Practice 1: Ward intercepts pass on third play of 49ers practice

Practice 1: Ward intercepts pass on third play of 49ers practice
July 24, 2014, 5:00 pm
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Jimmie Ward recorded 11 interceptions in his career at Northern Illinois, including seven as a senior. (AP)

SANTA CLARA –- It did not take long for first-round draft pick Jimmie Ward to make his mark on the 49ers’ practice field.

In his first full-squad practice since being selected with the No. 30 overall pick, Ward on Thursday intercepted a Colin Kaepernick pass on the third play of practice during a 7-on-7 drill.

"I couldn't participate in the (offseason program), so really I was just taking it in, being a sponge and taking in all that information," Ward said. "I finally got to come out here, and now I'm trying to prove myself."

Cornerback Chris Cook broke up a Kaepernick pass intended for Stevie Johnson, and Ward came flying into the picture to make a sprawling interception.

[RELATED: 49ers RB Lattimore sidelined by leg ailments]

Inside linebacker Chris Borland also deserves credit on the play having good coverage on an underneath route.

Ward sat out the entire offseason program after undergoing foot surgery prior to the draft. Ward was cleared to practice last week when the 49ers rookies reported to training camp.

Other notes from the first day of training camp:

--Defensive lineman Justin Smith and right tackle Anthony Davis did not practice. Both players have been cleared after undergoing offseason shoulder surgery. But the 49ers are obviously taking it slow with both veterans. Jonathan Martin saw action at right tackle in place of Davis.

--Guard Alex Boone continued to holdout. Boone does not plan to report to training camp without a new contract, according to sources.

--Vernon Davis had two catches during team work, but the tight end who had the best day was Vance McDonald. The second-year player made an outstanding leaping catch at the sideline from Kaepernick over the tight coverage of safety Antoine Bethea.

--LaMichael James continued to look steady fielding punts. Devon Wylie, who is battling for a roster spot, muffed a punt that was recovered by C.J. Spillman.

--Stevie Johnson rose high to make a catch of a Blaine Gabbert pass at the sideline against rookie cornerback Dontae Johnson.

--Rookie running back Carlos Hyde, who demonstrated good hands throughout the offseason program, dropped two short passes.

--Wide receiver Brandon Lloyd made an acrobatic catch along the left sideline against the coverage of Darryl Morris.

--Outside linebacker Aldon Smith picked off a short dump-off pass from Kaepernick during 7-on-7 drills.

* * *

The 49ers return to practice Friday at 2:30 p.m.

* * *

Participation report
Did not practice: DL Justin Smith, RT Anthony Davis.
Physically unable to perform: LB NaVorro Bowman (knee), NT Ian Williams (lower leg), TE Garrett Celek (back), LB Aaron Lynch (hamstring), Kaleb Ramsey (NA).
Non-football injury: RB Marcus Lattimore (knee/hamstring), WR Bruce Ellington (ankle), C Marcus Martin (ankle), FB Trey Millard (knee), CB Keith Reaser (knee) and G Brandon Thomas (knee).
Reserve/did not report: RG Alex Boone.


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