Donte Whitner emerged as a leader of the 49ers secondary in 2011 during his first season in San Francisco. A man who takes pride in his mental side of the game, Whitner has also established himself as one of the league's hardest-hitting safeties throughout his career. The veteran recently spoke with 49ers.com about breaking the training camp setup as well as the team's development through two preseason games.**
It's always like the last day of school when you break camp. You get the opportunity to get out of the hotel, some teams get out of the dorm room, but no matter what, it's great when you go back to your own home.
Even though we were in camp and away from home for a while, I would still go to my house periodically. I would stop through to let the cleaning ladies in. I keep my place stocked with a lot of liquids and snacks and things, too.
I am not a big cooker, but I live near a lot of restaurants. Most of the time I go out to eat dinner around where I live. The only thing I keep in my refrigerator is a lot of liquids. There is really no issue stocking those things. The only challenge is just throwing away the old fruits, vegetables and frozen foods. Other than that I was able to transition smoothly.
Coming off the last preseason game against the Texans as a unit we gave up a few plays, but as a whole I think we played pretty good. Houston is arguably one of the top offenses in the National Football League. When you play a team like them with a lot of misdirection, bootlegs, naked throwback screens and throwback deep posts, it's always tough.
I felt we held our own and did a good job getting off the field on third down. The only thing I wish we would have done better is we could have picked up a couple of turnovers. Those will come as we continue to play more and more. Hopefully we get a few this week.
The Texans game was our first road trip this season and the flights are a camaraderie builder. Guys just went to battle together, so after the game you have guys on there that are tired and sore. It's pretty cool because we get on there and eat a lot of snacks and do a lot of talking. You hang out with the guys on the way back, but the majority of the time guys sleep, listen to their own music or watch movies.
I listened to music on this trip. I like the new Rick Ross album as well as Frank Ocean's new album. Diced Pineapples is one of my favorite songs on the new Rick Ross record. I listen to both of those artists before games and on the flights back home.
I am actually looking to download more music onto my iPod right now. I have a lot of music on it already, I just haven't created my gameday playlist yet. Hopefully the fans can drop me a line on Twitter @DonteWhitner for new music right now. I listen to all types of music, so I will go look up anything the fans give me. My favorite radio station right now is 99.7. They play pop music, rock and alternative. I'm into that type of music right now.
The next preseason game in Denver against a team led by Peyton Manning is going to be a fun test especially when you have a guy who is one of the best, if not the best, quarterback to ever play in the NFL. He knows where to go with the football. We have to be on our P's and Q's as far as disguise and as far as not allowing him to move us to see what we are in.
It is important that we work on being sound in our details and our technique. We need to understand we are facing a good quarterback. We are going to face a lot of good quarterbacks this season. Guys like Aaron Rodgers, Mathew Stafford and Drew Brees to name a few. It is going to be a line of quarterbacks and we get to start with this one.
I can't wait. We get to go out there, test our defense and test our knowledge against one of the best. It will be a task. It will be fun, but at the same time it's going to be a test.