San Francisco 49ers

49ers Q&A: Why not start Eli Harold? What happened to Brandon Thomas?

Virginia defensive ends Eli Harold (7) and Max Valles (88) celebrate after Harold recovered a fumble by Maryland quarterback Caleb Rowe in the first half of an NCAA college football game in College Park, Md., Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013.
Virginia defensive ends Eli Harold (7) and Max Valles (88) celebrate after Harold recovered a fumble by Maryland quarterback Caleb Rowe in the first half of an NCAA college football game in College Park, Md., Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013. AP

William Clements ‏@wgclements

Q: Will 9ers likely give up on Lemonier and play the rook? Max 4 win season anyway. Y not develop players? (Keep the video)

ANSW: A year ago, then-rookie Aaron Lynch slowly but surely received more snaps as the season went on. If Ahmad Brooks is out of action for a while, I'd expect the same scenario with the rook, Eli Harold. It might be that Corey Lemonier plays base downs at ROLB with Harold in on passing downs, especially early on. As Harold gets more seasoning? My guess is that he eventually takes over as the starter.

Tony Campbell ‏@IAMTCAMPBELL

Q: What's the latest on Michael Wilhote and where is Brandon Thomas on the depth chart ?

Jesus ‏@jesus41501

Q: What happened with Brandon Thomas? One week he's doing great then next week he's running with the 3rd stringers.

ANSW: Wilhoite is in line to start today's game and presumably will start the season next to NaVorro Bowman. He's trying to catch up physically after missing the first three and a half weeks of training camp. I watched him run wind sprints for 20 or so minutes after the practices in Denver. To borrow a phrase from Jim Tomsula, he blew his lungs out. ... As for Thomas, he's been playing left guard with the second-team unit for the last week or so. The 49ers want all of their linemen to be able to play multiple spots in case that lineman is in uniform on game day and there's an injury among the starters. I suppose there's still a chance he starts at right guard. (?) The preseason finale is Thursday and they still haven't settled on a starting center/right guard. To me, that's cutting it awfully close.

esse ‏@bigyoke74

Q: With Anquan and Torrey as the 1 & 2 receivers (unless they retire..) and Simpson suspended who is going to be the #3 WR?

ANSW: In my mind, DeAndrew White has consistently been the best of the challengers this offseason and in training camp. But the job probably will go to Quinton Patton.

Michael Rally ‏@Michael_RA

Q: Will the #49ers trade a RB?

ANSW: Don't think so. If I were a team in need of a running back, I might wait until cut-down day and scour the waiver wire. If the 49ers move a player, my *guess* is that it's a defensive lineman, perhaps a cornerback.

sakeng ‏@santhkeng

Q: I know Tank is much larger than in college, but he still has some speed and could be a handle outside with a little room

ANSW: Yes, I suppose there was some question as Tank Carradine was coming out of college in 2013 as to whether the 49ers would make him a defensive lineman or an outside linebacker. They went with the former, obviously. And I think they're too far down that path to turn back now. The 49ers' OLBs have more coverage responsibility in Eric Mangini's scheme than they had previously. Carradine would be terrible in that regard.

Niner Gnome ‏@NinerGnome

Q: Jarryd Hayne will be the #1 selling Jersey why not make it official? He's crushing it and he's the #1 custom Jersey already

ANSW: Cut-down day is right around the corner. Hayne is three inches from the cup. All he needs to do is tap it in from here.

9ERBOB ‏@9erbob

What are the possibilities Baalke making a trade for RGIII? I am kidding. Baalke, don't even think about it!

ANSW: Hmm. Damaged goods, reduced price tag, former knee injury. He checks an awful lot of boxes.

Kyle Mauseth ‏@KyleMauseth

Q: Bigger concern, O-line or pass rush?

ANSW: Bigger concern, tsunami or avalanche? (they're both bad).

Matt Barrows: @mattbarrows, read more about the team at sacbee.com/sf49ers.

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