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Offensive Player Transcripts: Jan. 28

Posted Jan 28, 2013



G Alex Boone, RB Frank Gore and FB Bruce Miller addressed the media on Monday in New Orleans.

GUARD ALEX BOONE

(on quarterback Alex Smith being a great teammate) “That could have gone sideways in a hurry, absolutely. I think a lot of people forget how great of a teammate that is. I applaud him every day for making Colin (Kaepernick) better and teaching him and still practicing as hard as he does. That’s a tough situation. I love Alex to death. He’s like a brother to me. He handled it well.”

(on why Alex Smith continued to be a good teammate after Kaepernick was named starting quarterback) “That’s not who he is. He’s not that kind of a guy. He would never want a distraction to separate this team. I think he saw where we were going and to divide that team would be a horrible thing.”

(on Jonathan Goodwin) “He’s like the dad of the offensive line. He takes care of everybody. We’re all a bunch of goof balls, and then there’s Jon, he’s so serious and calm all the time. Jon has played in so many high pressure situations that he understands what this game means. To have him out there is a big deal for us.”

(on Kaepernick’s influence on opening up the run game) “It’s been huge. You line up in that pistol and you never know which way it’s going.  Even when he’s throwing the ball, something breaks down and he takes off running. Frank (Gore) gets the ball and he’s pounding the ball. It just exploits the defense in so many different ways.”

(on if he notices that the defense plays differently with Kaepernick at quarterback) “Oh yeah. Absolutely.”

(on if it’s easier on the offensive line with Kaepernick at quarterback) “Sometimes. Sometimes not, but that’s just part of the offensive line to have fun and just get physical. A lot of it has to do with the read game. That will change up the defense and then the guys will kind of start to read us and we can come off the ball more and it just changes the game a little bit.”

(on President Barack Obama saying he wouldn’t let his son play football) “I’d let my kid play, absolutely. It’s a physical sport nonetheless. You grow up knowing it’s physical and every year it gets different. It takes a different kind of guy to play this game, I think. There are going to be injuries, and there are going to be problems. We’re looking to try to correct them.”

(on making changes to football to help make it safer) “I don’t understand how you do that. I’ve just never understood how you change the game when you’ve got guys who are getting bigger, faster, stronger every year. The technology and the equipment just has to keep going and going.”

(on if he’d be concerned letting his son play football) “No, no. Not at all. If he wants to play, he can play. He’s his own man. With little kids, you don’t have to really worry about them that much, but as you get older, you have to learn how to play the game a little better. I think the NFL is trying to do a great job with that right now trying to teach the little kids to understand. It’s just football. It’s going to be physical.”

(on if the Ravens are a trash talking team) “Most teams don’t really talk that much, but I’ve heard stories about these guys talking a lot. Guys have told me not to get into it with them. We’re not going out there to get into a yelling match. Just go out there and play football.”

(on the how physical the Ravens defense is) “I watched the game last year and just noticed how physical it was. Anytime you watch this defense, you know they’re going to be a physical defense. That’s what they’re known for. It’s going to be one of those full day suckers. You just have to be ready for it. You have to pack a lunch, and you have to know it’s going to be 60 minutes all out.”

(on if the read option offense changes the blocking technique) “Different angles. It changes in the sense that we’re known as being a power offense, so it changes that aspect of it.”

(on offensive coordinator Greg Roman’s offense being considered Old School) “Absolutely. When we call traps and stuff, I think, ‘Man, when was the last time you ran a trap? High school or something?’ You never really run them in college. I think that’s what makes G-Ro so great. He understands football to another level. He understands when things will work or when things are good and when we have to start backing off on this or start hitting this. That’s what makes him the best offensive coordinator.”

(on what makes a trap unique in the NFL) “It’s so hard to trap a guy in the NFL because they’re so much more aware in the NFL. They understand that if I’m not being blocked, somebody is going to come hit me somewhere, so you really have to know when you’re ready to run the trap. Because if you don’t, you’re just going to kill the play, and that’s not what you want. G-Ro is on top of it all the time.”

(on if he was surprised at how well Kaepernick played in his first game) “I’ll tell you this, I was a little surprised until he came in the huddle and said, ‘We’re going in right now. Let’s do this.’ I think everyone was like, ‘OK, let’s do this.’ No questions asked. He went out and had a phenomenal game and has been taking steps every week.”

(on the distractions in New Orleans) “Just staying in the hotel. Coach said it before. We’re here on a business trip. Randy (Moss) even said it. We’re here on business. We’re not here to party. We’re not here to have fun. We’re here to work, and when you’re done, you can do whatever you want.”

