Cardinals outside linebacker Haason Reddick is still trying to find his way as an edge rusher.
Haason Reddick is a "work-in-progress" as a pass rusher, coach Bruce Arians said, and the rookie outside linebacker sees himself trending upward.
"I'd say each week, especially from the Philly game (his first start there) to the last two games, I've been getting better and progressing," Reddick said. "Now, it's the time to get the stats. The stats and the sacks to go with that progression, the numbers to go with the work I've been putting in."
Reddick was always expected to play a hybrid inside/outside linebacker role, although he was dedicated to inside all offseason and training camp as Deone Bucannon recovered from ankle surgery. When
Bucannon returned – and starting outside linebacker Markus Golden was lost for the season with an ACL injury – Reddick was moved outside as a starter.
It hasn't been productive as of yet. According to Pro Football Focus, Reddick has rushed the passer on 98 snaps this season, the vast majority since he was moved outside. He has only seven pressures, all coming as an edge rusher. He has yet to record a sack.
"He missed all of spring and all of training camp as far as going against guys this size," Arians said. "He's getting pressure; he's just not getting home. He needs to get home more often. Bull-rushing college guys and bull-rushing these guys are two different things."
Reddick has quickly come to understand that.
"There are definitely some of moves that I did in college that won't work on this level," Reddick said. "Some of those things in college won't be as efficient on this level just because you're going against guys who have been in the league for a long time and have seen a lot.
"I understand now I can't just run around guys. I have to give them a little something to be successful and get back to the player that I am, the player I know I can be."
CARDINALS PADDING UP
Teams are allowed one week a season where they can have two padded practices. Arians said that will be this week, both Wednesday and Thursday. The Cardinals are not only coming off a bye but also because the Cardinals have a short week next week with a Thursday night home game against Seattle and are unlikely to have a hard practice at all.
"I wish we could practice in pads every day," Arians said. "Every time we do we have great practices."
NEW NINERS QB GAROPPOLO WON'T PLAY SUNDAY
The 49ers made a splashy trade to acquire new quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo from the Patriots this week, but in terms of him playing against the Cardinals, coach Kyle Shanahan said he was "trying my hardest to not allow that to happen right now."
Shanahan added that the only way Garoppolo will play is if there was an injury to current starter C.J. Beathard. The Niners could also add another quarterback before the weekend.
"I don't have expectations right now," Shanahan said of Garoppolo. "I just want him to learn, see how much he can soak in. You don't really understand what a challenge it is for someone to come in in the middle of the season, especially at the quarterback position.
"We didn't bring Jimmy here just to save the season. We brought him here because we saw an opportunity to improve our organization."
Defensive tackle Frostee Rucker (knee/hip) and linebacker Karlos Dansby (finger/hamstring) did not practice Wednesday with veterans days off, Arians said. Arians said wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald was slated for a day off as well but decided to practice. Running back Andre Ellington (quad) also returned to practice on a limited basis, while receivers Brittan Golden (groin) and Chad Williams (back) were also limited.
The 49ers have a lengthy injury list. Not practicing were defensive end Elvis Dumervil (vets day), guard Brandon Fusco (bicep), receiver Pierre Garcon (neck), tackle Garry Gilliam (knee), defensive tackle D.J. Jones (knee), defensive end Aaron Lynch (calf), tackle Joe Staley (eye), defensive end Solomon Thomas (knee) and cornerback K'Waun Williams (quad). Running back Matt Breida (knee) and linebacker Reuben Foster (ribs) were both limited.