It was just last week that the 49ers gave Solomon Thomas a huge payday. The team signed its No. 1 draft choice to a four-year deal that could be worth as much as $28 million, including a signing bonus of $18.6 million.
Already, the 49ers are seeing indications the investment could soon pay big dividends.
In drills and practices so far, Thomas has impressed head coach Kyle Shanahan. The rookie defensive lineman from Stanford — who is expected to play outside and inside — has looked especially quick and strong in one-on-one pass-rushing drills.
Shanahan told reporters after practice Monday at training camp that Thomas again had a good workout.
“He had a real good pass rush in the first one-on-one, doubled a guy up, got right to the quarterback,” Shanahan said, according to Joe Fann of 49ers.com. “You can see his quickness that we saw on tape with his feet and everything. He’s still trying to get used to the scheme and play against some different type of personnel, but he’s definitely making some plays out there that you can see. And he’s definitely having some plays where it’s like, ‘All right, it was his second day. Just be patient.’”
While Thomas was winning battles against most blockers, starting right tackle Trent Brown was holding his own.
Twice, Brown won duels against Thomas.
“I fared pretty well,” Brown said, according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. “I’m still undefeated in one-on-ones.”
The 49ers’ first exhibition game is set for Aug. 11 in Kansas City vs. the Chiefs.