attaouchu was brought in this offseason to help improve San Francisco's pass rush. The 49ers recent addition flashed in each of the team's first four practices. Saleh appears pleased with the edge rusher's early showing.
"Attaochu is relentless. He's very, very business-like. He's a lot more nimble, if that's the word, than I thought he'd be," Saleh said. "He's very athletic. Very, very athletic. He is very determined, so we're excited to have him. He comes with the right mindset so having him here and adding him to the group has been cool."
4. DJ Reed
The former college cornerback has continued to get reps at safety. Reed hauled in his first interception of camp on Sunday on a pass from CJ Beathard intended for Dante Pettis.
"(Reed is) relentless. I alluded to it last week that we've got a bunch of guys who just love ball and want to be here and want to work, and he is one of them. He's doing very well as a free safety," Saleh said. "I'm not going to crown him. None of us will. He's learning every single day he learns something new. He plays extremely hard. It's the same message we give our guys every single day that if they adhere to our style of ball, which is attack the ball, extreme violence and all gas, no brake, you can hide a lot of your mistakes. He exemplifies all of it. As he learns and he grows, those are the things that he can take with him and he'll just get better and better. But, D.J. is doing a good job. Very pleased with him at this point at free safety. Now, just continue to grow. He's got a long way."
5. Tarvarius Moore
Moore is another rookie who is getting acclimated to a new role. The 49ers drafted the free safety out of Southern Miss with the intention of transitioning him to cornerback. During the team's opening practice, Moore ripped away a 50/50 ball from Dante Pettis for the defense's first interception of camp.
"He's got the skill set. He's got ridiculous top-end speed and as soon as he understands that he's a lot faster than everybody else on the football field, and he starts to trust it and gain a little bit more patience as a corner, like we preach, he'll continue to grow," Saleh said. "It's a learning curve for him. He's got a chance and he's got the right mindset, too, so he's got to continue to work on his technique, effort and scheme. He'll come along."
6. Fred Warner
Warner is a name that has garnered plenty buzz this offseason. The 49ers third-round pick is catching on to his new role at MIKE and has stood out with the second-team defense. On Sunday, Warner jumped a pass intended for Matt Breida for an interception during 1-on-1s.
"(Warner's) doing very well. He's extremely smart. He's got full command of the huddle," Saleh said. "(He) shows great physicality, so that's very exciting. The next step for him is to show the consistency that we're looking for with regards to scheme and recognizing things before they happen. He's progressing very well. We're excited where Fred is, but just like these kids, young men I should say, they've got a long way to go."