(on being down 17 points to Atlanta in the NFC Championship game) “We went in at halftime and everyone said, ‘OK, let’s not panic. Let’s not freak out. Let’s just be who we are, and let’s get back to football. Defense, you stop them. We’re going to go out and drive the ball.’ I think that’s the one thing about this team is we have kind of grown to have a confidence about us and everybody understands it. We can put points up. We just have to be calm. Things aren’t always going to go our way. That’s football, but the key is not freaking out on the sidelines, not getting too upset, not worrying about anything. I think this team did a great job of that.”

(on when Moss talked to the team) “Earlier this week. He made some great comments. To have a guy like that on this team is huge. He said some things that were totally right. We’re here for business. We’re not here to play. We’re not here to have fun. We’re not here to go out.”

(on if he’s surprised Kaepernick has stayed as calm as he has) “No, I’m not surprised at all. I’ve never seen that kid break a sweat. Have you? I’ve never seen him get rattled. He threw an interception the first series in the Packers game. He came over to the sideline, kind of looked down for a second and was, like ‘Alright, let’s go.’ I was like, ‘OK, if you say we’re going, we’re going.’ That’s what I love about him. He’s always so confident, so in the moment, never gets high-jacked, never out of it. That’s what makes him such a great quarterback.”

(on if he was aware of the San Francisco 49ers being 5-0 in the Super Bowl) “I am now. Thanks for that. I appreciate that. We know that we’re 5-0 in the Super Bowl. Those were those teams, and this is our team. And we’re going to try to make it 6-0 by giving it our best shot.”

(on practicing against defensive tackle Justin Smith) “An eye opener. That guy is unbelievable. That guy will rip you apart. He’ll do it again over and over. I feel like I’ve grown so much in this league by understanding football through his eyes. He tells me all the time, ‘Do this. Don’t do this. Don’t ever do this no matter what anybody says, and if they pay you don’t do it either.’ He’s a great mentor, a great friend, and getting a year under playing against him has made everything else slow down.”

(on what Smith has told him never to do) “He always says don’t ever do the same thing the whole game. Don’t ever short step anybody the entire game. Don’t ever step back on them. Everything you do has to do with changing it up. They have to be thinking just as much as you are. The less they think, the more you get affected by it, and it’s helped me tremendously.”

(on if they still have a lot of work to do this week) “We went over something. We went outside, got a nice little jog in, sweat in. For the most part, every day you’re working. You’re always trying to build on more and more and what the game plan is and what their defense is going to do. This week will be very key for us – everyone focusing in, dialing in. There are a lot of distractions out there. I think this team is up for the challenge.”


RUNNING BACK FRANK GORE

(on what he thinks about Ray Lewis) “Ray is a great player. He’s been doing it for a long time. He’s the best at the business. I love him. He’s like a brother (to me). We come from the same school.”

(on whether he knew Ray Lewis got his first NFL sack against Jim Harbaugh) “I saw it on ESPN. I didn’t know it, but I saw it.”

(on what he remembers about last year’s NFC Championship Game) “We didn’t finish. The Giants won the game. It was tough. It was real tough. I had a chance to go to the Pro Bowl and I couldn’t even go because I was so hurt. Knowing that we were the better team, but we didn’t finish. They won and they moved on.”

(on how the 49ers carried last year’s NFC Championship loss into this season) “We set our goals. Our main goal was to get the NFC West, then get the NFC and then the Super Bowl. Once we got in the Super Bowl it was different, real different. Last year we were kind of happy about beating New Orleans. This year, we beat Green Bay, but we were like, ‘Cool, let’s go get the next one.’ It’s just different. Our mindset was totally different this year than last year.”

(on what impresses him about Colin Kaepernick) “What impresses me is that he is a young guy, who started half of the season. When things go wrong he stays calm. Defenses just don’t know what they’re going to get from him. He can run, throw, block. He can do whatever.”

(on whether they are comfortable because they played in the Superdome this season) “It doesn’t matter. It could’ve been anywhere. We still have to play.”

(on the biggest difference with the team this year compared to a year ago) “This year everyone knew that we had a good team. So we knew it was going to be tough and it was tough. We knew, in the locker room, that we have to be ready every week.”

(on how muscle activation therapy has helped him) “It has helped me a lot. Sometimes, after games, it usually takes me two-to-three days to get the soreness out. I go to (a specialist). I see him that Monday and he gets my muscles reenergized. I could be feeling real good that Wednesday and ready to go by Friday. I could play the game that Friday. He’s been doing a great job with me. I’m happy that he came in my life at this stage in my career. He helped me a lot.”

