SANTA CLARA – Jim Harbaugh was interviewed in the 49ers’ auditorium Friday afternoon. Here is a transcript.
Q: What happened to Blake Costanzo? How did he get injured?
HARBAUGH: Something with the knee.
Q: He was placed on I.R. Could he return at some point this season?
HARBAUGH: I don’t think it’s a season-ending injury, but I hate to talk and then be wrong and then get criticized for not having all of the information.
Q: You talked about the backup quarterbacking job being up in the air somewhat…
HARBAUGH: No, I didn’t really say that. I was asked that question and I said there are jobs up for grabs. My comment was speaking globally for the team.
Q: Is the backup quarterback job up for grabs?
HARBAUGH: A lot of jobs are up for grabs at this point, yeah. Nothing is set in stone. Very pleased with the job Blaine Gabbert is doing.
Q: Will there be a different order in which the quarterbacks enter the game?
HARBAUGH: No, I don’t anticipate that.
Q: Do you anticipate Colin Kaepernick playing more than he did last Thursday against the Ravens?
HARBAUGH: Possibly. It’s going to be the same plan going into this game.
Q: Gabbert’s performance against the Ravens was criticized. Is that criticism fair? What was your overall takeaway of how he played?
HARBAUGH: He made a couple very good throws. Missed a couple as we said right after the game. I think it was a good first step. He’s competing well. I thought he did that in the game and he’s continuing to do that in the process of the preseason, of the training camp. Feel good the way he’s coming along.
Q: What have you seen from Eric Reid and Antoine Bethea?
HARBAUGH: I think our safety play has been very good, has been in practice and in games. I’ll say that for Jimmie (Ward), Craig Dahl, C.J. Spillman – they’re playing very well as a group.
Q: How is Aaron Lynch doing?
HARBAUGH: I feel like he is doing a good job. Enjoy being around him, I like the way he practices and he’s continuing to learn how to be a professional football player. Taking the right steps.
Q: Has he gotten stronger since he has been here?
HARBAUGH: He’s a very strong guy. He’s continuing to work on that, getting really fit, getting in great shape. It’s coming along. He’s eating better. He’s doing the things that create really good habits and lead to being a young captain in the Marine Corps.
Q: Did you and the team encourage him to gain more mass?
HARBAUGH: Fat is the enemy of speed, so his body fat, we’re trying to bring it down.
Q: What’s the latest on Marcus Lattimore?
HARBAUGH: He’s doing well. There have been gains. That’s where we’re at now. Not quite there yet.
Q: Is it at the point where he’s most likely going to start the season on the NFI list?
HARBAUGH: I wouldn’t make any assumptions. He’s making gains every day. Reports are going well. Nothing to elaborate deeply on.
Q: Have you watched him rehab? What are your thoughts on how he’s moving?
HARBAUGH: I haven’t seen personally but I was talking about it today with Mark Uyeyama and Jeff Ferguson. I got a good report.
Q: With his new job as the tight ends’ coach, is Eric Mangini still someone you’re going to consult with on replay challenges?
HARBAUGH: Yes, and there are others but Eric is a go-to guy on replays, Vic Fangio has been very good in the past and Greg Roman as well.
Q: How tough has it been to prepare for the upcoming season without knowing exactly how much time Aldon Smith is going to miss due to suspension?
HARBAUGH: I can’t really say. We control what we can control. There are a lot of things that challenge us and we think about those first. It’s a process – we’ve said that all along. That process is transpiring. It’s in its final stages. But the process we’re looking at is Aldon. Now, this month, this year and the rest of his career and on after that. Please and proud to report that things are going extremely well. He is doing what he says he’s going to do. That’s the opportunity that we’re all hoping he would take the reins on and do a great job with. Reports so far, so good.
Q: Will you accept Pete Carroll’s challenge and dump a bucket of ice on your head for ALS awareness?
HARBAUGH: I’m very excited about that. As usual, I’m late to the internet party on that. I always seem to be behind. Not on the cutting edge, the cusp of those things happening. I heard about that. I’m not taking Pete Carroll’s challenge, though. I’ve got another challenge with him. But I know just who I’m going to challenge. I get to challenge how many people?
HARBAUGH: Three people? OK. I’m going to challenge Matt Maiocco, Eric Branch, the Cohns, Matty Barrows, Cam Inman, Bill – that’s more than three. I’ll challenge the San Francisco beat writers, how’s that? And President Barack Obama.
Q: He did it.
HARBAUGH: Has he already? Then I challenge George W. Bush.
Q: Did your brother John challenge you?
HARBAUGH: Apparently. I’m just finding this stuff out. I’m never up to speed on the trendy stuff.
Q: What’s the other challenge you have going with Pete Carroll?
HARBAUGH: I think you know what that one is. The big one.