What They Said: 49ers, Vikings Break Down 49ers NFC Divisional Round Victory

The San Francisco 49ers are heading to the NFC Championship game following a 27-10 victory over the Minnesota Vikings. Here's what both locker rooms said following the Divisional Round matchup.

Niners Liners

Kyle Shanahan on what he liked about this style of victory:

"The way we did it. That was our goal. That was our goal that we said on Monday, right when we found out. We really believed the team that got over 30 runs would win. We thought only one team would and that was a complete team goal. The offense would not have been able to get that many runs if the defense didn't play like they did and if the special teams didn't play that way also."

Shanahan on setting the tone on the team's first offensive drive:

"You'd like to say that's always the most important drive until it doesn't work, then the next one is. It's huge. We didn't play all last week. You're at your home crowd and you want to come out and be like that. You could hear the fans just in pregame warmups. The stadium was electric. It was different than it's been. When our defense holds them, I want to say it was three-and-out to start. We get in there, are able to go down and get seven. It's a great feeling. They came back and answered with that go route, which tied it up. Felt pretty good throughout the first half. We made a pretty bad mistake with that turnover at the end of the second quarter. It was great that our defense held them to three points, which allowed us to recover the rest of the game."

Shanahan on Tevin Coleman's performance:

"He looked good out there today. Tevin, I know his numbers haven't been as great. Raheem has had some real good runs. I think Tevin has had some unfortunate looks, just the luck of the draw a little bit. I think he got some better looks today, took advantage of them. When you do that, I think it got him in a little bit of momentum. He was able to stay out there a little bit longer. I think he got some extra carries at the end, didn't have to split them as much with Raheem cramping and stuff. That's why we haven't changed much. We've been excited about Tevin all year. Glad he got his opportunities today. He came through big for us."

QB Jimmy Garoppolo on Richard Sherman's interception:

"That was huge. I didn't actually get to see it. He made the play. It's that complementary football, I've said it before up here. That one, coming off the special teams one with (RB) Raheem (Mostert) when he got that one, too. When all those things are tied together, all three units are playing together like that, it makes us tough to beat."

Garoppolo on the opening drive setting the tone:

"Yeah, I think we ran the ball well, too, on that drive. I think guys were talking on the sidelines that we had opportunities to run it. (Head coach) Kyle (Shanahan) did a great job of getting us into the right calls and everything. Guys up front did the rest. The running backs ran hard. All those guys, even the receivers. It takes all the guys offensively to run the ball. We did a good job of it today."

Garoppolo on his block of Anthony Barr:

"Yeah, it felt good. Just sometimes you have to remember that you're not just a quarterback, you're a football player, too, sometimes. Yeah, just tried to do my job on it."

DL Arik Armstead on turning the Vikings offense one-dimensional:

"Yes, start by stopping the run first. (Minnesota Vikings RB) Dalvin (Cook) has been moving the ball. The run game opens up everything else. It definitely started with that. We did a good job with that and got after the passer."

DL Dee Ford on getting back on the field:

"It felt great. Good to be out with my teammates and out of that training room."

T Joe Staley on the offense running the ball 47 times:

"Getting 47 carries, that is pretty rare. You don't get too many games when you are going to be running the ball 47 times. To run the ball 47 times is a complete team effort. Our defense has to do what they did today which is to stop their offense. We have to have a lot of opportunities, we have to be able to average and to keep it efficient on first and second downs, and move the chains on third down. I think it was a total team effort running the ball. Coming in that is what we wanted to do. They are really talented up front. We saw what they did by putting pressure on (New Orleans Saints QB) Drew (Brees) the week before, so we came in with the mindset we are going to need to run the ball. We were able to do that."

LB Kwon Alexander on the atmosphere at Levi's® Stadium:

"The Faithful are crazy. The fans, I love them. They were out there. They were supporting us. We had to go out there and do our job for them and we got the job done."

Alexander on how they were successful in stopping Dalvin Cook:

"We were able to be us. Once we do that, we can go out there and have fun and when we play together as a team it's hard to beat us. That is all we have to do and we are going to go far."

DL Nick Bosa on his performance in his first-career playoff game:

"I felt pretty normal. I knew getting (DL) Dee (Ford) back and getting (LB) Kwon (Alexander), (S Jaquiski) Tartt, just having them on the field, it's a completely different energy. It's the energy we had early in the year. It's really fun playing on a really good team, just knowing that every person around you is going to do their job really well. Makes it a lot easier for me."

Bosa on having Ford back on the field:

"I told Dee, 'I wish I could scare people with my presence like you do.' I mean, when a guard sees Dee Ford on them, their mind is racing, they're thinking about what he's about to do, whatever it is. Just having his presence and his pass-rush ability, his knowledge and communication, he's a true vet. It's nice to have him out there."

WR Kendrick Bourne on the importance of Garoppolo spreading the ball around:

"It was definitely important, just taking what the defense gives you. I think that he sees that pretty well. He was definitely putting everything on the money today. I had two drops that I definitely should have caught. He was doing a good job of putting it where it needed to be at the right time."

Bourne on his touchdown:

"It was just a good look. (49ers head coach) Kyle (Shanahan) planned it. We were going over it through the week. Just seeing the same look throughout the week for me and that same look came when he called it so the corner used the outside leverage, when you have leverage it should be a good play. So it worked out for the best. I just had to execute on my end which, I did and Jimmy reading me through the second or third window. Whatever that safety did, I don't know, he bit on the run so the window was pretty big. Good job by Jimmy being poised and getting it where needed to be."

