Training Camp 2023

Maiocco's 49ers camp observations: Purdy airs it out

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SANTA CLARA — Quarterback Brock Purdy did not hold back on his first day on the practice field.

Purdy, the 49ers’ presumptive starter, saw opportunities for a couple of deep shots on Thursday, so he demonstrated convincingly that he has no limitations in his right arm.

In 7-on-7 work, Purdy aired out a spiral down the right sideline that overshot Jauan Jennings by several yards. The ball sailed approximately 50 yards down the field.

A short time later in an 11-on-11 drill, Purdy again overthrew his intended target on similar play. This time, he overshot Deebo Samuel.

Although both passes were incomplete, Purdy showed he can air it out. And that might have been in question before he was cleared this week to take part in practices without any restrictions.

“Those two go balls -- one to Jauan and the other to Deebo -- I just haven’t thrown a ‘go’ ball to them all offseason,” Purdy said. “I just got to get on the same page with them.

“Obviously, being out there for my first day, I wanted to let it rip. They felt good coming out of my hand. I just got to get on the same page with them and get more reps.”

Purdy sustained a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing elbow in the NFC Championship Game. He underwent surgery on March 10, and began throwing a regulation NFL football on May 29.

Purdy’s first pass attempt after taking part in warmups and individual sessions came when he changed his arm slot to throw a three-quarters sidearm toss to tight end Ross Dwelley along the right sideline. Dwelley could not hold onto the pass.

His second pass attempt ended up in the hands of 49ers veteran safety Tashaun Gipson for an interception. Purdy attributed the failed play to a miscommunication with receiver Brandon Aiyuk on the route adjustment.

Purdy squeezed in a perfect throw to Aiyuk on an intermediate crossing route. He made a nice touch pass over linebacker Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles on a crossing route, but Aiyuk could not hold on.

On another play, Purdy was forced out of the pocket to his left and threw the ball on the move, across his body, out of bounds to avoid a sack.

In all, Purdy completed 3 of 10 pass attempts with an interception. Two of his passes were dropped.

Clearly, the practice session was a major hurdle cleared on a path that is expected to lead toward a starting assignment on Sunday, Sept. 10, when the 49ers open the regular season against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Quarterback watch

As promised, coach Kyle Shanahan divided the practice snaps equally among the quarterbacks battling for spots on the depth chart behind Purdy.

Trey Lance and Sam Darnold both completed two of five pass attempts, while Brandon Allen completed four of his five passes in 11-on-11 work.

Darnold and Aiyuk hooked up on the deepest completion when the quarterback delivered a deep ball under pressure. The ball was underthrown, but Aiyuk made the adjustment to catch the ball before going to the ground.

Quick slants

— Defensive end Nick Bosa’s holdout reached a third day. Bosa is under contract because the 49ers picked up his fifth-year option. He is subject to fines, but the 49ers are expected to waive those penalties once the sides agree on his new contract.

— Defensive ends Drake Jackson and Clelin Ferrell are lining up with the first team defense in Bosa’s absence. Jackson showed his strength on one play in which he set the edge on the right side, forcing running back Christian McCaffrey to cut a run back inside.

— Rookie kicker Jake Moody made all four of his field-goal attempts, connecting on tries from 33, 38, 38 and 51 yards. Veteran Zane Gonzalez connected on his attempts from 41 and 43 yards.

— Punter Mitch Wishnowsky passed his physical and was activated off the active/non-football injury list.

— The 49ers signed linebacker Kyahva Tezino of San Diego State. He last played for the Pittsburgh Maulers of the USFL. Tezino was issued No. 51.

— Defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw appears to be moving much better than in the past after battling knee issues during his first three NFL seasons. On one play, Kinlaw flowed with traffic toward the right sideline and was in position to clog up play on which second-year running back Ty Davis-Price was the ball carrier.

— Cornerback Sam Womack, sporting his new No. 0 jersey, had an active day with two passes broken up. 

— Defensive end Austin Bryant, linebacker Dre Greenlaw and safety George Odum got into the backfield for what would have been tackles behind the line of scrimmage on run plays.

— Defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw had a would-be sack.

— Linebacker Marcelino McCrary-Ball broke up a Lance pass intended for Davis-Price.

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