SANTA CLARA — This is the transcript of Jim Harbaugh’s Wednesday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ P.R. department.
So, you guys activated LB NaVorro Bowman to the 53-man roster. What do you expect from him for the final three weeks of the regular season?
“The doctors and medical staff put a plan into place that would make it possible for him to play this year. This week, he wouldn’t play. Possible for the following week and, if things go well, perhaps, he can play in one of those last two ball games.”
At this point in the season, is there concern about putting him out there, and why not just say, ‘Let’s do this thing next year’? Give him several more months to really get right?
“It is something that’s really being decided, being determined based on how he feels, how his training is progressing. It’s been suggested and been talked with him about, that this is what can be in his best interests. Nobody’s going to rush him back out there. That’s not going to happen.”
NaVorro himself yesterday brought up, maybe, just asked if the leadership and how he wants to get out on the field and maybe a little bit of that’s been lacking from the players’ point of view. I know you don’t like talking about what isn’t there, but how important is a guy with leadership like that, and how much has it been missed maybe through this season?
“I think he’s been an engaged guy the entire season. He’s been a leader. He hasn’t played, but he has been a leader in the locker room.”
But can him putting on a helmet again and getting out there in practice be a real, emotional lift or morale boost for a team?
“Yeah, I think it would be. But again, there’s a subset of questions here, there’s multiple factors. What’s going to be in his best interest is going to be the deciding factor.
Is he practicing this week?
“This week, he’s still going through the lifting and the agility.”
What about some other guys, DL Glenn Dorsey and CB Tramaine Brock, any progress on them and possibly playing on Sunday?
“Glenn’s going to get back into practice today. Tramaine, I don’t think will practice today.”
How’s T Anthony Davis? Is he still experiencing symptoms from the concussion or where does he stand?
“Going through the protocol. He’s passed phases of it. He’s at a phase now, so, we’ll see how much he’s able to do today.”
Speaking of leadership, I asked you this question very early in the season about the two locker rooms, and at that time you didn’t think it was much of an issue at all. Has your stance on that change? If you had it to do over again, would you have all the players in the same locker room? Can you address that, please?
“I feel the same way that I did earlier in the season.”
That there’s enough, the leadership can – you have most of the veterans over there and it seems like a lot of the younger guys here – there’s enough interaction between the two locker rooms for the veterans to get there point across to the young guys, you believe?
“It’s a difference between a big space and a smaller space. We’re taking advantage of some really good things in this locker room from a rehab standpoint. I feel the same as I did before.”
A video came out yesterday of QB Colin Kaepernick getting into a minor confrontation in the hallway with a Raiders linebacker. Is that an issue for you? Do you need to talk to him about engaging with opponents, whether it’s there or between plays on the field or anything like that?
“I was not aware of that until today, so.”
You seem to know, talking with, having exchanges with opponents, whether it’s the Bears or the Raiders, is that problematic? Is that something that fuels him? Where do you stand on a quarterback getting in to those types of exchanges?
“Better to stay away from it.”
What kind of extra work is Colin and maybe some of the guys on offense putting in on the practice field? Are they staying late and working on throws and what guys might be helping him out?
“We’re back today. We’ve got the plan. It’s being implemented into the meetings. Feel good about that. Feel good about the opportunity to go out onto the field and practice that plan.”
Does he stay after practice, though, to work on some throws?
“He does. He does extra, yes.”
Any certain receivers that he likes to stick around with him more than others?
“This is one of those articles you’ve already got written?”
No, I’m just curious to see, knowing what guys might be trying to help him out.
“It’s all of his receivers.”
You’ve probably seen or heard the demise of the weather over the next couple of days. We get this big storm. Do adjust your practice plans now or do you want to practice in it given the weather you might end up with in Seattle?
“We’re going to address that today. We want to get a really good workout today not knowing what tomorrow is going to bring weather wise. If we get the benefit of practicing in some rain that would be beneficial as well.”
Where would you go if you held a practice indoors or had to hold a practice indoors? Is that available to you anywhere, like a hotel ballroom, that sort of thing?
“Yes. I don’t have a place, right now, in mind.”
But that could be — ?
“Yeah, it could be an option.”
Did you have a chance at all to see the new NFL player conduct policy that the owners implemented earlier today and if so, was just wondering what your reaction was to some of those changes?
“I have not seen it yet or had a chance to go through it.”
Right now, one of the things was that the league was saying that they’re not only going to rely on what, depending on certain cases if violence is involved, not only going to rely on law enforcement but would have their own independent NFL investigations. Would you feel like you could comment on that concept? That the NFL feels like it needs to have its own investigations and its own discipline separate from what the legal situation is?
“I’d like to reserve comment until I’ve had a chance to look at it.”
I would assume you went back to look at the NFC Championship game tape recently? When you look at it, what do you see? You go through the emotions of that game or are you just looking at it clinically, x and o, here’s what they did, here’s what we did?
“Clinically, that’s a good way to say it.”
What strikes you about that game? You did a lot of good things in that game. Do you emphasize that part about it or is it just a loss to you?
“No. Definitely look at the game and what it provides going forward in this game. You look at studying a lot of factors – tendencies, alignment.”
Were they similar in what they did, particularly defensively, from that game to the one when you played them a couple of weeks ago?
“Yeah, there’s some changes, but, structurally, very similar to what they’ve done.”
I seemed to remember you commenting, you were saying that was a great game. It seemed like you took some pride in being a part of that and the way the team played. Even though it ended hairy, do you look back at the NFC Championship game as a great game and something that was kind of special to be a part of?
“I still think that, yeah.”
Your team’s played up in that stadium has much as any team. Is it possible to get more comfortable playing there the more often you play there? Do you think the team feels more comfortable playing there than before having done it so often?
“I think the team will feel prepared.”
When you say, ‘We’re going forward without excuse and without apology,’ what does that mean?
“That means that neither one of those two things will be a benefit. When you’re making an apology for something, that doesn’t actually fix the issue or the problem that you’re apologizing for. And neither does an excuse.”
Do you see, numbers wise, the Seahawks defense has kind of turned it up the last two weeks? When you pop in the film of their season, do you see a noticeable difference from the Seahawks defense in Week 4 to playing them this Sunday?
“Yeah, they’re playing like a No. 1 defense in all areas.”
How do you guys generate more pressure than you were able to get the last game on Raiders QB Derek Carr? How do you get that defense pass rush going?
“Cranked up in the pass rush? It’s going to be needed. I think we have the guys to do it. Look forward to a better performance in that area.”
With TE Vance McDonald on Injured Reserve, how has TE Asante Cleveland come along? Is he somebody that could start seeing some offensive snaps?
“Yes, he could. He’s done really well. He’s excelled in the practices, that’s why he’s been elevated to the 53. I think he can have an impact.”
On the topic of Vance, he came into the league as a slot receiver, and I know a lot of people look at the number of receptions he’s had since he’s been here, but on the flip side, the blocking, how much did he improve in that area in the time that you’ve had him?
“He’s done extremely well. He was more of a tight end in college than he was a slot receiver. I wouldn’t characterize him in that way. He’s been exceptional. Improvement has been steady. We look forward to this being a bump in the road for him and back to full health.”
What is the nature of that injury?
“It’s a disc. He’s having a procedure.”
Had one or is having?
It wasn’t former Pittsburgh LB Greg Lloyd that damaged your tooth.
“Who was it?”
I don’t know, but he was out that season.
It could’ve been former Pittsburgh LB Chad Brown?
You blamed the wrong guy?
“Sometimes you forget.”
You get it fixed?
It looks good.