49ers QB Coach Steve Logan to Emphasize 'Explosion Plays'

Steve Logan's approach to coaching can be summarized by one simple mantra.

"You will achieve what you emphasize."

That saying has stuck with the San Francisco 49ers new quarterbacks coach throughout his four decades in football. So when Logan says something will be a focus of his, he means it.

Speaking to reporters last Thursday after the 49ers wrapped up their nine-week offseason program, Logan revealed an aspect of San Francisco's offense that he intends to revitalize.

"Explosion plays – that's where you make a living," Logan said.

Last year, the 49ers completed just five passes of 40 yards or more, which ranked them 29th in the NFL. The team addressed that concern in free agency by signing deep-threat Torrey Smith to a five-year deal.

Now, Logan wants to ensure that franchise quarterback Colin Kaepernick utilizes Smith and the rest of San Francisco's vertical receivers, including fellow free-agent addition Jerome Simpson, to stretch opposing defenses.

"Jim Tomsula, (offensive coordinator) Geep Chryst and I love to push the ball down the field," Logan said. "And so guess what? We've got a wonderful cast of characters for Colin to work with.

"He's still getting to know Torrey Smith. What's Torrey Smith's body language? What's his speed? We're finding out he can run exactly as fast as he needs to at any given moment. So Colin is getting to know guys better…. I think as he gets more comfortable with these components, it'll be fun to watch."

As the 49ers take more shots downfield, Logan is keenly aware of a potential drawback – one he believes is well worth the trade off.

"The design of an offense has a great impact on completion percentage," Logan said. "You can take a young man, put him in an offense and really encourage him to hit the check down. Then suddenly you look up and he's completing 68 or 70 percent of his passes and that's wonderful.

"But what did you sacrifice to get that done. Well now we don't have a vertical passing game. You have to be careful with completion percentage."

Logan said he has discussed this already with Kaepernick. The coach and starting signal-caller study game tape together and discuss scenarios in which throwing the ball deep would be more advantageous. It's all about finding balance and exploiting the defense's soft spot.

"One day I was talking to Colin while watching some Arizona film. Now what does Arizona do? They pressure, pressure, pressure," Logan said. "So I said, 'Colin, in games like this, we've got to be willing to sacrifice completion percentage for explosion plays.'

"Just imagine he goes out there and completes three explosion plays to give us 21 points and comes out of the game 48 percent complete. Well, let's go have a glass of wine. I'm good to go."

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