- Paul Gutierrez, ESPN Staff Writer
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SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- If the main theme of the San Francisco 49ers' first training camp practice under rookie coach was indeed a "sod" story, there were several other layers to irrigate.
The first-team defense for the first training camp practice looked like this -- LDE Glenn Dorsey, NT Ian Williams, RDE Quinton Dial, LOLB Ahmad Brooks, LILB NaVorro Bowman, RILB Nick Moody, ROLB Aldon Smith, LCB Tramaine Brock, RCB Shareece Wright, FS Eric Reid, SS Antoine Bethea.
Colin Kaepernick had an uneven practice, but when he was on, the results were pretty. Such as the time he hooked up with Torrey Smith deep down the right side, beating Marcus Cromartie on a particularly nice throw. But Kaepernick also seemed to revert on a couple of passes, such as the deep ball down the left side that wobbled as it approached Bruce Ellington, giving Kenneth Acker time to react and knock it down.
Smith also had an acrobatic one-handed grab on a Kaepernick out pass to the left sideline.
Someone who did not necessarily shine? Tight end Vernon Davis, who had a drop and also a miscommunication with Kaepernick. Davis was still running in the middle of the field and looking toward the end zone as the ball landed at his side.
The only "words" on the field during the semi-public practice were between Pears and Tony Jerod-Eddie.
The only Niners not cleared to practice are center Daniel Kilgore (ankle), linebacker Michael Wilhoite (leg) and rookie receiver DeAndre Smelter (knee). But running back Reggie Bush was held out by coach Jim Tomsula after the rookie coach saw the 10th-year veteran getting in some extra stretching. "I'm not going to wait to see Reggie tired and (then) give him a break," Tomsula said. "He's been doing this for a long time. Our goal is to not get Reggie tired. He's in shape."
Defensive lineman Darnell Dockett (knee) also sat out, while linebacker Aaron Lynch (hamstring), who came off the NFI list Friday, "did nice work," according to Tomsula. Defensive back Jimmie Ward (foot) worked in individual drills while first-round draft pick Arik Armstead, who missed most of the offseason program due to school being in session at Oregon, did post-practice work with the rookies.
Tomsula, on how Bowman (knee) looked to him: "Wonderful, really good. You saw him moving around really, really well. ... In the spring, we weren't letting him carry anything past 20 yards. You saw him today running down the field. We're rolling."
Breaking the huddle in a timely manner, getting to the line of scrimmage and getting the play off has been an issue for the Niners in recent years. And after the first practice of training camp, Tomsula was happy with the pace. The goal Saturday night was to break the huddle with 22 seconds remaining on the play clock. Tomsula said only twice did it get under that time, and both times with the "young guys" under center.