Aiyuk details aftermath from on-field conflict with Warner originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
The two players have kept their fierce competition at a fever pitch throughout training camp but have refrained from taking it past the whistle since coach Kyle Shanahan found it necessary to stop practice last week. Aiyuk sees it as a natural result of the competition level on the team.
“It’s the middle of camp,” Aiyuk said on Sunday. “Everybody is a competitor out there. I’m tired of seeing them. I like playing with them, because for some reason, we talk about it all the time, we got into an argument about how if offense played the defense we would beat the brakes off of them.”
Warner has previously explained that he wants to see the best from Aiyuk causing him to be the linebacker’s focus during team drills. While they have stopped the physicality after the play has ended, the intensity is still there while they are on the field with each other.
There is confidence on both sides of the ball with a back-and-forth since the start of training camp, and Aiyuk is not innocent when it comes to verbal challenges aimed at the defense. There is a healthy rivalry between the two.
“I think they felt that a little bit because the day after practice they came with it, we came with it,” Aiyuk said. “That’s just how we play. You turn on the tape and you watch the Niners nobody is backing down to anyone so I feel like when we go against each other and people butt heads, that’s what happens. I’m not backing down, he’s not backing down either.”
Once the team is back in the locker room, it’s one big family across the entire roster. Many players have spoken about how each side will share what they saw on the field and ways to improve their technique.
The training camp rivalry between Aiyuk and Warner isn’t over, but their focus will turn to opponents as the preseason gets under way. The club will also have two joint practices with the Minnesota Vikings to avert their attention from each other.
“At the end of the day that’s my brother when we go back in the locker room, that’s my brother when we leave,” Aiyuk said. “That’s my brother so it is what it is. We’ve moved on.”