This is traditionally the week in the NFL preseason when the San Diego Chargers and San Francisco 49ers would be fine-tuning their first-team offense. For the 49ers, their 4:00 pm EST game at Levi’s Stadium represents a do-over and chance to get the starting offense showing signs of life.
The 0-2 49ers lost their first game in Levi’s Stadium 0-34 last Sunday against the Broncos. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick and the rest of the San Francisco offense went back to practice this week to iron out timing issues. Instead they ironed out a field issue, replacing a large swath of turf that was hurting their play.
The Eagles played on a new field Thursday, so today’s 49ers game shouldn’t interfere with Kaepernick as he tries to right the offense. Nor should it interfere with running back LaMichael James, who’s making his preseason debut in today’s Chargers game.
James dislocated his elbow on July 27 and wasn’t expected to play in the preseason. He will wear a brace on the arm in today’s Chargers / 49ers game as he re-joins a 49ers backfield that includes Frank Gore and second-round pick Carlos Hyde. Through two preseason games Hyde has 50 yards on nine carries.
While the 49ers work on their offense today, the San Diego Chargers will be experimenting with their defense. Inside linebacker Manti Te’o will miss today’s 49ers game in Levi’s Stadium due to a sprained left foot. His backup is Reggie Walker, who will get time today next to Donald Butler with the Charger’ starting defense.
Walker started six games for San Diego last year, finishing with 42 tackles, five for a loss, and three sacks. With the status of Te’o unclear, Walker will be out to prove himself against the highly mobile Kaepernick, Gore and the returning LaMichael James.
Today’s San Diego Chargers / San Francisco 49ers game kicks off at 4pm EST from Levi’s Stadium. The game’s televised on FOX, but you can also watch Chargers vs 49ers live online free preseason week 3 if you’ve signed-up for the NFL Preseason Live service. That program lets fans watch all preseason NFL games for $19.99. NFL Network subscribers have another option to watch the game live on the NFL Online website. All that’s required there is to enter your login info for your satellite or cable TV provider.