For the second spring in a row, the 49ers will have a first-round draft pick from Stanford absent from most of the team’s offseason program and playing catch up with nearly everyone else on the 90-man roster.
Former Stanford defensive lineman Solomon Thomas, the No. 3 overall pick in the draft, wide receiver Trent Taylor, a fifth-round draft pick from Louisiana Tech, and undrafted wide receiver Kendrick Bourne of Eastern Washington are the only 49ers players who are currently ineligible to take part in the team's offseason program.
NFL rules stipulate that rookies who have not completed their undergraduate degrees are ineligible to join a team’s offseason program on a full-time basis until after their schools' final classes of the spring semester.
Thomas will not be eligible to join his 49ers teammates until June 14 – the second day of the team’s mandatory three-day minicamp. Taylor will be allowed to join the 49ers on Friday. The final day of classes at Eastern Washington is listed as June 16 for Bourne.
It is the second year in a row that Stanford’s late class schedule will have an impact on the 49ers. Guard Joshua Garnett worked out on his own last year and tried to replicate the 49ers’ workouts from video that was downloaded to his team-issued iPad. He arrived on the practice field for the team’s mandatory minicamp.
Thomas said he will try to follow a similar routine this spring until he is allowed to join his new teammates.
“We have our iPads, so I’ll be able to watch film from that,” he said. “I talk to Josh quite a bit, and he’ll give me advice on how to go through this process – how to stay in touch, just keep learning along the way and keep progressing along the way.”
All rookies were eligible to attend the rookie minicamp the weekend following the draft.
The 49ers are currently wrapping up the final week of the team’s three-week period of Phase II of the offseason program. On-field workouts are permitted, but there can be no offense vs. defense drills.
Organized team activities begin next week with offense vs. defense allowed. No live contact is permitted. The 49ers’ official offseason program concludes with the team’s minicamp in mid-June.