San Francisco 49ers

Ready to rumble? 49ers head to Baltimore for joint practices

If 49ers training camp has seemed friskier than a traditional Jim Harbaugh-led camp, it’s because there’s more competition than there’s ever been. This according to Colin Kaepernick, who spoke to reporters before the team flew to Baltimore.

“The first year everyone was just trying to understand and fit in,” Kaepernick said. “I think now everyone is confident in what our offense is doing, what our defense is doing. And we feel that we have such a high caliber of player here that getting a starting spot, getting a spot on this roster is difficult, and people are fighting for those jobs. And I think that’s where a lot of the tension, a lot of the frustration comes in.”

Compared to a normal NFL training camp, there haven’t been a lot of fights in Santa Clara this summer. Under Mike Nolan, for instance, practice-field scuffles were a near-daily occurrence. But they’ve been few and far between in the last three seasons under Harbaugh, who has preached a let’s-take-care-of-each other atmosphere.

There have been at least three so far in this year’s camp, and now the 49ers are off to face the Ravens four times in five days. Following Thursday’s game in Baltimore, the teams will hold joint practices Saturday-Monday.

At least one Raven thinks a few fists will be thrown.

“Hold on, we share a cafeteria, too?,” cornerback Jimmy Smith asked, via The Baltimore Sun. “I don’t know how [joint practices] work. I’ve seen it on TV. But every time I’ve seen it on TV there’s been nothing but fights.”