SANTA CLARA –
Aldon Smith, Adam Snyder, and Scott McKillop just spoke to the media, and here are selected quotes from those interviews.
Practice starts at 2:30 and the players will wear pads for the first time this training camp. Jim Harbaugh will speak to the media after. If you have a question you’d like me to ask him, feel free to leave it in the comment section or send it to me on twitter.
Q: The first two days of practices, what’s been the biggest transition for you?
ALDON SMITH: Playing linebacker, standing up. I’m not playing defensive end.
Q: Do you feel comfortable with that?
ALDON SMITH: Every day I play I’m getting more comfortable with it.
Q: Are you going to play and end or tackle on third downs?
ALDON SMITH: On Nickel I’ll be playing end.
Q: In practice the last couple days you lined up with the second team, is it a personal challenge to get with the ones as quick as possible?
ALDON SMITH: Most definitely. I’m trying to move up every practice and get better.
Q: Have you been switching sides?
ALDON SMITH: I’ve been on the right side.
Q: Will you strictly be on the right side?
ALDON SMITH: As of right now I’m on the right side but they’re interchangeable.
Q: How has the snapping been going?
SNYDER: Right now we’re trying different techniques, trying to get what works for both of us (him and Kaepernick). It’s a process. It’s going pretty well, it being the third day. We’re putting in a new offense, and me playing a new position, there’s going to be a little bit of hesitance with the center-quarterback exchange. We’re trying to speed it up, slow it down, get the right tempo. We’re working through it and it’s going well so far.
Q: It looks like you made a good adjustment from day 1 to day 2.
SNYDER: Yeah, even from day 2 to yesterday, just the morning practice to the afternoon it was getting better. That’s all I can hope for is that it keeps getting better and better. I think it’s going well right now. I think this new offense we’re installing is good for us and we’re excited about the opportunity we have this season.
Q: And Colin Kaepernick hasn’t done a lot of being under center.
SNYDER: He’s been doing great. He and I are taking a lot of snaps every day, doing it before practice, after practice. Trying to get that rhythm down, and that’s probably what you see when the ball’s fumbled – we’re out of rhythm. That’s what we’re working on. It’s the third day of camp. It’s getting better and that’s all we can hope for.
Q: Have you been told you’re the center?
SNYDER: No, right now I’m doing what they ask me to do. We haven’t really discussed where it’s going to go from here. I’ve played all the positions now. I’m prepared to do whatever they ask me to do. If that’s playing tackle, guard, or center, I’m prepared to do it.
Q: How do you think your skill-set translates to center?
SNYDER: It’s going pretty well. Better than I thought. I have a newfound respect for those guys that play center, it’s a lot. You’re the center of the offensive line, you’re coordinating everybody together. There’s a lot to do, a lot to handle. I think it’s going well so far, I think we’re getting our communication down. It’s a new offense and a new terminology for all of us.
Q: What did you do in the offseason to prepare?
SNYDER: I think the biggest thing that happened this offseason was that I maintained a lower weight and learned to work with it. I feel like I’m quicker and maybe that will help. But really it’s all the same thing. I have to block somebody.
Q: What’s Harbaugh emphasizing differently than some guys in the past?
SNYDER: The offensive tempo and that kind of stuff is something we’re trying to pick up. Looking at last year, our offense can get things done quicker.
Q: Justin Smith said a couple days ago is that the thing he noticed as a veteran in practice is that everything you guys were doing seems to have a specific purpose and you can see the reason for everything. Do you see that?
SNYDER: Yeah, definitely. Even in the meeting rooms he’s keeping us on our toes. We’re moving quickly, and that’s even from meeting to meeting, from meetings to practice, he’s got a purpose for everything. I think we can see that in the locker room, and that’s a positive sign.
Q: Do you see yourself in the competition for the starting Ted linebacker job?
McKILLOP: Definitely. Coach Vic says that right now it’s not how you start it’s how you finish. You’ve got to get better each day. I help Navarro get better, he helps me get better. The best man plays and helps this team win.
Q: What are your impressions of Aldon Smith?
McKILLOP: He’s very impressive. I didn’t realize how athletic he is. I’m eager to see him today. It’s different when you’re in helmets running around then when you put pads on and see if you can do the exact same thing you’ve been doing the last couple days. I know there’s bunch of other players, including myself, who are very excited for this practice.
Q: What’s up with your hair and beard situation?
McKILLOP: I’m not cutting the hair, and I’m going to see how long the beard can grow. There’s a couple people I look up to in terms of their beards – Brian Wilson, Brett Keisel – amazing beards that I think a lot of people should look up to in terms of facial hair.
Q: Will it stay the same color?
McKILLOP: I don’t know. You don’t want to do something similar to what he’s done, you’ve got to create your own appearance.
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