Summary: In the final full practice before their exhibition opener, the 49ers did some game-planning work to face the Minnesota Vikings. The team practiced for 2 hours, 15 minutes wearing helmets, shoulder pads and shorts.
Running back LaMichael James returned after missing Tuesday's practice due to an illness. He and Kendall Hunter got a lot of work, as the 49ers spent a good portion of the day working on the run game.Cornerback Curtis Holcomb and offensive lineman Jason Slowey returned to practice. Holcomb missed seven practices with an undisclosed injury. He made a nice play in a red-zone drill inside the 5-yard line when he saved a touchdown by pushing Delanie Walker out of bounds before the pylon. Slowey sat out three practices.VIDEO: Matt and Mindi -- 49ers prepare for first preseason game
Penalty box: Receiver Kyle Williams was pulled from practice late after he scuffled with undrafted rookie cornerback Deante' Purvis following Williams' reception. The entire episode, including an apparent Williams headbutt, lasted about three seconds.Coach Jim Harbaugh deemed Williams as the instigator, and appeared to angrily order Williams off the field. But Williams and Harbaugh spoke, and Williams ended up taking a knee next to Dashon Goldson on the sideline for several minutes.After practice, Harbaugh and Williams had a brief talk. It's the second time in training camp that Harbaugh has rebuked a player for his on-field actions. Early in camp, he ordered receiver Brian Tyms off the field. It was a rough day for Williams, who earlier in the practice dropped two passes.Offensive play of the day: Since the beginning of training camp, Randy Moss has not seen a lot of action come his way during practices. During an 11-on-11 red-zone session, he made a leaping catch of a Colin Kaepernick fade route for a 7-yard touchdown against the coverage of undrafted rookie Anthony Mosley.Defensive play of the day: Linebackers coach Jim Leavitt paces the linebackers through catching drills before every practice. Patrick Willis got in a little extra work with a diving interception in the end zone in an 11-on-11 drill. Josh Johnson rolled right and tried to LaMichael James on a pass at the goal line. The ball deflected off James and fluttered into the air, giving Willis the chance to make the sprawling grab.Notable: Defensive lineman Demarcus Dobbs was issued No. 96 last season, when he made the team as an undrafted free agent. But Dobbs is now wearing No. 40, so he does not have to report every play when he's on the field as a tight end. Dobbs is turning into a legitimate two-way player. On Wednesday, Dobbs caught a 3-yard touchdown pass from Alex Smith.Touchdownsinterceptions: Receiver Ben Hannula had a good day that included a 17-yard TD catch from Kaepernick. . . . Reserve tight end Kyle Nelson hauled in a leaping scoring grab from Scott Tolzien. . . In a game-plan portion, Goldson intercepted a Tolzien pass intended for rookie Nathan Palmer.Injury report: Receiver Joe Hastings (right leg) missed his eighth practice in a row. Running back Jewel Hampton (foot) is on the non-football injury list, while outside linebacker Darius Fleming (knee) is on the physically-unable-to-perform list.Next practice: The 49ers have a 90-minute "mock game" scheduled for Thursday. The 49ers open the exhibition season Friday against the Minnesota Vikings at Candlestick Park. None of the 49ers' practices in Santa Clara this summer are open to the general public due to the ongoing stadium construction.
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