Essentially, you are asking for a Star Trek hero to explain that he has the ability to stop an attacker by using this clever invention called phaser, or the ability to tell what species the attacker is by using this device known as tricorder, or the ability to reach a planetary surface using a transporter or a shuttlecraft. No such explanations should ever be necessary. And failing to waste everybody's time with them is not "secrecy".
Wasting everybody's time, you say? Let me try to rewrite the scene to fix that.
Yar: The ship is just 30 seconds away from coming into range of our Tractor beam range sir.
Picard: Do you detect anything on that vessel that may cause problems with the beam?
Tasha: None that I can detect. But If there are problems, I'm certain I can disable their ship with a phaser burst Captain.
Picard: Very well. Stand by tractor beam.
There. I just made everyone sound competent, in control and ahead of their game. Picard wants to tractor the ship as soon as possible, Yar is prepared just incase the beam doesn't work, and Picard trusts her combat abilities enough should the situation become require aggressive measures.
A good Captain should always fill his crew in on things even if they are obvious. If they were simply throwing trash away, maybe there could be room for Picard to act this way, but this is a planetary crises. You should have the crew alerted and aware of every option available to them, especially the ones who clearly don't think of it.