San Francisco found no fault with linebacker
“When we grade a player, if he has a penalty, we give him a minus,” Jim Harbaugh said Monday. “We did not assign a minus on that play.
“Thought he made a great play, just didn’t get the result.”
On 3rd-and-2 with three-plus minutes remaining and the 49ers leading 23-20, Brooks swept around Saints right tackle Zach Strief from his outside linebacker position. He extended both arms around quarterback Drew Brees, striking him above the shoulder pads.
The resulting personal foul penalty extended New Orleans’ drive and changed the complexion of the game.
“Thought Ahmad hit the right level, the shoulder level and the quarterback shrunk down and that’s the official’s call to make,” Harbaugh said less than 24 hours after the fact. “I’m going to see it the way I see it.”
The coach added that he is aware his “slanted” perspective is natural given his allegiance to his own players.
“This isn’t NASCAR, where the drivers and the owners after the game or the race get up there and start throwing punches at each other and questioning every call and in everybody’s face,” Harbaugh said. “We can’t argue about it. You know I can’t stand up here and make these comments. That’s two different worlds, NASCAR and professional football. It’s not our place as coaches to talk about that.”
Harbaugh had not spoken to the NFL regarding the ruling on the play as of his noontime chat with local media.