(on the identity of the 49ers) “(We are) physical and tough. It’s hard to break us. We’re going to fight to the end. We have a great team.”

(on the importance of Vernon Davis) “Just being on the field, Vernon is a threat. The guy’s so fast and strong. A lot of defenses can’t do their regular stuff because they have to key in on Vernon. Just him being on the field helps us out a whole lot.”

(on how important the tight end position has become) “It’s real big. A tight end who can catch and also have speed – you can’t put a linebacker on him. You’ll have to bring a safety in or a cornerback to cover him and we can run the ball.”

(on the impact of Randy Moss) “Just being there for the younger guys and helping (Michael) Crabtree and A.J. (Jenkins) and helping Ted (Ginn, Jr.) again, just being a pro. He made big plays this year. When his number is called, he shows up. That’s all we need from him.”

(on his mother) “My mother means everything to me. She was a tough woman. She raised me and my brother and my sister. That was a lot of weight. I love her. She means everything. (This game is) for her.”

(on the difference between Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick) “Kap (Kaepernick) is probably a little bit more athletic and can run more than Alex. They both are good quarterbacks. We won with Alex. We’re winning with Kaepernick. Coach (Harbaugh) made the decision to go with Kap, that’s who we’re rolling with.”

(on whether Aldon Smith is starting to wear down from being an every down player) “No. When you watch film you see guys coming out to chip him. It’s not affecting him at all.”

(on whether it was difficult losing a lot of games at the beginning of his career) “It was real tough. It was tough coming to work. Especially for me, coming from a winning program in college. I wasn’t ever used to losing. I used to take it hard. I’m glad that Coach Harbaugh and his coaching staff came at the right time and we’ve done good things.”

(on what he remembers from previous losing seasons) “Some guys, who are not here anymore, were like ‘Whatever.’ I wasn’t used to that. If we lost a game in Miami it was like our season was over. I’m just happy with our coaching style and who we have now. It’s changed everything.”

(on the difference in attitude from a losing season to a winning season) “I love it. You can get up and walk around with your head up. Everybody loves you in the city. You want to practice. Our goal is to get here (the Super Bowl) and we’re here.”

(on whether he ever wanted out of the 49ers) “No, I didn’t. I knew what type of guys we have in the locker room. We had the Patricks (Willis). We had the Vernons (Davis). We had the Justins (Smith). I knew we had players. We just didn’t have the right people to lead us and now we do.”

(on whether he wondered if this time would ever come) “I felt as long as we stayed together (we would make it to the Super Bowl).

(on whether there is a great responsibility playing for a franchise with a rich Super Bowl history) “No, it’s not pressure at all. We’re going to do our best as a team to win. We want to win. We just have to go out there and do what we did all year, being the 49ers.”

(on the difference in the 49ers) “We do so many things now. If it’s not with me, it’s with (Michael) Crabtree. If it’s not with Crab it’s with LaMichael (James) or Vernon (Davis) or Delanie (Walker). It’s just different.”

(on is injury history) “It’s tough. My second knee injury. I thought football wasn’t for me. My coach, we sat down and talked. He really wanted me to keep working. He wanted me to get an opportunity to play in the NFL.”

(on Aldon Smith being named the team MVP) “He deserved it. Last year he had 14 sacks. This year, everyone was questioning whether he could be an every-down linebacker, and he showed it. He is one of the best at the position. He had a great year.”

(on what it means to have depth at the running back position) “It keeps me fresh. I love it. Earlier, in my career, I probably wouldn’t like it, but now, getting ready for the fourth quarter and the defense is probably wearing down and I’m fresh; and I get going.”

FULLBACK BRUCE MILLER

(on how Head Coach Jim Harbaugh inspires him to play well) “He inspires me, but other guys do it too. For guys like Frank (Gore), when you see the way they practice you don’t have a choice but to block as hard as you can for them. It’s much more of a respect thing for them.”

(on how difficult it is to play offense depending on what things Offensive Coordinator Greg Roman asks him to do) “I get to do a lot of different things because I’m not just running downhill and hitting guys; I get to block and get in different schemes. I love this offense. I think we all take pride in being intelligent football players, so the more they can give us the more we can do, so we take pride in that.”

(on whether or not he would let his son play football, if he had a son) “We’re playing football. I started really young so I’d like to get him started really young and get him going.”

