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What Happened On Day 7
July 30 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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The 49ers mystique has returned. There’s no doubt about that. Players are more focused, and with the added rest that coach Mariucci gave them this weekend, they were ready on Monday to give one of their best performances of camp to the coach. It was most certainly a promising day in Stockton.

Kevan Barlow had quite a day. Barlow had a few good runs up the middle of the field, one for a touchdown where Steve Mariucci came chasing after him to congratulate him. But he also lost his cool, when dashing through the line of scrimmage he was taken down by a crushing blow to the lower legs. Barlow picked up the defensive end and was ready to open up a can of whoop--- but the two were separated very quickly. Despite the fans “Fight, fight, fight” chant, nothing amounted from it. Of course, Barlow lost his cool because of the potential for injury on such a hit, that certainly has no place in training camp.

Frank Strong again caught coaches’ eyes. In a running back and linebacker drill, in which the running backs have to try and protect coach Rathman - playing quarterback, from the linebackers who have a ten yard free run at them. Strong got by Beasley on one of his attempts, and really took it to Hearst who somehow held his own. Beasley did not allow any other penetration through the day.

In the same drill, Jamie Winborn looked very explosive and was really taking it to the running backs. While Beasley, Hearst and Paul excelled for most of their repetitions, Terry Jackson, who is playing lighter, did experience some difficulties. Paul Smith also looked lethal on kick returns, blocking and running through the coverage units.

Eric Johnson is really bringing the tight end spot back to how Brent Jones used to play it. Whole Johnson still has a way to go, before he can be put in the class of Jones (who caught over 400 passes from the tight end position), he is certainly giving Garcia another comfortable down field option. The two have consistently hooked up for first down yardage down field.

At cornerback, Mike Rumph is certainly improving. He continues to match up against Terrell Owens, and while he’s been beaten at one point by every receiver on the team, he’s also beaten every receiver on the team at one point. In facing Owens, Rumph is going up against one of the best. The intelligent player is making adjustments on the fly, and is beginning to show a comfort level on the team. Cornerback John Booker has lots of time in the defense today. Mixed reports from camp say he was substituting for Jason Webster, who either saw reduced time or did not suit up for practice.

Josh Shaw made his first appearance with the team on Monday. Shaw warmed up with the defensive lineman, but spent the bulk of his time working with Derek Smith and Jamal Robertson with the strength and conditioning team. Shaw looked quite fast, running, but not yet cutting, while Robertson is expected back shortly. Nate Jackson returned to regular practice but was favoring his injured shoulder.

Quarterback Bradon Doman looks good when not faced with pressure and given the time to make a decision. He has lots of zip on his passes, and can certainly thread the needle. Doman however is still hesitant and as with every rookie quarterback, he is prone to make mistakes when the heat is on.

Quietly Cedrick Wilson, Julian Peterson, Zack Bronson, Chike Okeafor, John Engelberger and Rashad Holman also had good days in practice.

The field goal competition continued, neither kicker was perfect on Monday, but the competition continues to be neck in neck. The two kickers had their first opportunities to practice kickoffs as well, though neither really stood out as better than the other in this area too.

The team also made a roster move on Monday as they released Kenny Harris. The team worked out center Ben Fricke who may have been signed.

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