DL DeForest Buckner on the impact Ford made on Saturday:

"Dee's speed off the edge is one of a kind. It really opens up more opportunity for the guys in the inside, also for (DL) Nick (Bosa) on the opposite side. They can't pick and choose every time on where they want to slide the protection or who they want to double. They have to change it up. It's very challenging when you have four guys that can rush the passer."

TE George Kittle on what this win says about the 49ers:

"We played good football today. We've been playing good football all year. We keep putting good football on tape. People keep telling us we're not very good. We're just going to keep playing good football, I guess."

Kittle on the 49ers defensive performance against the Vikings:

"Our defense? Pretty good, right? Holy cow. I mean, it's such a blast just to watch them, how they work together. Doesn't matter highs, lows, they ride with them. I think (CB Richard) Sherman does a great job of keeping them even-keeled. Then you kind of just let them off the leash. You have (DL Nick) Bosa, (DL) Dee Ford. We had guys rushing the passer from all angles. It's kind of tough to be a quarterback, I guess."

CB Richard Sherman on his interception:

"Yeah, we were in man. It was third down. He gave me an inside release. Gave me a little bit too much at the top of the route. I knew what the route was. I beat him to the spot. (Minnesota Vikings QB) Kirk (Cousins) threw a very catchable ball, appreciate it, and I was able to make the play."

Sherman on how it felt to have Alexander, Ford and Tartt back on the field:

"Felt good. It felt good. That's what we look like when we're totally healthy. Those guys make a huge difference in our defense. They played fast, they recognize things. Having veteran presence, they understand how teams are trying to attack us. They understand what they're seeing. They play fast. The moment is not too big for them. Dee obviously makes a huge impact on third down and passing situations. So, we're thankful to have them all back. Tartt does a great job of recognizing things, being in the right spot. He made a huge difference. All three of them made a huge difference in this game."

Sherman on making it to the NFC Championship game:

"This team deserves it. I'm going to take this off of me. That was selfish of me anyway. But this team deserves it. (QB) Jimmy Garoppolo played a fantastic game on offense. (Head coach) Kyle Shanahan deserves it. He's a heck of a coach. (Defensive coordinator) Robert Saleh deserves it. (Special teams coordinator Richard) Hightower deserves it. All our position coaches. Our D-line. Team deserves it. We work week in and week out. We try to put our best on the line. We don't always get the results we want, but this team is a team, it's a family."

LB Fred Warner on how effective the 49ers pass rush was against the Vikings:

"Man, I feel like I didn't even have to play a game honestly. We ran a lot of man coverage on third down, let the big boys up front go eat. I'd be in man coverage, hear cheering. 'Wait, we just started.' They did outstanding up front. It was a huge team win all around. Obviously, you could see what getting some key pieces back can do for our defense. Honestly, I felt like we could have done better today."

Warner on how the 49ers contained Cook:

"Yeah, we did all right. I think every week we want to come out and we want to stop the run. I mean, that was of course a big emphasis this week with how successful they've been in the run of recent or throughout the season, honestly. We took care of business in that phase, were able to get after the quarterback."

Vikings Quotes

Head coach Mike Zimmer on the 49ers defense:

"They played very well. I thought they got off blocks well. I thought they did a nice job on both."

Zimmer on the lack of the deep throws against the 49ers:

"I think that we had some called and we didn't throw them. Just, we threw the one to (Minnesota Vikings WR) Stefon Diggs and a couple others throughout course so they could win it, and for whatever reason they didn't get down there."

Zimmer on the 49ers pass rush causing issues for Kirk Cousins:

"It's a pretty good rush, so that's probably why. It doesn't matter who, they didn't have, they didn't need to blitz much. They've got good pressure with four guys. Pressure affects quarterbacks typically. I don't think it had anything to do with the four-man rush, or three-man rush or an eight-man rush."

QB Kirk Cousins on the loss to the 49ers:

"The 49ers I felt were the better team today. We didn't do enough offensively to give ourselves a chance to win the game. It hurts right now. (Vikings head coach Mike) Zimmer said he was proud of the way the team fought this year, but right now it's just so raw. We're just kind of focused on this game and falling short. I thought the 49ers were a good team. They earned the number one seed and home field advantage throughout the way they played this season."

Cousins on the 49ers defense:

"We knew what we would be facing. We knew they were the number one seed with a Bye and home field advantage. You earn that, and you're a good team. You can look at a lot of their statistical numbers on defense. They've proven that they're a good front, a good defense and a good team.

"I felt like they did a good job on the bootlegs and stopped the run. We didn't convert third downs. We just needed to hit a few more third down conversions down the field."

RB Dalvin Cook on why it was so hard to get the run game going against the 49ers:

"They came out ready to play. They have good players too. They played a good game. They just came out ready to play."

Cook on the Vikings biggest obstacle against the 49ers:

"We were just not really able to get in a rhythm, so they were able to sit back and do what they do. We just never got a rhythm and they were just able to fly around and make plays."

TE Irv Smith Jr. on the 49ers defense:

"They played a lot of different personnel. They moved guys around the field. They did a good job of stopping us today. They played a great game."

DT Jaleel Johnson on the 49ers success with the ground game:

"We were beating ourselves. We just weren't getting to the ball and once we got there, we had too many missed tackles as a group."

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