(on if the reports about head collisions dissuades him from letting his son play football, if he had a son) “I think it’s actually getting better with the way trainers are dealing with it. It can only get better with the advancements in technology.”

(on how LaMichael James performed this season and what it was like to be part of the touchdown against Atlanta) “He’s been great to come in and do the things he’s done. The way he runs the football for us has been a huge lift on our offense with him being as explosive as he is.”

(on when he found out that he would no longer be a defensive player and be a fullback instead) “It was kind of up in the air for a while and we kind of flipped sides during training camp. I was playing a little bit of defense and a little bit of offense and I think they just went with whichever one they thought I fit best in, which was fullback.”

(on his description of Coach Jim Harbaugh’s personality) “He’s just a fanatic about the game. He loves football, loves coaching and loves all his players so he gives everything he has as a coach.”

(on what it feels like to come back to the same venue where he won earlier this season) “I’m excited about it. I love playing on the turf and playing in the dome, but hopefully we’ll have a few more fans this time.”

(on how Frank Gore has inspired him) “His work ethic is inspirational. When you see him in the facility, the weight room and the practice field- everyone knows he’s a good football player on Sunday- but his work ethic the other times is what we see. He pushes everyone to be a better football player.”

(on President Obama saying the game of football has gotten too violent) “It is a violent game, but not too violent. Guys are big and explosive players so the game is violent, but I don’t know about too violent. I think they are taking caution to be careful and concerned for the players safety and taking that into account more.”

(on switching to Colin Kaepernick at quarterback and if that opens things up for him) “I don’t know if it’s opened up any more than it was before. I think Colin has opened the offense up with his legs a whole lot more when we do our option plays, so that’s a switch. I think Frank runs the football the same way no matter what play.”

(on if the 49ers and the Ravens are two of the most physical teams in the league) “I think we like to think that we’re a physical team, but I guess on Sunday we will see.”

(on the way Alex Smith was able to handle his emotion) “He’s just a great team player. He’s a professional with the way he’s handled this. He’s been nothing but encouraging for our team and for Colin.”

(on whether he was nervous going into the Chicago game to see how Colin Kaepernick would play) “I don’t think I was unsure. I was more excited for him to show what he could do. I know that around our facility guys knew what he could do and had confidence in knowing he could make plays for us, which is what he showed them.”

(on what Colin Kaepernick is like outside of the game as well as during the game) “He’s definitely more reserved off the field. I actually lived with Colin for a little bit and he’s very to himself, but when he gets in between the lines he definitely gets fired up. He’s a fiery leader for our football team.”

(on how he made the switch from defense to offense) “I think the main difference is guys are a little bit closer. They’re two to three yards away from each other, and it’s different when you have to run eight to 10 yards to make contact with somebody. I’m still learning and working.”

(on how exciting it is for Colin Kaepernick to develop into a player that people are paying attention to) “I’m happy for him that he’s been able to show his talents. In practice you are able to see his physical talents that he has but it’s great for him to just to go out and show that in the Super Bowl.”

(on the winning culture Coach Jim Harbaugh has brought) “From day one, he just coaches football and expects his players to come out and practice and lift weights every day. He expects us to prepare during the week, and guys take those things seriously, which is why I think we’re sitting here now.”

(on how he feels about his position as a fullback being an endangered species in the league) “I think the fullback position in our offense is very important and I’m not even the only one that plays it on our team. We do a lot in the position because a lot of guys move around.”

(on how important the 49ers history is and what kind of legacy they are able to leave this year) “It’s huge and you get the feeling when you’re walking around in the city and fans come up to you and they’re so excited. They want us to bring this winning tradition back to San Francisco. It’s exciting, and we want to do that for them.”

(on if this game is more special by playing against someone like Ray Lewis) “Yeah, he and a lot of their guys are high class defenders in the NFL who have played for a long time. Last time we played them I actually didn’t get to play in the game because I was out, so this is the first time I get to play the Ravens and I’m excited.”

(on how strict curfew will be since they are in New Orleans so close to Bourbon Street) “We have curfew put in place every night this week starting tonight.”

(on his favorite Super Bowl memory) “I am a big Falcons fan so watching them play the Broncos was pretty cool. Also, the one with the Rams and Titans was great, but this will definitely be the best one.”

(on how it feels to finally be at the Super Bowl) “It is so special because it’s such a long season where you put in so much work. When you finally get to the post-season you never know what is going to happen. To make it through the games and to this point, it is finally starting to sink in. When we practiced last week at the facility we were even still shocked coming off the win in Atlanta, so it’s really starting to set in that we are at the Super Bowl.”


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