49ers notes: Harbaugh likes QBs' progress


49ers notes: Harbaugh likes QBs' progress

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Matt MaioccoCSNBayArea.com
SANTA CLARA -- Some of the early rounds have gone to the defense on the 49ers' practice field this summer. But the offense got in a few licks Monday when the team returned to work after a day off.Coach Jim Harbaugh said he was satisfied with the way quarterbacks Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick performed after both had their best days of training-camp practice."I'm pleased with the way they're picking things up," Harbaugh said. "They've mastered the overall game plan and a lot of the parts of it and a lot of the finer details of it. They just keep getting better at it. They're both really bright guys and talented guys. So I'm very pleased how they're progressing."Smith and newly added receiver Braylon Edwards hooked up on several passes, including a 4-yard fade over cornerback Tramaine Brock for a touchdown. Smith also unveiled some "back shoulder" throws against man coverage, where he intentionally throws the ball behind the receiver while the corner had his back turned.RELATED: Camp report (88): 49ers depth chart unveiled
"Those are the things that you get taught and coached and they're part of the playbook," Smith said. "He made a great catch on a couple of them."With the 49ers' exhibition opener set for Friday at New Orleans, Smith and the offense appear to be latching onto Harbaugh's new offense and his style of coaching."There are a lot of new things," Smith said. "It's great. I think we're embracing them as a team. I think the entire team is getting on board. That's what we need."Obviously, what we were doing wasn't working -- all of us, me included. That's the definition of insanity, right? Doing the same thing and expecting a different result." The 49ers have nine safeties listed on their depth chart, and another is coming back to town. The 49ers agreed to terms with safety Dashon Goldson on Monday. He is expected to officially sign his one-year contract with the 49ers on Tuesday."With the talent in the secondary, I think that makes the competition all the better," Harbaugh said. "Dashon is a 49er, and I'm pleased he's coming back. We've had a couple conversations. He's ready to get to work. Iron sharpens iron, so I'm looking forward to that."Reggie Smith, who has been listed as a starter from the first day of training camp, was injured Saturday and did not practice Monday. A source told CSN Bay Area that Smith might require surgery. The Sacramento Bee reported Smith is expected to miss a couple weeks with a torn meniscus in his knee.Harbaugh said the contract agreement with Goldson would've occurred even if Smith had not been injured. Goldson visited the New England Patriots on Sunday. Smith did less checking down to his running backs in Monday's practice, but he said there was no emphasis on pushing the ball down the field in practice. The 49ers worked on a lot of situations to prepare for Friday's exhibition opener.Smith said he views dumping the ball off to running backs and letting them run as an integral part of the offense."Checking the ball down in the West Coast offense, if you're making good decisions, is a good thing," Smith said. "I don't think there's an emphasis either way. We're going through our reads and trying to make good decisions and throw the ball where it's supposed to go."

What they're saying: Happy Thanksgiving 2017


What they're saying: Happy Thanksgiving 2017

Bay Area sports teams and your favorite players have plenty to be thankful for this year. 

Check out how the teams and players are celebrating Thanksgiving in 2017.

Shanahan: Garoppolo's best football will come next season


Shanahan: Garoppolo's best football will come next season

SANTA CLARA – The two quarterbacks who finish this season with the 49ers are probably going to be the same two quarterbacks the organization carry on their 2018 roster.

So every decision coach Kyle Shanahan makes with C.J. Beathard and Jimmy Garoppolo is being made to consider what is best for those two players.

Shanahan made the expected announcement this week that Beathard will make his fifth consecutive start on Sunday when the 49ers face the Seattle Seahawks at Levi’s Stadium.

Beathard is coming off his best game as a pro. He was a major contributor to the 49ers’ first victory of the season, throwing for 288 yards, throwing two touchdowns and rushing for a score in a 31-21 victory over the New York Giants. His performance seemingly did enough to earn him another start.

Meanwhile, Garoppolo pulled up to 49ers headquarters on Oct. 31 with no prior knowledge of Shanahan’s offensive system. Even as a rookie, Beathard has five more months of experience in the 49ers’ offense than Garoppolo, a four-year professional who made just two starts during his time with the New England Patriots.

“We’ve had C.J. in there for some time,” Shanahan said. “He’s getting more used to it, and I’m getting more used to him. The players are getting more used to him around him. It’s been nice to add a few things each week for him.”

General manager John Lynch reiterated this week he considers Garoppolo the 49ers’ quarterback of the future. Garoppolo is not under contract for next season. If the 49ers are unable to work out a multi-year extension, the club would be expected to designate him as their franchise player to retain him for the 2018 season.

Garoppolo is likely to get some playing time in the final six games of the season, but the 49ers have every reason to take their time in order to give him the best chance at success. On the first three days of the bye week, Garoppolo had a chance to go back to the beginning and learn the basics of the scheme in meetings with quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello and Shanahan.

Shanahan’s scheme is complex with unique verbiage and an abundance of adjustments that are required on any given play. Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan took a step backward in his first season in Shanahan's scheme. The next year, Ryan was a runaway MVP winner with a career-high 38 touchdowns and a career-low seven interceptions.

It took Ryan a full season of experience with Shanahan to fully grasp his responsibilities, so it is unreasonable to believe Garoppolo would be able to do much more than just function if he gets onto the field for extended action.

“Jimmy gets more and more ready each week,” Shanahan said. “Is Jimmy going to be the best he can? To me, that’s impossible. He just hasn’t been here long enough, and I think he’ll get an opportunity to be better each week.

“I don’t think we’re going to see Jimmy’s best football, to be fair to him, until next year because that’s what guys need. But C.J. did play his best football last week, which definitely, to me, made the decision easier.”