San Francisco 49ers training camp capsule
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (2-14)
OPEN CAMP: July 28, SAP Performance Facility, Santa Clara, California
LAST YEAR: Matched franchise record for losses and fired coach Chip Kelly and GM Trent Baalke. Marked second straight year Niners fired coach after one season following Jim Tomsula’s 5-11 tenure. Lost 13 straight games at one point in 2016 season and only wins came against Rams. Set franchise worsts for points, total yards and yards rushing allowed in season and blew four double-digit leads in eight home games. Biggest story around team was QB Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for national anthem in protest of police brutality and mistreatment of minorities.
IMPORTANT ADDITIONS: Coach Kyle Shanahan, QB Brian Hoyer, WR Pierre Garcon, DE Elvis Dumervil, DT Earl Mitchell, LB Malcolm Smith, RB Kyle Juszczyk, DC Robert Saleh, rookies DL Solomon Thomas, LB Reuben Foster.
IMPORTANT LOSSES: Kaepernick, QB Blaine Gabbert, WR Torrey Smith, WR Quinton Patton, S Antoine Bethea, CB Tramaine Brock, LB Gerald Hodges.
CAMP NEEDS: Shanahan’s main goal is implementing system and culture to team with overhauled roster. Hoyer gets shot to be starting QB but has little to work with outside of Garcon. Figuring out starters on offensive line, finding receiver to complement Garcon and determining if Carlos Hyde is suited to outside zone running scheme are major tasks on offense. Defense gets first look at first-round picks Thomas and Foster. Thomas missed offseason program because Stanford was still in session. Foster sat out recovering from shoulder surgery.
EXPECTATIONS: Team that made three straight trips to NFC title games from 2011-13 under coach Jim Harbaugh enters season with few expectations. Keeping coach for more than one season and improving on last year’s meager win total would be start in first season under Shanahan and GM John Lynch. Defensive front seven should be upgraded with Thomas and Foster joining previous two first-round picks DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead, and healthy LB NaVorro Bowman. Niners are counting on Shanahan to boost offense behind journeyman Hoyer.
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