Preseason is a time for teams to ignore the wins and losses that drive the regular season and ensure their players are showing the right form to carry them into the games that count.
The San Francisco 49ers were at a disadvantage in this regard, with the lockout limiting the time they could adapt to the new scheme brought in by incoming coach Jim Harbaugh.
With this in mind, players would have less time to get prepared and would have fewer opportunities to make their marks on the new coaching staff. Mistakes would be more forgivable given the limited preparation time.
Despite this unusually quick learning period, a few players have earned special recognition for their ineffective efforts during the first two weeks of the preseason.
Here are five San Francisco 49ers who have disappointed this preseason.
Anthony Davis, a first-round draft pick in 2010, has been underwhelming this preseason after showing some growing pains in his rookie campaign.
Davis has been drawn into sloppy false start penalties in both preseason games and has struggled when opposing defenses have threatened heavy rushes in his direction.
Davis' inconsistent play will most likely open the door for fellow tackle Alex Boone to potentially grab his starting gig.
I understand that criticizing a guy who hasn't played this offseason seems unfair.
But the Niners were hoping to have wide receiver Michael Crabtree in for preseason after he had missed time in training camp in both of his first two seasons with the team.
While wide receivers Braylon Edwards and Joshua Morgan have both impressed in the preseason, having Crabtree in and showing signs of progress would allow for the Niners to better gauge what should be one of the best receiving units the team has had in years.
The latest rumors have Crabtree possibly able to return in a matter of days. Let's hope Crabtree can fit in with Edwards and the new West Coast offense quickly.
With rookie Bruce Miller impressing Coach Harbaugh in Saturday's action (springing key blocks on several big offensive plays and making a nice catch for a nine-yard gain), the pressure fell to veteran fullback Moran Norris to make things happen.
Unfortunately for Norris, things were not happening and he was not as effective as he has been. The 33-year-old showed his age, struggling Saturday to make blocks while working with the first-team offense.
If you take the word of CSN's Matt Maiocco, Norris could find himself off the team pretty soon if his play does not step up.
Yes, I know this is more than one player. The play of the unit has just been that bad.
The Niners coverage teams have struggled mightily in protecting against the big returns in the first two weeks of the preseason.
First, the New Orleans Saints' Joseph Morgan (pictured, left) weaved in and out of the Niners defenders to score a 78-yard touchdown.
Following it up, the Oakland Raiders' Denarius Moore blazed past the coverage to lay on a 48-yard kickoff return.
While it could be argued the coverage has lacked due to the shifting lineups for these situations, I would not be surprised to see Coach Harbaugh spend extra time during practice this week to ensure their spacing and positioning for future returns.
Wide receiver Ted Ginn Jr. performed well last season after being acquired from the Miami Dolphins, but his future by the Bay has not been helped by his play this preseason.
He has also been outshined in return duties. Rookie Kendall Hunter and second-year returner Phillip Adams have both put in solid work returning punts in the first two weeks of preseason.
Even worse, league rule changes for kickoffs mean fewer opportunities to make himself useful.
The rise in new talent for special teams means that more emphasis would be placed on Ginn's receiving skills. However, Ginn has had several drops in practice and has not made any major waves during the first two preseason games.
Ginn must prove now that he not only deserves playing time, but a spot on the roster.