SANTA CLARA -– Coach Jim Tomsula downplays the importance of the 49ers’ depth chart, but a couple defensive changes were notable during Wednesday’s practice.
In just his second day back to 11-on-11 work, Aaron Lynch lined up at left outside linebacker with the 49ers’ first unit in place of Corey Lemonier. And impressive first-year player Keith Reaser continued to work with the first unit at left cornerback. Reaser has taken over for veteran Shareece Wright, who has lined up with that squad since the opening of camp.
Lynch has been nursing an undisclosed back injury that prevented him from taking part in team work through the first two weeks of training camp. He saw his weight rise to 280 pounds, he said. But, now, he’s back close to his preferred playing weight at just under 270 pounds.
The 49ers made some interesting adjustments with their pass defense after surrendering 254 yards passing in the exhibition opener against the Houston Texans. In addition to Reaser’s ascent to the first team, Kenneth Acker moved into a role at left corner in the 49ers’ nickel defense, with Brock sliding inside to the nickel back position.
As part of the 49ers’ alignment with six defensive backs, impressive rookie safety Jaquiski Tartt entered the action in place of a linebacker.
Acker and Wright lined up at the cornerback positions with the 49ers’ second-team defense. Reaser was the second-team nickel back. Dontae Johnson was moved to the third team.
Scuffling along: Tank Carradine mixed it up on the practice field for the second day in a row. However, this time was with receiver Quinton Patton, who reportedly took a swipe at Carradine, who outweighs him by at least 90 pounds. When Carradine tried to retaliate, Patton quickly back-pedaled away, according to reports. Tomsula halted practice to admonish is team.
A day earlier, Tomsula was also in the middle of the action when linebacker Nick Moody restrained Carradine from going after a defensive teammate on the sideline. Earlier in camp, Tomsula said he sometimes has to play traffic cop.
“I thought I was going to be a tow truck,” Tomsula said. “Yeah, we handed out a couple citations yesterday. No, it’s the dog days of camp and it gets heated here and there.
This ‘n’ that: : Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert both made tremendous throws at the sideline within a period of four plays during an 11-on-11 session. Kaepernick fit a post pattern into a tight window for tight end Vernon Davis, who had a step on Tartt about 25 yards down the field. And Gabbert dropped nice pass on a running back Reggie Bush on a wheel route. The throw was placed just out of the reach of linebacker Eli Harold for the completion. . . Jerome Simpson, who continues to practice after being sentenced to a six-game suspension at the start of the regular season for violating the league’s policy on substances of abuse, dropped a perfect pass on a slant route. . . During a special-teams period, Kaepernick went to a side field and worked on throwing go routes to Torrey Smith and Vernon Davis. . . Offensive lineman Jordan Devey, acquired Tuesday in a trade with the New England Patrots for tight end Asante Cleveland, was assigned No. 69. . . Defensive lineman Tony Jerod-Eddie recorded a would-be sack of Kaepernick after beating right guard Marcus Martin in pass protection.
Daily transactions: The 49ers activated linebacker Nick Bellore off the active/non-football illness list.
Did not practice: WR Bruce Ellington (leg strain), LB Philip Wheeler (leg strain), DL Glenn Dorsey (leg strain), TE Derek Carrier (illness)
Physically unable to perform: C Daniel Kilgore (left leg)
Non-football injury/illness: LB Michael Wilhoite (leg), WR DeAndre Smelter (knee)
Next practice: The 49ers practice Thursday at 2:40 p.m. The practice is closed to the general public.