Crews scramble to replace turf at 49ers' new stadium before Sunday's game

David Louie Image
Thursday, August 21, 2014
Ground crews are rushing to finish laying down the new turf at the new 49ers' new stadium
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Ground crews are rushing to replace the sod at Levi's Stadium before the 49ers play their second preseason game there.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KGO) -- The scramble is on to finish laying new sod on the Levi's Stadium field after two players slipped and had minor injuries at a practice Wednesday.

At the rate the replacement process is going, the 49ers are hopeful the new sod will be in place by Friday night, but there are no guarantees. Sky7 HD found the crews painstakingly laying the thicker sod so there won't be any seams. The rolls are being compressed so they lie flat.

The 49ers continue to turn down interview requests, saying they're focused on getting the new lawn put down. They'll figure out later who or what's at fault.

Coach Jim Harbaugh accentuated the positive about having the field ready for Sunday.

"We're refitting, regrouping, retooling and a new field is going in. Once again, our organization -- we can count on them to do things at the highest level," said Harbaugh.

Wide receiver Bruce Ellington was one of two 49ers who suffered minor injuries Wednesday after slipping on the four-month old Bandera Bermuda grass. He says he's confident the playing field will be ready in two days.

"I'm very confident. They told us it'll be ready, so I'm taking their word it'll be ready," said Bruce Ellington.

Running back LaMichael James said players have to be prepared for all kinds of field conditions.

"You can slip any time. You've got to be able to play on the field when it's wet. What if it snows? You just never know. You've got to go out there and compete. It's the same field for everybody," said James.

Kicker Phil Dawson is not blaming the sod for missing two field goals last Sunday against the Broncos.

"When I miss kicks, it's easy to start blaming things on that, and I'm not going to do that. I either make the kicks, or I don't. And excited to get out there this week and see what I can do to get better," said Dawson.

The test comes Sunday if Harbaugh's prediction is right.

"I'm sure the field's going to be good and playable," said Harbaugh.