SANTA CLARA -- As other rookies began the 49ers' three-day minicamp Friday, defensive tackle Tank Carradine and running back Marcus Lattimore could only watch practice, restricted by knee injuries that encouragingly are on the mend.

Carradine, a second-round pick, and Lattimore, a fourth-round selection, received positive reports after extensive medical exams at Stanford on Thursday.

"Everything looks good structurally with all the guys that we drafted," coach Jim Harbaugh said.

Carradine, who wore a brace on his right knee, is further along in his rehabilitation from a Nov. 24 torn anterior cruciate ligament.

"I'm very anxious, because I'm also coming off the injury and people want to know, 'Would he really be back?' " said Carradine, a Florida State product who's pegged as a backup to Justin Smith and Ray McDonald.

Lattimore said Harbaugh "stressed" to take time recovering from his second major knee injury in as many seasons, having torn the ACL in his left knee in 2011.

While Harbaugh called it premature to count out Lattimore this season, the coach added: "We're going to have to take a step back in terms of some of the cutting, because we want that inside of the knee to heal fully. But, we're good."

Lattimore is OK with sitting out all season if that's what doctors order. "That'll be fine. Whatever happens over the next few months will determine that," Lattimore said. "If I'm called upon, hopefully I'll be ready."


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  • Safety Eric Reid's first practice produced humble rather than boastful aspirations in his pursuit of Dashon Goldson's former starting spot. "I don't expect, by any means, to start from day one," Reid said. "I want to earn it."

    Reid, drafted 18th overall, sees similarities between himself and Goldson. "We have almost an identical body type. It's kind of weird," said the 6-foot-1, 213-pound Reid. (Goldson goes 6-2, 200.)

    Reid met strong safety Donte Whitner on Friday in the weight room. Having received a playbook during his April 26 visit to the 49ers, Reid said it's put him "ahead of the curve a little."

  • Wide receiver Quinton Patton's first meaningful route in a 49ers uniform was Friday's bee line to meet quarterback Colin Kaepernick. "I spoke to him while he was working out," said Patton, a fourth-round pick. "I said, 'Hi, my name is Quinton.' I wanted his autograph so I could take it back (home)."

    Unlike all the 49ers' other rookies, Patton must return home to Nashville and is unable to report full time to the 49ers until Louisiana Tech finishes classes. Patton had an exceptional afternoon practice, showing off great speed and hands on pass routes and punt returns.

  • Nate Montana, who's in camp on a tryout basis, is shaking off the pressure of measuring up to his famous father, Joe Montana. "At this point in my life, I've been able to just forget about all that and go out and play football," Nate said. "I'm not him. I'm not going to be him. I would like to get to that spot, but it's damn near impossible, obviously."

    Just the same, Montana's father sent Nate to camp with a little bit of helpful advice: "He just said, 'Go out there, be yourself and sling it.' That's what I'm trying to do." Nate Montana went undrafted out of West Virginia Wesleyan, where he concluded his journeyman college career after attending De La Salle High-Concord.

  • Lawrence Okoye, a former British Olympic discus thrower, wasn't fazed by mistakes in his first-ever football practice. "I got a couple calls wrong, but it's all part of the learning process," said the 6-foot-5, 303-pound defensive end. "When we went up against the O-line, it got a bit more difficult but I adjusted." Harbaugh said of Okoye: "There's a lot of great clay there to mold."

  • Defensive tackle Quinton Dial, a fifth-round draft pick, did not practice because of a toe injury that required surgery a few months ago. Undrafted offensive tackle Luke Marquardt (foot) also did not practice.

  • The 49ers' final five draft picks signed four-year contracts: Dial, linebacker Nick Moody, quarterback B.J. Daniels, offensive tackle Carter Bykowski and cornerback Marcus Cooper.

  • USC product and former Raider Brandon Carswell also excelled as a punt returner.

    Staff writer Steve Corkran contributed to this report.