Eric Reid

49ers Mailbag: Brown gets off to rocky start

49ers Mailbag: Brown gets off to rocky start

After four practices, including two days of padded, contact work, the 49ers have their first day off of training camp on Tuesday.

Coach Kyle Shanahan will begin working on more situations when the team returns to the practice field on Wednesday, he said.

“We wanted to go two days of our base offense without pads, two days of our base offense and defense with pads, not really doing specific situations,” Shanahan said. “We’ve been walking through two-minute stuff in our walk-throughs in the afternoon. We’ll get in a lot more situational stuff in our fifth practice when we come back.”

The break in the action allows us a chance to take a step back. Here is the latest edition of the 49ers Mailbag with questions submitted through our Facebook page:

Which player is not looking so good out there on the field? (Frank Sanborn)
The starting-caliber player who has struggled the most in the two padded practices was right tackle Trent Brown. On Sunday, he surrendered upward of five sacks during 11-on-11 periods.

Brown gave credit to the 49ers’ defensive linemen and the variety of different styles he has gone up against – Arik Armstead, Elvis Dumervil and Aaron Lynch, among them.

“It’s only going to make me better,” Brown said.

Shanahan said he was not concerned with Brown’s performance because he wants his players to use camp to experiment and refine their skills in order to peak at the start of the regular season.

“I like guys to come out, try techniques, try to improve and not really worry about perception, judging them day to day,” Shanahan said. “It’s a long process. You’re right, he didn’t have a great day (Sunday), but I think he did a lot better (Monday).

“It’s a long camp. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. I hope he’s at his best Week 1.”

The 49ers instructed Brown to report to camp at no more than 358 pounds. He said he lost some additional weight to give himself a better chance to succeed this season.

“I took the first step of coming in at a good weight,” said Brown, who stands 6 foot 8. “I’m healthy. I’m light. I definitely feel better out there with the movements that are required of me at the position and doing things in this scheme.”

If Jimmie Ward misses time, do you see Eric Reid sliding back into the free safety role and Tartt sliding into the box as strong safety? (Max Carlson )
Jaquiski Tartt joined Ward and Reid on the injured list on Monday. Injuries to the 49ers’ top three safeties meant that Vinnie Sunseri and Lorenzo Jerome lined up with the first team.

Ward (hamstring) is expected to be activated off the physically-unable-to-perform list in mid-August. Reid (ankle) is day to day. It is unclear how long Tartt could be out with an injury to his ribs area. He sustained the injury to his left side while breaking up a Brian Hoyer pass for tight end Cole Hikutini.

The 49ers fully expect Ward and Reid to be back long before the opening of the regular season. Ward is the free safety. Reid is the strong safety. Both players seem entrenched at those spots.

When Tartt returns, he will remain as the No. 3 safety – capable of playing the position at which he is needed. With Ward is out, Tartt is the free safety. If a replacement for Reid is required, Tartt will play strong safety.

Is Carlos Hyde being challenged or does he look like the clear starter? (Josh Gale)
It was a good first week of practices for Hyde. He looks – right now – to be in good position as the team’s starting running back. Veteran Tim Hightower is also looking very good. He appears to be the team’s second-best running back.

Hyde looks to be adapting better and better to the 49ers’ run scheme. And he has also placed a lot of emphasis on catching the ball out of the backfield.

Rookie Joe Williams, a fourth-round draft pick who was seen as a serious challenger to Hyde, has gotten off to a slow start and he is still gaining familarity with the system. He also must do a better job of securing the football.

Eric Reid embracing new role with 49ers: 'I was made for this position'

Eric Reid embracing new role with 49ers: 'I was made for this position'

SANTA CLARA – Despite recording seven interceptions in his first two seasons and being named to the Pro Bowl as a rookie, Eric Reid said he believes he is now in a role that best fits his skillset.

Whereas in the past, the 49ers’ safety positions were considered interchangeable, there is a clear delineation this season under first-year defensive coordinator Robert Saleh.

“Even dating back to college, this is the first time there’s a distinct strong (safety) and a distinct free (safety),” Reid said. “I’ve been used to the interchangeability type of role.

