Colin Kaepernick: “We still have an opportunity to do some good things and build on for next year.”

 

This is the transcript of Colin Kaepernick’s Week-12 Tuesday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ P.R. department.

Looking ahead to next week, did you guys talk about the trip, staying over in Orlando? Is everyone kind of on board that that was a good thing to do?

“We haven’t really talked about it. From my understanding that’s the game plan and this team’s going to do whatever’s best for it.”

 

Do you like that idea? Do you think it’s something that can be beneficial?

“It saves travel time, so in that regard it can be beneficial. It will give you an opportunity to really focus on what we need to get done.”

 

What about sort of team unity? Did you guys feel that when you stayed over in Youngstown a couple years did you feel like you got closer as a team just from the experience?

“Well, it gets you kind of back into a training camp mentality where you’re in a hotel together kind of isolated and it’s just the team. So, there’s the opportunity for us to get closer, but I think we already have a very tight knit team.”

 

When you stepped in you guys went to the NFC Championship game, Super Bowl, NFC Championship game. How difficult is it for you now with six games left in the season to know that the playoffs aren’t out there and what keeps you motivated?

“We still have an opportunity to win games. That’s what we have to stay focused on and take it one week at a time. There is that feeling out there that we’re not going to be in the playoffs, but we still have an opportunity to do some good things and build on for next year.”

 

How much is this losing streak weighing on you? For the team it’s nine games, for you it’s five as a starter. How are you dealing with that?

“Once again, you have to take it one week at a time and stay focused. Ultimately, we have to be the ones that change the outcome of these games and change the path that we’re on. So, we have to stay focused on that task and not let what’s happened in the past effect that.”

 

Are you just picking apart the film more than ever trying to figure out what went wrong in each loss?

“Yeah, I think everybody is working hard to make sure we’re correcting everything we can to go out and get wins. Every position, every player is trying to knit pick what they’re doing to make sure we’re getting better each week to give us an opportunity to win.”

 

You just said building for next year. Obviously, there’s a lot of stuff that has to happen, but is that door open for you to come back next year?

“Yeah, I’m under a two year deal right now. So, my plan right now is I’m focused on this team.”

 

But, you can opt out. Is that something that you’ll cross that bridge when you get to it?

“Yeah. Right now my focus is on the Miami Dolphins and helping this team win.”

 

You’ve been with TE Vance McDonald since he got here. How have you seen him develop into a weapon on this team?

“He’s someone that really has developed. He came in, from the time he came in until now he’s really grown. He’s picked up a lot of things as far as techniques, ways to win on routes, has been a great run blocker and has really developed as a pass-catcher route-runner, which I think shows on the field and the big plays that he’s had for this team.”

 

Do you think his speed is something that is rare for a tight end his size?

“It is. He’s very talented, his speed, his strength, his ability to go get the football are things that separate him as a tight end.”

 

Is he as fast as former 49ers and current Washington Redskins TE Vernon Davis?

“Not as fast as Vernon. Vernon had a different level of speed, but he definitely has speed that is very hard to match on the defensive side.”

 

You had the chance to rollout your website, show where your donations are going. I know you had mentioned that you wanted to be sure that was going to the right place. How difficult was that process to vet everything before you did that?

“Yeah, it’s something we’re being very particular with, the organizations we’re donating to, making sure they’re very grassroots. And also wanted to be very transparent with what we’re doing and where the money was going to within those organizations so people can really see that this money is going towards those communities and trying to help people.”

 

Is it just relegated to the communities that you have ties to or are you open to donating anywhere across this country?

“No. I’m open to donating anywhere across this country. There’s a lot of communities that are affected by issues of oppression and we want to make sure we try to help and touch as many communities as we can.”

 

Milwaukee, that’s kind of a place that’s near and dear to you. Is that part of the thinking there, to include those charities in your first couple months?

“Yeah. I wanted to make sure I touched Milwaukee and the Bay Area first being those are two places close to home for me. But, also being able to reach places like Chicago, New York, Texas, where these issues have really been rampant.”

