49ers notes: Harbaugh likes QBs' progress

August 9, 2011, 2:13 am
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Matt MaioccoCSNBayArea.com
SANTA CLARA -- Some of the early rounds have gone to the defense on the 49ers' practice field this summer. But the offense got in a few licks Monday when the team returned to work after a day off.Coach Jim Harbaugh said he was satisfied with the way quarterbacks Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick performed after both had their best days of training-camp practice."I'm pleased with the way they're picking things up," Harbaugh said. "They've mastered the overall game plan and a lot of the parts of it and a lot of the finer details of it. They just keep getting better at it. They're both really bright guys and talented guys. So I'm very pleased how they're progressing."Smith and newly added receiver Braylon Edwards hooked up on several passes, including a 4-yard fade over cornerback Tramaine Brock for a touchdown. Smith also unveiled some "back shoulder" throws against man coverage, where he intentionally throws the ball behind the receiver while the corner had his back turned.RELATED: Camp report (88): 49ers depth chart unveiled
"Those are the things that you get taught and coached and they're part of the playbook," Smith said. "He made a great catch on a couple of them."With the 49ers' exhibition opener set for Friday at New Orleans, Smith and the offense appear to be latching onto Harbaugh's new offense and his style of coaching."There are a lot of new things," Smith said. "It's great. I think we're embracing them as a team. I think the entire team is getting on board. That's what we need."Obviously, what we were doing wasn't working -- all of us, me included. That's the definition of insanity, right? Doing the same thing and expecting a different result." The 49ers have nine safeties listed on their depth chart, and another is coming back to town. The 49ers agreed to terms with safety Dashon Goldson on Monday. He is expected to officially sign his one-year contract with the 49ers on Tuesday."With the talent in the secondary, I think that makes the competition all the better," Harbaugh said. "Dashon is a 49er, and I'm pleased he's coming back. We've had a couple conversations. He's ready to get to work. Iron sharpens iron, so I'm looking forward to that."Reggie Smith, who has been listed as a starter from the first day of training camp, was injured Saturday and did not practice Monday. A source told CSN Bay Area that Smith might require surgery. The Sacramento Bee reported Smith is expected to miss a couple weeks with a torn meniscus in his knee.Harbaugh said the contract agreement with Goldson would've occurred even if Smith had not been injured. Goldson visited the New England Patriots on Sunday. Smith did less checking down to his running backs in Monday's practice, but he said there was no emphasis on pushing the ball down the field in practice. The 49ers worked on a lot of situations to prepare for Friday's exhibition opener.Smith said he views dumping the ball off to running backs and letting them run as an integral part of the offense."Checking the ball down in the West Coast offense, if you're making good decisions, is a good thing," Smith said. "I don't think there's an emphasis either way. We're going through our reads and trying to make good decisions and throw the ball where it's supposed to go."

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