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Singletary's Notebook: Aug. 13



Opening Statement:**
"Good morning. Obviously, you guys were reading the statement about Glen Coffee. Glen informed us this morning of his intent to no longer play the game of football. I respect that, I appreciate everything that he's done for the 49ers and whatever the issues are, I'm not going to go into all of the other stuff. You will have to talk to Glen about that. But, I appreciate his honesty and I appreciate him not coming out here and going through the motions. The thing that we're trying to do with the 49ers, we're trying to find 53 men that love the game of football and that's going to help us get where we need to go. So as far as Glen Coffee is concerned, I think that Trent Baalke and the personnel staff will look around, see what's out there, see what's available, and go from there. Other than that I have no further information and you'll have to talk to him if you need anything else."

On whether the announcement came out of the blue:
"Yes it did."

On Coffee's performance in camp:
"He was having a fine camp, he did. He was having a fine camp."

On whether he tried to convince Coffee to stay:"No, no. You can't. The one thing I learned a long time ago is that if someone wants to leave and you try to bring them back, talk them out of it, chances are you are going to have to try and talk them out of it again. That would be disrespectful to the guys out here. We have guys out here that really want to be here and I'm looking high and low to try and find those 53 that really love being here. And that's what the game is all about. So, that's where I'm at."

On whether he had a sense of this in the past:
"I did not."

On his initial reaction:"My initial reaction was, 'Glen, are you sure about this?' He said, yes sir, I've given it a lot of thought, and I said okay. If that's where you are, then I respect that and I appreciate your honesty. I appreciate the character that you have to come and let us know so that we can move forward and not put us in a situation where we have to go scramble and do something that we didn't want to do."

On whether he understood Coffee's reasons:"No."

On when the conversation happened:
"This morning."

On whether the conversation was face-to-face:
"Yes sir."

On what Coffee's reasons are:
"Sir, I think I just said I don't want to go into all the other stuff. I have no idea, other than all the things I just told you, I have no idea. I didn't want to go into a conversation about why. I'm not going to do that. He is a man, and the last thing that I'm going to do is disrespect him and try to drag something out. He made a decision and all I asked him was if he was sure, if he had thought about the decision. He said yes, I have thought about it for a long time. That's when I said, well you know what, I appreciate the honesty, I appreciate the thought process, and the character that you have to come and tell me."

On whether Coffee showed up to practice on Thursday:
"No sir."

On the team reaction to his absence:
"We did what any organization would try and do – find out if everything is okay, you try to find him, and I think maybe sometime last night we were able to find him."

On Coffee's demeanor this morning:
"I just thought that I know he felt bad. His demeanor was, I really hate to do this, I really hate to lay this on you coach. I love my teammates and I love what we're doing, but since college, my heart hasn't been in it. Matter of fact, I came out early because my heart wasn't in it. And so it's just one of those things, and knowing Glen Coffee, he really felt awful, and I'm thinking that he was thinking that I was really going to be upset with him, and that was not the case."

On his offseason and camp progress and whether Coffee was doing all things necessary to be a good football player:
"Well yes, but that doesn't matter. I think right now, yes, all the questions that you guys asked, did it surprise you, yes. Did you think he was having a good camp, yes. He's the guy that's what you want, an incredible young man. But, he has made that decision and that's his decision."

On whether Coffee was healthy:"Oh yeah. Absolutely."

*On RB Anthony Dixon's role now that Coffee has left:   *"He's going to step into the same role. He and Coffee were competing to see who that backup guy was going to be. And right now, it really forces Dixon to grow up really quick. It's one of those things where he is going to take more snaps; he's going to get more of the workload. He's really going to have to step it up in terms of his learning progression and his learning of things. He's going to have to grow up real quick."

On whether RB Michael Robinson is the number two guy in terms of depth:
"I would say right now we are just going to go through this process and see what we come up with in the personnel department and just go forward with that and let things continue to work themselves out."

On whether the roster spot opens up immediately:
"Well to me, Dixon just steps into that spot. In terms of what we do with Glen Coffee's spot, I think that we really have to look at what's available. We really have to look at what's there and I'm not going to say anything else about the roster spot. We'll just have to see what happens."

On the player's reaction to this announcement:"The players, we had our best practice of training camp yesterday. Today the guys are excited. We are ready to go play football. I'm excited about the opportunity that Anthony Dixon has. Am I a little sad about the fact that Coffee is not here? Yes I am, and the reason why, more of his character than as a football player. He's an exceptional young man and I hold him in very high regard. I really appreciate that it must have been a very difficult decision for him. So, I think more about him than I think about our team. I'd love to have him on our team but at the same time I really do want 53 guys that really want to be here and want to contribute to a championship team."

On whether Coffee knows what he wants to do with his life:
"I have no idea."

On how close Dixon is to being ready to play consistently in the NFL:
"He's a ways away. He's got a lot of work to do in every area. From just being able to hit the hole, knowing when to dance a little bit, knowing when to hit at full speed, knowing when to make a cut, knowing exactly where that guard is going to – how close that guard is going to be off the center- and how quickly he has to make a decision, how much time he has to hit a hole, the protections. That's a whole other world for a young guy, the protections. You really begin to look at the quarterback situation and think, right now, you really have to be careful about his progression in terms of Anthony Dixon, what he knows and what he doesn't know. So, it's just going to be one of those things where we really have to pour a lot into him right now and hopefully he can handle it. But thankfully, it's early."

On potentially transitioning FB Jehuu Caulcrick to a running back:
"He's a fullback right now and I think he's working real hard to be a good fullback, and I think we're going to leave it there."

On where the situation with DT Kentwan Balmer stands:
"Same: It hasn't changed. It hasn't changed."

On whether they have discussed how long QB Alex Smith and the potential starters will play against Indianapolis: 
"No, we have to think about it. We have to talk about it, evaluate the week and once again talk to our trainers and doctors and look at the health side of it as well. So, those are just things that we still have to talk about."

On whether Blamer has indicated he wants to come back:
"If Balmer wanted to be back, he'd be back."

On whether Coffee leaving affects RB Frank Gore's playing time for Sunday:
"It doesn't affect it, not one way, not one iota. No."

On whether WR Michael Crabtree will be down on Sunday:
"It's possible."     

On when they will decide who is playing on Sunday:
"It's a preseason game. We have up until game time to make that decision so we're going to take our time, look at our guys and we'll make our decision then."

On whether this has been a distraction to the players or to him:
"No. It's my job. I was telling someone just a little while ago that this has been one of the best weeks that we've had, and the reason why is because we have adversity. When you have to deal with adversity it allows you to focus. You have to focus. It would be very easy to go through the entire offseason and go through training camp without facing any adversity at all, and go into the season and you have one setback and think, 'Oh my goodness, how are we going to deal with that?' We can deal with anything. We're dealing with this in stride and continuing to have our best practice. The guys are continuing to be enthusiastic about what they are thinking about, they're focused. I think our guys understand, we're going to have some adversity and when we do, the most important thing is how we deal with it. We respond, and we move forward."

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