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Harbaugh said earlier this week he was excited to finally meet his players: “I can’t tell you how good it’s going to be having those guys in the building, face to face, knee to knee, smelling their breath, just getting to know them, let them get to know me,” he said.

With all the turnover going on across the league, the new coaches don’t think they’re at quite the disadvantage one might think.

“Something I think is important to remember is when you start a new year it’s a new football team,” Garrett said. “The dynamics are different, the chemistry is different. You have to develop those things.”

That goes for everyone.

“It was a different offseason,” Garrett said. “We didn’t have our OTAs and minicamps and we haven’t seen our players since the first week in March. So each of us has to adjust accordingly.”

Still, some are lamenting the lockout’s detrimental effect.

“You look at any team across the league, I think we’re one of the few that needs every ounce of time that we can get,” Browns quarterback Colt McCoy said. “That’s no excuse. We’re not trying to find excuses, but with a new offense, a new defense, new systems on both sides of the ball, we need time.”

Time isn’t on anybody’s side.

“That’s the way it is. There is nothing that we can do about that so we’re not going to make excuses,” Rivera said. “Those are the facts of the NFL.”

Coaches, new or not, won’t get a great feel for their teams until the veteran free agents can start practicing next Thursday, with just a few practices to spare before the preseason games begin.

“A week out on the field and a week without your whole team, it does kind of put you behind already,” 49ers wide receiver Josh Morgan said. “You’re behind already because of the lockout and the new coach. We’re not really looking for excuses. We’re looking for solutions.”

While they may not be in “football shape,” some players say they’re readier than ever for training camp.

“We’ve spent a lot of time this summer working together,” McCoy said. “We’ve done what we can do, we’ve worked hard … Now, it’s time to get a little coaching.”

Or, in some cases, a lot.

Like new teachers greeting students back to school from summer vacation, many coaches are putting faces to names right now.

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