“(In) some situations, certain calls where there’s a motion, we might flip. There are a couple situations where I might be in the post in the free-safety role, but it’s not nearly as much as it has been in the past.”

Reid, who is listed at 6 foot 1, 213 pounds, said he is excited to be stationed closer to the line of scrimmage for run support while free safety Jimmie Ward patrols the deep middle of the field.

The 49ers offseason program concluded Wednesday, and Reid found himself in the middle of the action with an interception on a short Brian Hoyer pass over the middle. While he will still be counted upon for coverage, his biggest impact could come to assist a run defense that last season ranked among the worst in NFL history.

“I love it, being around the ball more,” Reid said. “I anticipate making more tackles, hopefully making more plays. I feel like I was made for this position with my body type, being a bigger safety. I’m excited about this year.

“I feel like I’m using what God has blessed me with, more, which is my size and being in the box in the run game. In the past, I felt like I could do more. And being in the post, I can’t use my size as much when it comes to the run game.”

After producing seven interceptions in his first two seasons, Reid recorded just one interception in 26 games over the past two seasons.

As a first-round pick in 2013, the 49ers picked up the fifth-year option this season for $5.676 million. He is scheduled for unrestricted free agency at the conclusion of the season. Reid said the 49ers have not spoken to his representation about a long-term extension. That will come, he believes, if he lives up to his end of the bargain in his new, streamlined role.

“I look at it from a business standpoint,” Reid said. “I majored in business. They have me under contract. They don’t have any reason to talk to right now. I imagine if I play well in the first half of the season, they’ll reach out to me. Maybe they’ll reach out to me before training camp, I don’t know. It’s whatever route they decide to take. It’s a business. I’ll treat it as a business. I have a job to do, so I’ll do it.”

 

49ers safety Reid endorses LSU safety Adams: 'We'd have to battle it out'

49ers safety Reid endorses LSU safety Adams: 'We'd have to battle it out'

SANTA CLARA – The 49ers already have three safeties selected within the top two rounds of the draft.

But as the organization has considered its options with the No. 2 overall pick, LSU safety Jamal Adams had been in the discussion. Adams recently visited the 49ers, where he and Eric Reid had a chance to catch up with each other.

Reid’s final season at LSU was 2013. The 49ers traded up to select him with the No. 18 overall pick. The 49ers drafted Jimmie Ward at the end of the first round in 2014, and Jaquiski Tartt was a second-round pick in 2015.

In the past 25 years, only two safeties -- Eric Berry (2010) and Sean Taylor (2004) – have been selected in the top five. Both were chosen with the No. 5 overall selection. Adams has a chance to go as early as No. 2 overall.

“I’m excited to see where he ends up. He could end up here. You know what I’m saying?” Reid said on Wednesday at the 49ers’ voluntary minicamp.

“He’s the best one in the draft. Someone will be very happy to have him, I’m sure.”

Adams (5 foot 11 ¾, 214 pounds) is considered more of a box safety. He recorded five interceptions in his 36-game college career, but Reid said he believes Adams can also play free safety.

“No doubt,” Reid said. “The kid can do it all. That’s why they got him projected to go where he is. I believe he could.”

In the 49ers’ new defense, which is based on Seattle’s scheme, Ward is getting a long look at free safety in the team’s minicamp. Ward started at cornerback last season.

After recording seven interceptions in his first two seasons, Reid has one interception over the past two seasons. He played 10 games last season before sustaining a season-ending with a torn biceps.

Reid said he is learning a new position but he believes playing closer to the line of scrimmage suits him. He is set to become a free agent at the end of the season as he plays this year with a salary of $5.676 million on the fifth-year option.

“I’m used to being on the back end,” Reid said. “I’m used to dealing with a lot more space. So, really, it’s the run game. And the run fits, knowing the gap schemes, the run (stunts) and knowing where the D-linemen are going to fit and filling the holes. That’s been the biggest difference for me.

“I like it. I’m a bigger safety in this league, so I think it’ll work for me.”

And what if the 49ers select Adams on Thursday evening?

”That’ll be interesting,” Reid said. “We’d have to battle it out. We’ll see how it goes.”