Kyle Shanahan just gave his Sunday conference call, and I will post the full transcript shortly. In the meantime, here’s the question I asked, followed by his response. What’s your take on what he said?
ME: “Kyle, we’ve seen Brian Hoyer throw a lot of deep passes in training camp. Why haven’t we seen him throw one in either preseason game? Don’t you want to develop a relationship between the quarterback and a wide receiver for the deep ball at game speed before the regular season starts?”
SHANAHAN: “Uh, yeah. Practice speed is, I mean, our guys, they run full speed every time they run a route, so whether they do that in a game or on air or in practice, they’re always running as fast as they can unless it’s walk through. So I don’t really look at it that way. You have certain ways to attack coverages. We had a number of deep balls called yesterday — it just depends what coverages they’re playing. When we had a couple deep balls called to attack versus quarters, they played single safety. That’s why Louis Murphy had a big explosive (play) underneath it. But, we’re not trying to show everything possible either in a preseason game.”
Here’s my take on the first part of Shanahan’s answer, when he said practice speed and game speed are the same. That simply isn’t true. Practice speed is just that – practice speed. The juice flows at a higher rate in a game than during any practice regardless of whom the player is. Jerry Rice practiced at full speed, and then on game day he kicked it into another gear.