 

Will you do any fundraising?

“Haven’t done any fundraising at this point. Might be an option moving forward.”

 

You said this team is really tight knit. I think a lot of us would agree with that. What makes that the case with a 1-9 team? You see a lot of other teams around the league that would get torn apart. Can you give us some examples maybe of why this is a close team?

“Well, I think we realized that the people in this locker room are the ones that are going to change the outcomes of these games and change the course that we’re on and it’s going to take all of us. It’s going to take a collective effort and I think that’s what this team’s focus is and what helps keep this team together.”

 

Has head coach Chip Kelly also contributed to that effort? What has he done to make sure you guys are staying together?

“Yeah. He definitely brings that culture where it’s going to take everybody and he talks about that and makes sure that everybody’s on the same page, staying focused on the same things as far as going out, trying to correct what we can to make sure we go out and get wins in the future.”

 

What kind of Thanksgiving plans you got?

“No plans right now.”

 

What are you thankful for?

“Thankful to be alive. Thankful for my woman, my family, people I love.”

 

Broad question, but statistically you’re doing better this year than you were a year ago. What areas do you think that you’ve gotten better at from year to year?

“That is a broad question.”

 

I was wondering if you kind of felt there was one area that you really kind of have improved upon?

“I think it’s something that there’s a lot of things that play into that. Whether it’s the offense, the play that’s called, the defense you’re going against. So, you really try to be a well-rounded player. For me, that’s something I try to stay focused on, being able to balance staying in the pocket, my ability to run and utilizing both of those when necessary.”

 

Are you making a conscious effort to stay in the pocket longer this year than maybe you would have back in 2012, 2013?

“I wouldn’t say it’s more of a conscious effort. It’s really depending on what the play is, what the defense is doing, different situations.”

 

Does this coaching staff encourage you to do whatever you want, whenever you feel the need to run, you can do it?

“I wouldn’t say whatever I want. But, there’s opportunities within the system we have where there’s opportunities to run, there’s opportunities to take shots downfield and a lot of that is dictated by the play call and what the defense is doing.”

  1. I’ve noticed there’s a lot of fellow Italians in here. How about we share our favorite dish? Mine is an old favorite from my dad. Grilled pork chops with hot and sweet cherry peppers and a fried egg on top….

        1. My Mom’s Lasanga the best anyone will ever eat in there lives. Can’t find it this good in Italy and that’s a fact!

    1. Not Italian, but my favorite pseudo Italian food restaurant in SF is La Ciccia. They serve authentic Sardinian food. Definitely worth a try if you’re in the City.

    2. My Grandmother-In-Law (now sadly deceased) made the best gnocchi. Consistency and texture was unbelievable. Now every time I’m at a restaurant with gnocchi on the menu I have to try it, see if it compares in any way. After dozens of gnocchi attempts, they are all either too tiny and hard or too big and fluffy, or squishy or some other in-between mess. She took that recipe to her grave.

  2. This should be the 49ers’ defensive backfield:

    LCB: Rashard Robinson
    RCB: Dontae Johnson
    FS: Jimmie Ward
    SS: Jaquiski Tartt

        1. Robinson has only looked good against no-name WRs, and Baalke appears to have drafted Johnson to listlessly flap in the breeze. I agree the secondary needs to be tweaked, but nothing worthwhile will come from doing so now.

            1. I agree on Brock, but Ward is only in his first season as a true CB, so saying his best position is at safety is a little rash.

              1. He’s good enough to play a lot of positions. Not knocking him. But I believe his best position is free safety. Allows him to keep his eyes on the play and use his instincts, which are very good.

              2. Ok, that I cannot argue with. However, I am still not sold on Robinson. Looking good against WRs low on a depth chart is one thing; looking good against the upper tier of WRs is another matter entirely. The team needs to find a CB and safety in the off season.

