The San Francisco 49ers squad reunited for the first time for mandatory minicamp practices that took place June 7-8. As the team hit the field at the SAP Performance Facility, many coaches and veteran players noticed a great amount of growth and confidence in young players and rookies while they prepared for training camp.
Here's what they had to say about the young 49ers growth so far:
- "Trey has done an outstanding job," defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans said. "Trey has gotten better and better and better each day… Trey has done an exceptional job and I know we're proud of where he is right now. Defensively, defending him has been tough. He's putting the ball on the money every time he throws it, the accuracy is there, the deep ball is there to show whatever he wants. He can zip in there and make a lot of plays, so I'm excited for Trey and what he can do."
- "I can only say positive things," fullback Kyle Juszczyk said. "Trey has done a really good job in really taking on all the different parts of being QB1. I've seen improvement on the field. As far as his performance, you see a lot of big plays out there. And as a leader, I feel like he's stepped up. He's just a very natural leader, a guy that people gravitate towards."
- "Trey's been deliberate in everything he's done," head coach Kyle Shanahan said. "Especially last week, heading into today, you can really see him stacking days and getting better each practice."
- "He's QB1," cornerback Charvarius Ward said. "He's the face of the franchise. He's gonna show the world this season."
- "He carries himself extremely well, which is why he's here, why everybody's so high on him," left tackle Trent Williams said. "We all know his attributes as a quarterback but I think his mentality, the way he carries himself, the way he holds his head, the way nothing ever rattles him. I think that's his key feature and that'll take him a long way… He's a lot more comfortable. You can tell he's worked on his mechanics with his release. He's taking huge steps in the offseason and I can't wait to see how he looks when a lot of bullets get flying."
Tariq Castro-Fields and Samuel Womack III
- "The young guys we brought in with Tariq and Samuel, those guys have done a great job of coming in and doing what they're supposed to do and I'm really pushing those guys," Ryans said. "It's going to be great to see those guys coming back and coming to camp when it's real football and time to take off. I'm excited for where they are now and they can still improve and get even better, so it's going to be exciting for me to watch that."
- "He's super talented," defensive lineman Nick Bosa said. "He does things out there that I definitely couldn't do as a rookie. Just the way he moves, he's definitely got some impressive stuff about him… Just his bend and his mobility. I think it's from his gymnastics background, he can bend really well. That's something I have had to improve on as my career has gone on, as I've trained with my brother and our trainer. He's just got it naturally, so he could keep building and keep getting better and be pretty scary."
- "Dang," defensive lineman Samson Ebukam said. "He's good. He's gonna be a key factor in this defense. I've been seeing him run all of the drills and I'm just like, 'man, he's athletic.' He's big. He's got young legs so he's able to just keep going all day. Seeing him do that, I've got somebody that could push me and he's gonna push others as well. That room in general is so close knit, and we're able to push each other every day just to get better… He's a sponge. He's able to just click in and listen to what others are saying… Whatever people say, he's applying it to the field. And he's getting better and better every day."
- "He has really great ability and he just has to keep working," Ryans said. "He has the ability to get to the quarterback. And if he keeps working, keeps getting in there with (defensive line coach Kris) Kocurek, and learning from Bosa, learning from Arik Armstead, learning from Samson, just diving in and really detailing out his job, Drake has a chance to be a really good player for us. The sky is the limit for him, he just has to keep working, keep improving daily."
- "I'm extremely confident in Jauan," Shanahan said. "If anyone watched our games at the end of last year, not many people covered him. He got open, he had aggressive hands, he got up the field, he blocked well… What's cool about Jauan, he's got some unique running styles, but just watch him, he separates more than probably all the other guys."
- "Jauan kind of surprised me a little bit," Ward said. "He has a lot more talent than I thought he had. He's a great runner… He knows how to work his leverage and he's just a gamer."
- "This offseason, (Jauan) and B.A., the first day they got here they've had as good of an offseason as they've had since they got in the league," Shanahan said. "They're as good as they've been right now, both of them… For those guys to come in this year, to come in at the beginning, this is by far the best I've seen them at this time. That's allowed them to be leaders. They knew what they were doing. They were in shape. They're able to talk to other guys. I know how much they went into training camp or the season a little unprepared just from lacking experience. You can see that experience that's led them to prepare this offseason so much better. That's why their game's a lot better, and it's cool for other guys to see that."
- "We all know Aiyuk can be receiver No. 1 once he puts his mind and everything together," Ward said. "He's gonna be a great receiver in this league."
- "They are great players," Ward said. "They were drafted for a reason. They have potential to be great players in the league. They just need to continue to work on that game, learn and take coaching real well."
- "The first time he came off the ball I was like, 'Damn, who was that?," Williams said. "First step off the ball I thought, 'Wow, that's extremely quick.' He has really good footwork and that athleticism from playing football is going to take him a long way, especially in this offense."
- "He's transformed himself in a few months," Williams said. "To me, that's indicative of a lot – not just a good diet and a good workout regimen – but it's mental toughness for a guy to be able to go in and change his whole body composition in 90 days so to speak. Banks, his athleticism has always jumped off the board to be the size of a man that he is. Shedding 20 pounds, he definitely looks light on his feet, his footwork looks 10 times better, his balance, his upper body lean, everything is in place now and I think he's ready to take that big jump from Year 1 to Year 2 and I'm here to help him."