Vikings left tackle Christian Darrisaw bookended Wednesday's joint practice with the 49ers chatting with luminaries on the offensive line.
Before practice, he spoke with 49ers left tackle Trent Williams, whom he's long idolized since growing up near FedEx Field in Landover, Md., where Williams used to play for Washington. Afterward, Vikings legend Randall McDaniel grabbed Darrisaw for a chat on the practice fields at TCO Performance Center.
They give Darrisaw, the 2021 first-round pick, a high standard to reach. But he's got a better chance entering his second NFL season now that he's not hampered by the sports hernia that required two surgeries last year. Darrisaw said he's playing pain free and coaches are praising his development.
"It feels great," Darrisaw said. "It's not like trying to restrict yourself from doing certain moves and stuff like that. I feel great. Getting that chemistry together as a whole offensive line, a whole offense; sky's the limit."
Darrisaw has received strong reviews from coaches and teammates at Vikings training camp this month. Practice reps against edge rushers Danielle Hunter and Za'Darius Smith are critical for a 23-year-old tackle who was held out of his rookie training camp and the first four games last season.
"Missing everything, in a sense," Darrisaw said. "Because when the season comes, it's not really full speed [in practices]."
"Now it's like full go, full speed, getting the best work," he added.
Darrisaw has impressed first-year head coach Kevin O'Connell with his talents and understanding of the game, setting up a possible ascension.
"He's so physically gifted," O'Connell said. "The strength, he's got great feet, he's got the length to play that position. It's tough with some of the rushers they have to go against, but I think it's an underrated thing we don't talk about enough. The game makes sense to him. He's not one of those guys that needs to be told every little thing."
49ers see yellow
The first joint practice was physical between Vikings receivers and 49ers defensive backs. After an initial one-on-one rep with early contact, receiver Adam Thielen told the referees: "Throw the flag if you're going to be out here." Officials responded with four flags on 49ers defenders for illegal contact, most being obvious infractions.
Receiver Trishton Jackson was shoved to the ground on one flagged play and did not appear to return, watching the rest of practice while hobbling on the sideline. Receiver Dan Chisena was already held out because of a leg injury suffered in Sunday's exhibition loss to the Raiders.
- Rookie Ed Ingram took every rep as the first-team right guard while veteran Jesse Davis mixed in with the second-team offense. Davis, who started with the Vikings offense in Las Vegas, continues to wear a support on his right knee.
- Tight end Irv Smith Jr. (thumb), guard/center Chris Reed (undisclosed), Chisena (leg) and defensive tackle Jullian Taylor (hand) did not practice. Reed, who has been sidelined for about a week, watched practice with a sleeve on his right arm.
- Both two-minute drills from quarterbacks Kirk Cousins and Kellen Mond ended with mock game-winning field goals from kicker Greg Joseph. Mond got the bulk of the second-team work on Wednesday, with his best throw being a deep, arcing ball that receiver Bisi Johnson leapt to corral in the hurry-up session.
- Joseph made six of eight field goal attempts on the day with a long of 50 yards. His two misses came from 45 and 48 yards while backup punter Ryan Wright was holding.
- Former Vikings offensive linemen Jeremiah Sirles and Alex Boone were in attendance. Sirles is now a player agent, representing 49ers tackle Sam Schlueter.