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Singletary's Notebook: Oct. 25



On his thoughts about playing in London:**"I think it's great. For us, it's a nice chance to kind of get away, regroup and rethink. I think it came at a good time."

On whether he's worried about the travel right after the game having an impact on the players:"No, not at all. I think the fact that we came over right after the game, the guys will have a chance this week to kind of get caught up, relax a bit and get used to the environment. I think it will be a plus for us."

On the NFL having teams playing internationally and whether it is a bonus to the league or a disruption to the schedule:"It depends on the way you look at it. I think for us, it really works to be a bonus for us. I think it really gives us a chance to kind of get away from the hustle and bustle of the NFL. To come over here and think through some things, look at maybe some changes you need to make, it gives you a chance to slow down the pace a bit. Like I said, the environment here is a great environment for us."

On whether QB Alex Smith will play this weekend:"As of right now, we have to get the X-Rays and see what the doctors are thinking at that time and get a feel for it."

On what his chances are:"I'm not a doctor, so we'll have to wait and see."

On whether Smith is at the doctor right now:"No."

On having lost close games and what needs to be done to overcome those close losses:"We're going to figure it out this week. It's important for us to continue to try and put the pieces in place that give us the chance to get over the edge. You hate to be at this particular time trying to figure it out, but we are in the first half of the season still, so we still have a chance to have a good season and accomplish some of the goals that we wanted to accomplish at the beginning of the season. On one hand, you look at close games and you say you're not that far away. On the other hand, you look at the record and it's just not very exciting right now. So, you're at that place where we have to get over that edge, we have to get over that hump, to get where we need to be. I think this week gives us a great opportunity to take a step back, smell the roses a bit and put the pieces in place that we need to put in place to get there."

On whether it is a mental thing to win close games:"I think for us, we're still maturing. I want our guys to mature faster. I want us to get there yesterday. I feel that this week will be a pivotal week for us. I'm excited to see how we respond on Sunday to some of the changes we'll make this week to try and get better."

On what he expects this Sunday at Wembley Stadium:"Excitement. I think football is a great game. We're playing in a great atmosphere and hopefully they really get into it. So, it should be very exciting."

On what went wrong against the Panthers:"Too many big plays. We weren't detailed enough in our coverages. We had some mix-ups on the offensive line. A few guys got hurt, so the continuity wasn't there. I guess to sum it up, too many mistakes to overcome."

On whether it is an advantage financially for the NFL to play games internationally:"I'm not sure, in terms of the financial gain one way or the other. I think more than anything, it's the exposure. I think the NFL is a tremendous game. I think having a game here really gives the NFL a lot of exposure. I think it gives the people here – it's a two-way street, the fans here have a chance to see the game. In what you call 'futbol,' I think there are some similarities. The fans could get very excited about it and want more of it. We're hoping that is the case." 

On the feeling of having a franchise in London:"It would depend on the team. That would be really interesting. It could be a good thing. It could be dependent on if the team is young. It depends on if it's a mature team, if it's a young team. I think if you had a mature team here, it could possibly work, and work to their advantage. I'm not trying to sell you on it, but I do believe it would have to be a veteran team, it couldn't be a young team." 

On thinking back to his playing days, and whether this could be a disruption to play internationally:"As a player, I didn't really care. I didn't care where we played. We showed up, let's play. We can play in the street, play in the park, I didn't really care. It really didn't matter to me."

On whether the players are embracing the scenery and atmosphere:"I think so. I think coaches and players alike. This has really come at a great time for us. I think we're going to take full advantage of it and get the things done that we need to get done to get on track Sunday, and head into the bye week and get ready for the rest of the season."

On the decision to travel to London early in the week rather than at the end of the week:"I always believe that we want to give the guys a chance to get acclimated. If you're going to come for just a couple of days – we know it's a business trip and we know that we're coming here to win a football game, but at the same time, we have a younger football team. I wanted our guys to be able to come and get a taste of the culture, and at the same time, get a feel for the environment. The weather and the whole nine yards, and just be settled by the time the game starts. I think it was a great decision." 

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