              3. I don’t disagree on Robinson. I’d just rather watch Johnson play the rest of the season than Brock.

              4. Same here, but no one seems to want to give him a chance, which is puzzling since he has not really laid an egg when he has been asked to step up.

              5. How can any of you legitimately judge our secondary when we have the worst pass rush in the NFL. We have one guy who pressures ths QB and that’s Buckner. Armstead was the other until his injury. Everyone else is garbage! I don’t care if you have P Peterson if he has our pass rush he gets shredded.. Robinson needs to put on weight no Sh*t he is 21 years old. He has played very well considering. Ward is a soild player. Redmond is the wild card. He gets healthy he could be special. Our secondary is the least of our problems. Replace Bethea with Tartt and get a legit pass rush and guys perform.

              6. How can any of you legitimately judge our secondary when we have the worst pass rush in the NFL.

                That is very easy to answer: by watching someone in the secondary get schooled or bowled over in one-on-one situations.

              7. A secondary is only as good as your front 7.. Ours is pathetic to put it nicely. I believe it was Robinson that was rated very highly until his injury. Our corners Robinson, Ward are only scratching the surface. This is not a position they should focus on the off season. I believe most of you guys were kicking the door down for Sean Smith all off season long. That has worked out real well for the Raiders. Build the front 7 the correct way and you will see guys that are much more talented players then your C Rodgers, T Browns of the world who performed real well when our front 7 was the best.

              8. A secondary is only as good as your front 7.. Ours is pathetic to put it nicely.

                The front seven has nothing to do with a DB in an situation where he is one-on-one. They help, but if the ball is able to still be thrown, then it is up to the secondary to do their job.

                I believe it was Robinson that was rated very highly until his injury.

                Robinson faced no-name WRs, so he should have had a high rating. However, he was smoked when he faced one of the better WRs in the league in Evans.

                I believe most of you guys were kicking the door down for Sean Smith all off season long.

                Yeah, I was not one of them.

                Build the front 7 the correct way and you will see guys that are much more talented players then your C Rodgers, T Browns of the world who performed real well when our front 7 was the best.

                Funny, I recall hearing complaints about the secondary when the front seven WAS one of the best in the league.

              9. So Robinson gets beat up by Mike Evans and that’s your complaint? Mike Evans destroys all corners. Especially one that has no pass rush to help him out. Secondary is least of this team worries. QB, Wr, LBS, DT are more pressing needs.

              10. Mike Evans destroyed RR. He put a hand to the face and pushed him to the ground, like a 165 lb lightweight.

              11. So Robinson gets beat up by Mike Evans and that’s your complaint?

                If that is all you paid attention to in my posts, then you purposefully, and with a biased reason, missed the point of my posts.

              12. Robinson has been very impressive for a rookie when he’s played, bar one game. Saying he has only faced ‘no-name’ WRs other than Evans is being pretty unfair. He’s a rookie. Most rookies should get picked apart by one of the best WRs in the NFL. The fact he not only held his own but actually got the better of most NFL calibre receivers he’s faced should be considered a very promising thing, not something to be dismissed.

                RAW, Sean Smith has worked out very well for the Raiders bar his first game of the season. I’m pretty sure they are very happy with that investment. He and Amerson provide one of the best CB duos in the NFL right now.

              13. “The front seven has nothing to do with a DB in an situation where he is one-on-one. They help, but if the ball is able to still be thrown, then it is up to the secondary to do their job.”

                Sure, this is true to a point, but a good front 7 that puts pressure on a QB gives the QB less time to place the ball and wait for the perfect time to throw it. Its no coincidence the best CBs in the NFL are the ones that typically play in teams that get pressure on the QB. Any CB will be made to look worse than they are when the QB has plenty of time.

      1. Robinson is also too light and injury-prone to play against the stronger and better WRs, as evidenced when Evans schooled him like he did in college.

    1. I still don’t understand why Johnson doesn’t get more playing time. Whenever he does play he looks pretty good. I actually think he may be a better safety than CB. He showed last year when he replaced Tartt that he can be quite effective playing down near the LOS.

