Day 16: Staley Returns and 49ers Prep for KC

The 49ers were in shells again Wednesday, their last open practice before getting on a plane Thursday night for Kansas City to play their second preseason game. Left tackle Joe Staley returned to action for the first time in a week as the team had a relaxed but competitive practice heavy on 11-on-11 drills. Lawrence Okoye capped the day with a dance.

On the Field

Fresh off their first fight of training camp, which head coach Jim Harbaugh condemned, the San Francisco 49ers were a relaxed team on the practice field in Santa Clara Wednesday. Their late-afternoon session had more full-team drills than other in training camp.

After missing four days of practice with an undisclosed injury, left tackle Joe Staley returned and received sparse reps with the first team. Adam Snyder worked in as Staley was eased back into the fold. Staley will not play Friday night in Kansas city.

The highlight of the practice came during a one-minute drill, when Colt McCoy led the first team offense against the starting defense down the field ending to a controversial Chad Hall touchdown.

Setting up the play was a 20-yard, back-shoulder throw to A.J. Jenkins down the left sideline where he beat Tarell Brown to the ball, despite Brown's inside position. It was one of Jenkins' better catches of training camp as he attacked the ball agressively.

McCoy then hit Jewel Hampton and Kassim Osgood on back-to-back plays for short gains before stopping the clock with a spike. The next play he hit Hall on a 10-yard fade pattern in the back left corner of the end zone. Hall tipped the ball to himself with one hand and came down with the catch. Donte Whitner had good coverage on the play and argued Hall had gone out of bounds before coming back in and making the catch.

The offensive sideline, linemen in particular, erupted when made the catch in one of the most celebrated plays of training camp. Whitner maintained his argument, but it fell on deaf ears.

Although he wasn't in the one-minute drill, Colin Kaepernick received the most reps of any practice this camp. In first-team on first-team drills midway through practice, he saw seven-straight snaps, completing four of five passes.

Early in practice during seven-on-sevens, Kaepernick hit MarQueis Gray - who had his second-straight good session - in the right side of the end zone where he high-pointed the ball beating rookie safety Eric Reid for the score.

The practice ended with rookie quarterback B.J. Daniels heading the reserve offense for 12-straight snaps, completing five of nine passes.

Wednesday's session was the last of the season that was open to the media. And following drills, former British Olympian and defensive lineman Lawrence Okoye was encouraged by his teammates to do "The Dougie" as the song played over the loud speakers. Okoye is the largest British Olympian to ever attempt the dance on a football field, unofficially.

In the Press Tent

Harbaugh addressed Tuesday's scuffle between safeties C.J. Spillman and Michael Thomas, saying the issue had been addressed and offered no additional comment. It does not appear there will be any discipline for either player. Spillman was sent to the locker room following the incident while Thomas continued to practice.

Regarding Friday night's game in Kansas City, Harbaugh said "it's possible" the starters play longer than they did in last Thursday's loss to the Broncos. Kaepernick played just one drive and completed all four of his passes before the team settled for a field goal.

Harbaugh also said he expects all four quarterbacks to play Friday. Daniels did not see any snaps as a quarterback against Denver.

Kaepernick took the podium and was asked about Alex Smith's influence on him during his first two seasons in the NFL.

"He did a lot for me," Kaepernick said. "Alex was someone that really helped me pick up the play book and understand what we wanted to get done and how to do it. So I wouldn't as far along as I am right now without him."

"He's a great guy. He's a class act. I have nothing bad to say about him. He's always helped me, always put the team first. He's a great all-around guy."

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