SANTA CLARA — This is the transcript of Colin Kaepernick’s Wednesday interview, courtesy of the 49ers’ P.R. department.
T Joe Staley just discussed how the whole kind of offensive line kind of takes that game personally and needs to improve in every phase. What’s sort of the response you’ve seen from the O-line in the last day or two?
Do you see anything in film that is any comparison to the last game before the bye that you guys need to improve on?
“We just have to go out and play better.”
Do you feel the team is at a crossroads right now? You’re 4-4, things haven’t been going great, but sometimes they have been. What’s the state of this team right now?
“That we have to go out and win. That’s where we’re at.”
What went wrong on that last snap in the game? Was it a bad exchange? Overall, what were the exchanges like between you and a new center on Sunday?
“Last one was my fault, but [C] Marcus [Martin] did a great job. Didn’t have a problem with the snaps all day.”
Head coach Jim Harbaugh just said that it’s important for this team to play focused and loose. How do you keep the offense loose in the huddle? What are some of the things you do so the team doesn’t press maybe when things aren’t?
“It’s not necessarily what you worry about when you’re in the huddle. It’s your preparation that allows you to go out and play loose.”
RB Marcus Lattimore announced that he’s retiring. How disappointed are you to see his career not get off the way that he wanted it to after all the hard work?
“I was looking forward to seeing him on the field, see what he could do.”
Does that resonate with you guys just know that a career can be over like that and would that be a rallying cry for maybe going forward?
“It’s something that I think everyone’s aware of. It’s the business we’re in.”
What do you see as your biggest challenges with the Saints defense?
“They do a lot of things. They do them well. They play hard.”
Specifically, when you say they do a lot of things, what concerns you about–?
“We specifically don’t talk about scheme.”
Going up against Saints QB Drew Brees, what do you see what he brings to the table? He seems like another hall-of-fame quarterback. What do you see?
“Yeah, he is. He’s been playing well and at a very high level for a very long time and that’s something offensively we have to be aware of because we’re going to have to put up points to win this game.”
Is there anything you can learn from him or you feel like you’ve learned from him?
“We actually run similar offenses, so that’s something we look at in the offseason to see what he’s doing and how he’s going through some things.”
When you say you have to play better, what areas of that would you focus on more going into Sunday?
What was coach Harbaugh’s message yesterday when you guys reconvened?
“That we have to win.”
When you have a game like last Sunday and you’re watching video of that, is it something that makes you want to watch more to know what you did wrong or do you just want to watch less of it and put it behind you?
“You watch the whole game. You watch it to make sure you correct what was wrong.”
Did you watch last Sunday more or less than usual?
“Same as always.”
Are you guys using RB Frank Gore enough?
“It’s not a question you can really answer. It’s going to be determined week-to-week.”
I have a really cool stat for you. You’re on pace to be throw for 3,900 yards, 24 touchdowns and rush for 500 yards. No quarterback in NFL history has done that. There’s talk that you haven’t played well enough or all that, but do you feel like you’re having a pretty decent season?
“I feel like we’re having an average season. We’re 4-4, that’s the only stat that matters.”
Having said that, at 4-4, what is the character, the identity of this team?
“We’re a hard-working team. Same as we’ve always been. We just have to finish games.”
Can you be a physical team that passes the ball more than you run it? Can you be a physical passing team? Is that a thing?
“Yeah, I think we have the players to do it, but it’s really going to be dictated by the scheme that week and what we feel like we can take advantage of.”
What do the Saints do so well to protect their home field and the run they’re on in the Superdome?
“They’ve been playing good football. Been playing good defensively, making plays offensively. Been playing winning football.”
But what makes them tough at home?
“They’re a good football team. They’re going to be tough anywhere. Playing in the dome is always a little harder.”
In your guys’ four losses, the offense has scored just one touchdown in the second half. Can you put your finger on why you guys haven’t been able to finish off some of those games better?
“No, can’t put our finger on it. We just have to go out and execute better.”