After two more days of practices in Santa Clara, the 49ers will travel to Denver to go up against the Broncos for two days of work before the clubs meet Monday night in a nationally televised preseason game.
The 49ers’ offense figures to benefit greatly from the work against the defense of first-year coach Vic Fangio, who served as 49ers defensive coordinator during the successful four-year run of former coach Jim Harbaugh.
Nick Mullens, who is locked in a competition with C.J. Beathard for the No. 2 job behind Jimmy Garoppolo, said he is looking forward to working against a defense different than the one he has seen every day in practice up to this point.
“You just get more competition,” Mullens said on The 49ers Insider Podcast. “We’ve practiced 11 times during camp and it doesn’t get monotonous, but at the same time you’d rather be going against somebody else.”
Teams in the preseason might be reluctant to show a lot in the games because of a possible competitive advantage gained from not showing plays or variations that can be unveiled in the regular season. But in a joint practice, where the film is not distributed to the other 30 teams, schemes can get more elaborate and challenging for the opponent.
[RELATED: Mullens, Beathard neck and neck for 49ers' backup QB job]
“Coach Fangio is obviously a well-respected coach, and a great defensive mind, so it’s always cool to practice against a great defensive scheme like they have over there,” Mullens said. “The more looks that you can get in practice, the more coverages, everything you’re seeing, the more you can see, the more you’ll gain experience from.”
Mullens completed 11 of 17 pass attempts for 105 yard with one touchdown and one interception on Saturday night in the 49ers’ preseason opener against the Dallas Cowboys. Beathard was 13 of 17 for 141 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
SANTA CLARA – Wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders envisioned having a big game on Monday night before leaving the game after just 24 snaps due to a rib injury.
“It sucked,” Sanders said on Wednesday. “I wanted to be out there with the guys, especially because I felt like I was going to have a good game. Then, when I got hurt, it sucked.”
Sanders appeared to sustain the injury in the first quarter while making a 12-yard reception. He bent awkwardly and his helmet came off when he was hit by Seahawks safety Bradley McDougald at the end of the play.
The next time Jimmy Garoppolo a pass Sanders’ way, it was low and Sanders immediately grabbed the right side of his chest and ran off the field. He did not come back into the game. Sanders had two catches for 24 yards in his limited action.
[RELATED: 49ers sign DE Moore after placing Blair on season-ending IR]
Sanders declined to reveal the specifics of his injury, but coach Kyle Shanahan said the injury is to Sanders’ rib cartilage. Sanders said he is still sore and described himself as “day to day.”
Sanders was one of several 49ers who were not on the field at the start of Wednesday’s practice and may not be available for Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi's Stadium. The list also includes:
TE George Kittle (knee/ankle)
LT Joe Staley (finger dislocation/fracture)
RB Matt Breida (ankle)
K Robbie Gould (quadriceps)
NT D.J. Jones (groin)
LB Azeez Al-Shaair (concussion)
SANTA CLARA -- Defensive end Damontre Moore made a strong bid for a roster spot with the 49ers with an impressive training camp and exhibition season.
Moore finally made it to the team’s 53-man roster on Wednesday, filling the roster spot that was vacated when the 49ers placed defensive end Ronald Blair on injured reserve. Blair is scheduled for season-ending surgery to repair a torn ACL in his right knee.
Moore, 27, has appeared in 54 games over the past seven seasons with the New York Giants, Miami, Seattle, Dallas and the Raiders. He has 10 sacks in his NFL career.
Moore signed a one-year contract with the 49ers on Wednesday after originally coming to the organization in the spring.
[RELATED: Shanahan confirms Witherspoon will resume starting role]
He played with the San Diego Fleet of the Alliance of American Football in the spring, and signed with the 49ers. He registered two sacks during the preseason but was among the team’s final cuts when the 49ers were required to trim their roster from 90 players to the regular-season limit of 53.
Blair served as the 49ers’ No. 3 edge rusher behind Nick Bosa and Dee Ford. Moore is likely to see action in a backup role, beginning Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi’s Stadium.