Wednesday's NFL: Garoppolo, Samuel not practicing with 49ers at start of camp
Santa Clara, Calif. — Jimmy Garoppolo got his throwing done early and then didn't take part in the first practice of training camp for the San Francisco 49ers as the team hopes to find a trade partner for the former starter.
Star receiver Deebo Samuel was a “hold in” on Day 1 of camp, running on the side while his teammates practiced as his representatives work on getting a new contract.
As the 49ers began on-field work at training camp Wednesday, they still had a few issues to resolve.
While finding a trade partner for Garoppolo may be harder than working out a new contract with Samuel it's much less critical.
Samuel was the focal point on San Francisco’s offense last season when he gained 1,770 yards from scrimmage and scored 14 touchdowns. Getting him on the field working with new starting quarterback Trey Lance is important this summer but apparently will have to wait until Samuel gets a new contract.
Samuel is entering the final year of his rookie deal that will pay him less than $4 million in 2022, while 12 receivers have contracts worth at least $20 million a year after an offseason spending spree at the position.
“We all know there’s a lot going on with Deebo right now,” coach Kyle Shanahan said. “They’re talking nonstop right now so we’ll see what happens. ... I just had a great conversation with Deebo so regardless what happens, he’ll go out and condition on the side and we’ll see where he’s at. Hopefully we can figure something out soon but we’re in a good place today."
The Niners have committed to moving on from Garoppolo but the process was delayed this offseason because he was recovering from shoulder surgery.
Garoppolo was officially cleared when he passed his physical Tuesday but he isn't taking part in practice as the Niners try to find a trade partner.
“He was in this morning doing his throwing program,” Shanahan said. "He came in, did that and he got out. I’ll stay in communication with Jimmy. We’ll keep doing that and take it one day at a time.”
Lance looked comfortable in his role as starter even though he mostly threw short passes in his first practice of the summer.
But he has built on a strong offseason program and is showing increased confidence and leadership in his second season.
“Each time you get more and more comfortable just based off of not only the work that he put in away, but just having some success in the spring and then coming back,” said receiver Brandon Aiyuk, who worked out with Lance the past month in Southern California. “You can hear it from him the way he's calling plays and commanding the offense.”
Cards hopeful WR Brown isn't out long with hamstring injury
Glendale, Ariz. — The Arizona Cardinals are hopeful that newly acquired receiver Marquise Brown won't miss much time with an injured hamstring.
The team put Brown on the active/non-football injury list on Tuesday, meaning the receiver counts toward the 90-man preseason roster but can't practice or play until he's removed from the list.
Coach Kliff Kingsbury said Brown hurt his hamstring last week while he was running routes.
“We’re just being precautionary,” Kingsbury said. “We know when he practices, he practices hard. He’s going to put in the work. So we want to make sure when he comes back, he’s full strength.”
Brown's health is crucial because the Cardinals are counting on him to fill the void left by DeAndre Hopkins, who will miss the first six games of the season after violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancers.
The Cardinals acquired Brown and a third-round pick from Baltimore during the draft in April, sending the No. 23 overall pick to the Ravens in return. Brown caught 91 passes last season for 1,007 yards and six touchdowns, big numbers in the run-heavy offense that Baltimore prefers.
Arizona's more wide-open approach could boost Brown's production. He already has a rapport with Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray after the two played together in college at Oklahoma.
Brown is joining a receiver group that includes Hopkins, veteran A.J. Green, second-year speedster Rondale Moore, Antoine Wesley and Andy Isabella.
Shanahan, Holmgren, Kraft among Hall of Fame finalists
Canton, Ohio — Super Bowl-winning coaches Mike Shanahan and Mike Holmgren are among 24 seniors, coaches and contributors selected as finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023.
Shanahan, who led the Denver Broncos to consecutive Super Bowl titles, and Holmgren, who won with the Green Bay Packers, are joined by 10 other coaches/contributors, including New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and former Cleveland Browns/Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell.
The list of 12 former players includes four-time Pro Bowl quarterback Ken Anderson and five-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Sterling Sharpe.
The 12-person Seniors Committee will meet Aug. 16, and each committee member will present one finalist. The committee’s final vote will send three Seniors to the full 49-person Selection Committee for consideration at its annual meeting in early 2023. Each of those three could be elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame at that meeting.
Expansion of the Seniors pool to three for possible election to the Hall was approved earlier this year for the Classes of 2023, 2024 and 2025.
The remaining list of players: linebackers Randy Gradishar, Maxie Baughan, Tommy Nobis and Chuck Howley; offensive linemen Bob Kuechenberg; two-way player Cecil Isbell; defensive linemen Joe Klecko and cornerbacks Eddie Meador, Ken Riley and Everson Walls.
The remaining list of coaches/contributors: television executive and producer Roone Arledge; coach Don Coryell; front-office executive Frank “Bucko” Kilroy; coach Buddy Parker; coach Dan Reeves; Steelers vice president Art Rooney Jr.; coach Clark Shaughnessy; and long-time executive John Wooten.