SANTA CLARA — Here’s what Greg Roman said at his Friday press conference about Mike Iupati.
ROMAN: “I’ll tell you who really had the best game since I’ve been here, is Mike Iupati. He had an incredible week of preparation. He was on a short week. He was the first guy answering all the questions in our review meeting the day before the game. He just played lights out. It’s really good seeing Mike coming out, playing at that consistent level – a really, really high level.
Q: What did you see from Iupati during the game that makes you say that about him?
ROMAN: “From an assignment standpoint, he was playing very fast. You can tell when a guy’s playing fast – he’s off on a count, there’s no indecision if the defense does something a little different. There’s not that moment of hesitation. He’s playing extremely fast and he’s dominating people. He’s got some physical tools that are rare. They were on display.”
Q: When you run as many trap plays as you did against the Seahawks, is it necessary for the guards to play that quickly in order for those plays to work?
ROMAN: “Without question. The trap play is the fastest-hitting run you can have other than a quarterback sneak. Those guys – he and Boone – were playing really fast.”
Q: I understand Iupati’s favorite play is power.
ROMAN: “Oh yeah, to the right. He’s pulling for the frontside linebacker spot. He loves it, he’s done it a lot and he’s gotten really, really good at it, at adjusting to all the different looks at he can see. We run it a million different ways. For mike, he’s a backside guard, so he pulls around. What we’re essentially doing is creating an extra gap on the play-side, but it involved him reading things on the run, adjusting inside or outside or trapping the end man on the line. He enjoys it. He’s an athletic, explosive guy. He’ll always be begging for power going to right.”
Q: He asks to run it in obvious passing situations?
ROMAN: “Yeah, third and 17: ‘Hey, let’s run Power. Come on, let’s run power.’ And if we run it to the left, that means he and Joe (Staley) are double-teaming somebody most of the time, and they’re the two finest in the NFL at that.”