San Francisco 49ers defensive tackle Justin Smith confirmed Thursday that he’s “100 percent” for training camp.
Smith said he has fully recovered from a triceps injury that hindered him and the 49ers defense late last season.
“We don’t have a lot more time, so I’m ready to go and it feels great,” Smith said Thursday before the first practice of training camp.
Smith started 185 consecutive games before sustaining his arm injury on Dec. 16 against the New England Patriots.
According to Smith, defensive coordinator Vic Fangio wants the defense to clean things up and “get back to basics.”
“Coach Fangio talked to us about it, what we need to improve on, that’s what we went over on the first day so that’s where our focus is going forward,” Smith said. “We need to get back to the basics and start over from scratch a little bit.”
The focus for the 49ers defense during camp will be working on stopping zone-read offenses which will be popular among the teams the 49ers play in 2013.
“It’s something we focused on a bunch,” Smith said. “The read-option, a lot of teams are doing it, but it’s like I said, Wildcat used to be big, too.
“We’ll see what happens. I know as far as our defense is preparing, we’ll be ready to stop it.”
The NFL made thigh and knee pads mandatory equipment for the 2013 season, Smith hasn’t worn them in more than a decade.
“I think the pendulum has swung and it’s swung too far, but that’s the way it goes,” Smith said. “The rule’s a rule. You go with it. If you want to change the rule, you get in position to change the rule… so you put the pads in.”