First impressions

Now that we've had an opportunity to get a good look at a drastically altered 49ers roster over the weekend, we see some things we like and some things we don't.

--- We definitely didn't like seeing Tim Rattay hit the ground in pain on Friday. Say what you want about this guy and his mobility, but he was set up to be a success at quarterback for the team this year. Yes, that's right. He'll be back, but he'll never be as good a quarterback this season as he would have been had he had this entire spring and summer to develop as The Man behind center with the first-team offense.

--- Ken Dorsey is bigger and moves better than Rattay, and we love the fact he's a more physical presence now that he's gained 15 pounds on his 6-foot-4 frame. But he needs more time and experience to be considered a legitimate contender to be playing minutes that count in September.

--- We know one thing about Brandon Doman: The third-string QB keeps himself in great shape. He won the team's endurance ‘beep' test Sunday for the second consecutive year, this time finishing in a dead heat with undrafted free agent receiver P.J. Fleck at 124 beeps.

--- Cody Pickett is big, has a stronger arm than expected and looks as though he has some agility to go along with his natural ability. We'll be talking more about this guy in a couple of years.

--- Andrew Williams has added some significant muscle to his frame and is showing a tremendous burst from the edge. It will be interesting to see how that package looks in pads this year.

--- Undrafted rookie running back Jason Wright was impressive with his burst and change of direction before a leg injury knocked him out of camp after Day 1. If he can stay healthy, he's a challenger for the No. 2 role at tailback behind Kevan Barlow.

--- And that's because Jamal Robertson still can't catch a ball out of the backfield – even the short, dump-off passes. Otherwise, this guy's a dangerous and skilled runner.

--- Derrick Hamilton is going to need some work before he is able to contribute at receiver.

--- Brian Poli-Dixon? He certainly has the size at receiver. His hands and route-running showed some promise, too.

--- Jimmy Williams is the top nickel back right now in the secondary. Shawntae Spencer can't match him for anticipation and polish.

--- But Spencer is so fast that he left his shoe behind him making a cut to defend a quick slant pattern. When this guy gets his technique down, he'll be a factor.

--- Jamie Winborn is back, and looking better than ever. A little neck fusion surgery wasn't going to stop this guy.

--- It looked kind of strange, though, to see inside run-plugger Derek Smith playing the left outside linebacker position with the first-team defense instead of Julian Peterson.

--- But a starting linebacker group of Smith, Winborn and Jeff Ulbrich sure didn't look bad.

--- And you should see rookie Richard Seigler. Even though he's not at 100 percent and was wearing a brace on his knee, he was instinctive, ferocious and quick and displayed good speed returning an interception for a touchdown. The Niners will find a place for him.

--- All that hype about Rashaun Woods' quality size, superior hands and smooth route-running? It's true.

--- With Zack Bronson gone and on his way out of the organization, Ronnie Heard was spending a lot of time at free safety with the first-team defense.

--- But Dwaine Carpenter and Keith Lewis look like the better safeties. It's going to be a nice battle for playing time at that position opposite studly Tony Parrish.

--- Lewis will be more significant in the safety equation than originally thought when he was drafted. By the way, he's wearing No. 28 – John Keith's old number – a pretty good indication Keith no longer is in the team's plans. Give that gritty guy a purple heart.

--- It looks like the Niners are considering giving Terry Jackson some carries at running back again.

--- Greg Randall is a solid addition at tackle. He and Scott Rehberg lining up next to each other gives the Niners a different dimension on the right side and flexibility across the offensive line.

--- Joselio Hanson, who spent last season on the Niners' practice squad, looks like one of the team's best cover corners on the edge now.

--- With Eric Johnson not participating in team drills as a precaution, an athletic-looking Aaron Walker appeared to be a fine and capable fill-in at tight end with the first team.

--- Andy Lee's right leg is going to be a very welcome sight in San Francisco this season. The guy was absolutely booming his punts in his first weekend with the team.

--- Of course, as coach Dennis Erickson pointed out Sunday at the end of mini-camp, "We won't really know what we have until we put on the pads. When you're in underwear, it's hard to tell here."


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