Jimmy Garoppolo ends 49ers minicamp with TD but QB's work not yet done

Jimmy Garoppolo ends 49ers minicamp with TD but QB's work not yet done

SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers coaches will disappear Wednesday afternoon, and many of the team’s veteran players will disperse, as well.

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo will spend many of the next six weeks working on his mechanics in Southern California at 3DQB, a group led by former major league pitcher Tom House.

“These next 40 days will be big, getting with him and everything,” Garoppolo said Wednesday. “He knows the offense pretty well. It’ll really help us going forward.”

Garoppolo began working with House and his team early in the offseason when 49ers coaches were not allowed to have contact with players. Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Matt Ryan, Matthew Stafford and Jared Goff are among the other NFL quarterbacks who work with the group.

“My agents knew him pretty well, that’s how the connection started,” Garoppolo said.

Adam Dedeaux, 3DQB’s CEO, along with former NFL quarterbacks John Beck and Taylor Kelly, also work with the quarterbacks. Garoppolo, who tore the ACL in his left knee in Week 3, is expected to be cleared for full practice at the start of training camp in late July.

Garoppolo was limited to 7-on-7 work during the 49ers offseason program, with one notable exception. At the beginning on a two-minute drill to end practice Wednesday, coach Kyle Shanahan decided to run a 7-on-7 type of drill with 11 players on both offense and defense. But things did not exactly go as planned.

“It wasn’t what I envisioned,” Shanahan said.

“I told the D-line to just stand there and put your hands up, no one‘s allowed to rush. The animals that they are – that’s why we love them – they couldn’t help it. I saw it, so just stopped it.”

The team’s two-day minicamp concluded without incident. The pass rush did not get to Garoppolo on that play, and the defensive line was removed from the field. The drill and practice ended with Garoppolo throwing a 10-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Dante Pettis on the final snap of the mandatory minicamp.

[RELATED: Why Pettis no longer stressed out in second NFL season]

Garoppolo said he was satisifed with what he and the 49ers' offense accomplished during the offseason program.

“As a whole, the offense kept moving in the right direction,” Garoppolo said. “I think every day we kept getting better. We had a couple of bad days here and there, but overall we were moving in the right direction.

“It’s been a good offseason, I’d say.”

George Kittle likes what he's seen from Ross Dwelley taking his spot

George Kittle likes what he's seen from Ross Dwelley taking his spot

SANTA CLARA -- Tight end Ross Dwelley cannot replace George Kittle in the 49ers’ offense, but he came up with some huge plays in the 49ers’ 36-26 victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium.

While Kittle missed his second consecutive game with knee and ankle injuries, Dwelley stepped up with four catches for 14 yards. His statistics were not prolific, but they were important contributions in San Francisco's ninth victory in 10 games this season.

The 49ers were trailing 16-0 in the first half before Dwelley caught touchdown passes of four and five yards from quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Those were the first two touchdown catches of his NFL career.

Then, he had a huge first-down pickup on a third-and-3 play late in the fourth quarter to set up the Garoppolo-to-Jeff Wilson pass that provided the winning points in the closing minute.

Kittle spoke in the locker room after the game on the condition that he only be asked questions about Dwelley, who has started six consecutive games for the 49ers due to injuries to fullback Kyle Juszczyk and, now, Kittle.

“I don’t think anyone really saw that coming when he first got here and the strides he’s taken in these last two years is incredible,” Kittle said of Dwelley, who came to the 49ers last season as an undrafted rookie from the University of San Diego.

“A lot of that is on our coaching staff and tight ends coach [Jon Embree], but a lot of that is on Ross and the time he spends in here getting his body right and mentally. He’s just doing such a great job for this team.”

Kittle compared Dwelley's ascendance to the way quarterback Nick Mullens stepped in last season when he was needed after injuries to Garoppolo and C.J. Beathard. Kittle said he has not had to spend a lot of one-on-one time with Dwelley during the time he has taken over as the starting tight end because Dwelley is on top of things.

“Fortunately, a guy like Ross doesn’t really need a lot of help,” Kittle said. “He’s been preparing to play. He prepares every game like he’s going to start, and he’s going to play every single rep, so he just hopped in, pretty similar to Nick last year.

“He just hops in, and he’s ready to go, and there’s not a lot of, ‘Hey, get your toes wet.’ He’s just out there going full speed, and that’s what you want out of the guy.”

The 49ers hope to get Kittle's services back next week for the team’s Sunday night game against the Green Bay Packers. Kittle leads the 49ers with 46 receptions for 541 yards and two touchdowns in seven games.

[RELATED: How crazy final-play TD in 49ers' victory affected bettors]

Dwelley has 14 catches on the season for 66 yards and two touchdowns. He also had a clutch third-down conversion two weeks ago that helped the 49ers clinch their Week 9 victory over the Cardinals.

Odd 49ers-Cardinals ending results in 'miracle push' of betting line

Odd 49ers-Cardinals ending results in 'miracle push' of betting line

At the conclusion of the 49ers' win over the Cardinals on Sunday, you likely were doing one of three things: running around the room in celebration, breaking everything in sight or crying with laughter.

The first description applies to those who bet on San Francisco to beat the 10-point spread.

The second description applies to those who bet on Arizona.

The third, of course, applies to everyone else who had the enjoyment of watching the Cardinals fumble multiple times on a game-ending hook-and-ladder play that resulted in a 49ers' defensive touchdown that made the scoring margin -- you guessed it -- 10 points.

Yep, when D.J. Reed returned the fumble for a touchdown to put the 49ers up 36-26, it secured what those in the betting world would refer to as a "miracle push." San Francisco spotted Arizona 16 points to begin the game, so Cardinals' bettors were looking great ... until they weren't.

[RELATED: Watch Wilson's late TD catch in 49ers' win vs. Cardinals]

They shouldn't be too upset, though. Just think, it could have been worse. After all, the 49ers never got the chance to attempt an extra point at the end of the game. Then again, the Cardinals missed one in the first quarter.

On second thought ... be upset. Be very upset.