SAN FRANCISCO — Here’s the transcript of Alex Smith’s post-game press conference, courtesy of the 49ers.
How does it feel, taking care of the business in the division?
“Yeah, great. All you care about is coming out with a W. Short week, getting ready, a division game. A lot of history between these two teams. Anyway, anything to get it done, whatever it took. ”
What changed in the offense in the second half?
“Just finally got into a rhythm, I think. Mixing it, running the pass and moving the chains. Obviously, took some checks down there in the beginning of the second half. The backs getting out there, they load the box and then sprint out there and doubling on the outside and really buzz out underneath the receivers. Giving the ball to the backs was nice.”
Some of the offensive linemen said that they really want to get back into some old school, 49er football. Did you talk about that?
“Yeah, they were pumped all week, they were ready for this. They knew of the challenge ahead of them. They knew this was a team that lowered the box, and I think number one in defense against the run. I think a little chip on their shoulder all week, especially after last week. They came out and proved it tonight.”
Did the timing of Thursday Night Football come at a good time, getting the taste of Sunday out of your mouth?
“Yeah, in a sense. You play right away so you don’t have to sit around and think about it all week. For sure. These Thursday games are tough though, short notice. I feel like, division game… Luckily we didn’t travel this year. We had it at home and I think that helps. Playing a defense like that on short notice is tough. You know, the entire team played physical. Defense played lights-out, and special teams as well.”
What kind of game was it for you?
“I was expecting a physical game. It wasn’t necessarily going to be a pretty, it wasn’t going to be a stat game. It was going to be a ‘do whatever it takes.’ Turn on both of our games like last year were like this. It was going to be a run around, make you play on your feet, maybe make a scramble play. Didn’t know what it was going to take. The way they play, get those big corners up on you and try to disrupt your timing and try to get the pass rush after you. Sometimes you have to ad lib, sometimes you have to do things differently a little bit.”
Coach Harbaugh said that you had perfect game in checking out the runs, do you do a lot of that? What do you see?
“We don’t talk scheme here Matt. Yeah, I thought I did alright on that stuff, protections and everything. Felt good up there. Saw everything really well, expect for the pick. I saw [WR] Randy [Moss] in the back of the end zone there on that. For the most part I felt good with all the stuff we were doing.”
The interception, was it a run around play?
“Yeah, it was, they were dropping out their coverage call. Primary guys were not there. I was even conscious of this, I knew they play that down there. A couple teams had chances to score on similar plays like that earlier in the year. Run around and try to make a play. It’s tough running left as a right-hand quarterback, throw the ball back across your body is usually not good. You know, trying to make a play.”
What is it that [Seattle Seahawks defense] does down there?
“They were just dropping out, it’s every team you play in the red zone. You get the tail of two worlds, they either pressure you, drop out, it just depends. Protection was great and I know you could potentially make a play with you feet, move around and maybe find someone open and let someone work.”
Coach Harbaugh said he saw the same thing as you for the interception. Was it just not high enough, what happened?
“Just different levels. [WR] Randy [Moss] is running the back of the end zone [CB Brandon] Browner is occupied with either [RB] Frank [Gore] or [RB] Kendall [Hunter] in the front corner. You’re trying to look for the window and he steps into it, you’re just not seeing everything. So that’s it.”
What do you make about having scored 45 points and then last game, you’ve had a wide spectrum this season? What is the meaning?
“I feel like that’s the NFL. That’s what it is, it’s the ups and downs. You have to be able to ride them out. Really within the building, within the locker room you got to. You can’t have those ups and downs. I know you guys like ot write about them and make a big deal about it. You have to move on to the next opponent and get ready. Couple weeks ago you break records and last week, it wasn’t good at all offensively. Today, you know, we ran the ball really well. It wasn’t a pass game but we got it done.”