      1. We’ve both been wondering why they neglect DJ for the past couple seasons now. Cant figure it out either but they just don’t seem to have a lot of confidence in the guy.,

      2. I agree Scooter. Whenever Johnson has been asked to step up, he has done so with generally good results. So why is he not given more chances? That has always baffled me.

      3. Because Johnson is one of the players Baalke picked when Gamble was in Philly and it’s not in Kelly’s interest to play those players unless he has to.

        1. Not following. Wouldn’t your premise apply to all of the 14 picks? How do you explain Ward, Hyde, Lynch, Reaser, Ellington (who would have played had he not been injured).

        2. That would explain it, except for the fact that Johnson has been limited in playing time since the day he was drafted.

    2. Grant

      I agree…I believe that both Johnson and Robinson will gain from playing against top-flight receivers from other teams rather than 2’s and 3’s…who on the niners are they going to practice against to be able to defend a top-flight WR ?

  3. http://usafootball.com/nationalconference/schedule

    From 8:15 to 9:00 am on Sunday, January 29, 2017 at this USA Football 2017 National Conference during the Pro Bowl Week, they will be discussing, “Starting an NFL FLAG league.”

    Hmmmmm….

    Sounds a lot like my AIR-NFL idea from last week which most of you said wouldn’t work….

    I guess USA Football read my article and liked the idea….

    Hmmmmm…

      1. USA Football is the national governing body for amateur American football in the United States. It is an independent non-profit based in Indianapolis, Indiana. USA Football hosts more than 100 training events annually and offers education programs for coaches and game officials, as well as skill development for young players and resources for youth league administrators. The organization awards more than $1,000,000 in equipment grants to youth leagues and high schools each year based on merit and need along with additional resources. USA Football also offers up to $500,000 in subsidies for volunteer youth coach background checks.
        USA Football was endowed by the National Football League and the National Football League Players Association in 2002. As the designated U.S. representative to the International Federation of American Football (IFAF), USA Football assembles U.S. national teams for international competitions conducted by the IFAF. Except for its national team program, USA Football does not operate leagues or individual teams.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USA_Football

        1. Did they not teach you to avoid using Wikipedia when citing something to support your evidence? 😋

        2. >>The USA Football National Conference is the largest annual gathering of high school and youth football stakeholders in the United States..

          Pop Warner and HS level ballers. They can totally influence what the NFL does or doesn’t do.

          1. They started heads up football which the NFL promotes endlessly. And they received an endowment from the league and the player’s union.

            1. >>They started heads up football which the NFL promotes endlessly

              Yes, promotes for young players.

              I’m not seeing how a group for amateur players is going to influence what a professional group does with it’s players.

  4. Millions of dollars flow through that organization, so I know they can afford an editor to clean up the transcription typos. Unless they want Kap to look stupid. “Knit pick”? Really?

    1. I have to think the Bowman situation is done in SF. 2 major injuries in less than 4 years, that’s tough to come back from. Might be time for Bo to hang them up. Why even come back to a team in a major rebuild?

      1. It is sad to say, but I agree with this. At best I think Bowman will be a two down ILB from here on out. The team needs to get an ILB from free agency and the draft.

        1. I am saddened as well as he was a true warrior. Its also no coincidence the defense went south as soon as he went down. He was not only the best player but also their emotional leader. You take that away and you get a vanilla defense.

          What scares me is that his injury, Reids, Armstead’s might save O’Neil his job and ultimately Baalkes.

            1. This injury is not as worse as the first one. The first one I was so scared that he would never play again, remember Crabtree in 2013 when he tore his Achilles? He came back in 6 months.

              1. He looks pretty good the past 2 years? Yeah but your missing the fact Crabtree came back that same year after 5 or 6 months Bowman will come back after 11 months that’s a big difference.

              2. Not to mention Crabtree is one year older then Bowman. Also Bowmans injury occurred early in the season not in minicamps like Crabtree BIG difference.

        2. Bowman is not going anywhere. Just signed an extension recently. I agree we need to draft an ILB high. Unless they can sign a Kiko Alonzo in free agency to pair with Bow. Resign Armstrong for depth. He can play while Bow recovers. Maybe a vet like Timmons would be a good addition.

              1. Did Willis ever sound like he considered walking away before he announced his retirement?

              2. You are comparing two different situations. Willis retired out of no where true. He also has a chronic toe problem. Bow is going through a different injury then what he experienced before. Plus he also signed an extension right before his injury. Meaning he had no intention of calling it a career before this injury. I guess this Achilles injury could cause him to reconsider. I doubt it though.

              3. Willis said in his retirement news conference that his toe and foot was bothering him for years before he retired.

              4. You are comparing two different situations.

                No I’m not. You based your argument on Bowman not seeming like he was going to walk, and I pointed out that Willis did not seem he was going to walk away either. The bottom line is you cannot predict when a player will decide to call it a career. However, it is a fact that repeated injuries can sap a player’s ability to perform at a high level.

              5. The bottom line is you cannot predict when a player will decide to call it a career?

                Exactly you can’t either end of story.

              1. I could care less about what you think you can make since you have failed to consider every angle but your own.

              2. It’s simple Crabtree came back the same year to play, Bowman will have almost a year to come back that’s the only point I was really trying to make.

        1. Yards per attempt and less Ints kind of surprising. I would of thought in the beginning of the year that Blaine would be safer with the ball. Not the case.

        2. Scoring less points per game and fewer first downs is an upgrade?

          Even the yards per game is close, the Saints game being a big outlier.

          It’s been basically the same result.

          1. Points per game can also be affected by a defensive TD. I believe Reid took one to the house in the Panthers game which affected Gabbert points per game. As far as first downs that’s irrelevant when comparing stats. Running game was working better(healthier Hyde) during Blaines starts. I mean that first game of the year was all Hyde. The defense played well obviously. I’m not saying there is a big difference but Kaep has been better IMO.

            1. The 49ers defense has not scored a TD this season.

              Comparing first downs isn’t irrelevant.

              It helps show what’s happening.

              With Kaepernick in there they are getting a few more chunk plays, but those aren’t producing better results where it matters.

          2. Jack

            It really doesn’t matter…it is proven that neither of these QB imitations can carry their own weight…..Cut or trade them both, and raid two Practice squad QBs from two other teams and play out the season searching for next years draft prognostications for a diamond in the rough…with ACL’s intact

            Happy Thanksgiving everyone….

          3. Funny thats the exact same thing that happened when we switch from Alex to Colin. No change. 3 different QB’s, 3 different head coaches but the result is still the same; mediocrity at best. What the only thing that hasn’t changed between those coaches and QB’s that has a direct connection to the quality of the product on the field?

            Ah screw it, let’s just keep blaming the head coach. It’s so much easier.

      1. The problem is youre asking the refs to think about what is ticky tacky and what isnt, its too subjective. What one refs calls another mightnot.

    1. Just reduce the play clock. Force teams to pop up and run back to the huddle to quickly call the play and get back up to the line. The game is more exciting when teams run a hurry up offense, if the league was in a constant near-hurry up offense I’m sure it would not only shorten the game but add to the liveliness.

      1. C4C

        Not a ghost of a chance..! Where would all of that advertisement money come from How would all of those ‘fat boys’ live through ’til half time ? I would rather go along with Scooters idea, and throw in more instant replay from the booth….the Ref’s think that THEY are the game….

    1. Thanks for the link Mid. So Kap says his shirt wasn’t about Castro but then has nice things to say about him. Kap is an idiot or a communist or an idiotic pinko.

      Does Kap know he would have been thrown in prison if he protested in Cuba? Kap was asked about Castro’s history of breaking up families. So what was Kap’s answer? He didn’t give one, he changed the subject.

      Kap, get a clue AZZWIPE! See if Ozzie Guillen needs a pitcher next year.

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