Roman: “Frank churning out those yards for us is very important to our success.”

SANTA CLARA – Greg Roman spoke in the media tent Thursday afternoon. Here’s a transcript.

ROMAN: Afternoon, we’ve got a playoff team coming in here in the Colts, very well-coached, very good defense. Just day-to-day here in terms of getting ready. Thursday is more of a situational day for us and that’s what we’ve just been working on this morning. Any questions?

Q: How big of a priority is it to get the running game going this week?

ROMAN: Every game is different. It can change during the course of a game. We can go back over the last couple years and see where the run was emphasized more one week or maybe we went into the game saying, “Hey, we’re going to run it,” and then we changed gears during the game. I think we have a good plan getting put together, coaches working hard on it, players working hard on it. We’ll see how it goes.

Q: Is this one of those games where you say, “Hey, we’re going to run it.”?

ROMAN: I don’t think we’ll ever just say that. Our guys take a lot of pride in running the football. I think it’s part and parcel of what we do. There is a time though where do you really want to bang your heard into a brick wall as they say if they have one or two more guys than you have etcetera. So those are the decisions you have to make.

Q: Do you see defenses playing you guys differently in the run game?

ROMAN: I think so. I do. They can play whatever they want. I’d say we’ve seen a little of that and that’s not really that new. If they overplay it, I don’t know that we’re going to just bang our head into a brick wall all day. We want to give our players a chance to be successful.

Q: Specifically with the read-option, do you see the adjustments that were made in the offseason with every defense kind of devoting a lot of attention to defending that?

ROMAN: I definitely think you’re seeing some of that. We definitely haven’t placed a big emphasis on the read-option to this point in the season but that could change.

Q: How do you think the offensive line has blocked in the running game so far this season?

ROMAN: I think they’ve done a fine job. There certainly are plays we’d like to have back. I’m sure they feel that way but our big emphasis was, from Day 1, that we want to ascend this year starting with where we left training camp. We want to get better every week. I really believe our guys are in that mindset that we’re going to get better every week. The production and execution thus far has not been where we want it to be but it never is. We’re just trying to improve each and every week. I think we’re very fortunate to have the offensive line we have.

Q: On Kaepernick’s first interception in the end zone last week he said he wasn’t expecting the defender to be there. Was he told that that play was going to be wide open?

ROMAN: I don’t know if I’d get into specifics on that but at the time the guy fell off and made a play and the ball ricocheted up. I don’t know that we specifically said that.

Q: Did Kaepernick make the right read, though?

ROMAN: On that play?

Q: Yes.

ROMAN: A lot of different things could have happened on that play. That wasn’t the primary read but it unfolded the way it did and we’ll move on.

Q: Kendall Hunter only got one touch Sunday. Are you comfortable with where he is health-wise and is the plan to gradually work him back in?

ROMAN: Kendall is getting better and better every week. Again, each game could unfold differently. This week we’ll see what happens. He’s working hard. Really like how he looks and I’m sure he’ll have a great game this week.

Q: He’s gotten very little playing time last week. Why is that?

ROMAN: It was just the way the game unfolded. Every week it’s different. Kendall Hunter is definitely a guy we want involved in the game.

Q: When Kaepernick scrambles what are his instructions as far as protecting himself?

ROMAN: There are a couple different things on how to approach a defender taking you head on if you’re on the sideline. It’s really common sense-ish but there are some perameters we talk to him about and Jim talks to him about. I think he’s got pretty good instincts there.

Q: You’re happy with what he’s done on those scrambles…

ROMAN: As far as protecting himself? Yeah. There are a couple different ways he can do it. He can slide. He can go shoulder first. But he’s got a real good sense on how to end the play so to speak. We really trust those instincts.

Q: Shoulder first? I’m assuming non-throwing shoulder first.

ROMAN: Yeah, I shouldn’t say shoulder first. I should say forward, on your chest.

Q: For so long it’s been the way Gore goes the team goes. Are you thinking, “We’ve got to get Frank going because that’s who we are.”?

ROMAN: We definitely want to get Frank Gore going. Frank Gore is one of the best backs in the league and one of our leaders. In the first game of the season I really don’t think we were going to run it a whole lot. We just felt like it would be a little bit more advantageous for us to throw it and that’s how it unfolded. Frank Gore is going to be a big part of what we do this year. Frank churning out those yards for us is very important to our success.

Q: Do you and Kaepernick talk between every series?

ROMAN: Just about. Yeah, just about. Not every series. We don’t try to smother the quarterback during the game, none of us. But year, when something needs to be communicated we speak.

Q: Delanie Walker was a huge part of the offense last year and the year before. Has it been a difficult adjustment in the running game without him there?

ROMAN: Delanie had a great career here. Vance and Garrett have stepped into that role and are doing a very good job, very pleased with where they’re at and they’ve got to continue to improve.

Q: Do you expect Vernon Davis to play on Sunday?

ROMAN: I certainly hope so. I don’t know what kind of blood he has going through his body but it heals really well.

Q: Jim Tomsula worked with Greg Manusky when he was here. Have you talked to him this week just to get a better sense of what it’s like to be facing him?

ROMAN: Coach Manusky does a great job. Jim Tomsula and I have spoken really over the course of time through the offseason this summer to try to get some insight on what they do. I think they’re doing a very good job.

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  1. …by hook or by crook…
    a must-win game.
    This is your season.
    Defensive battle. Offensive shoot-out.
    What does Mister Harbaw call it?
    … a football fight, hmm?

      1. A loss would be very problematic especially considering they have to turn around and play a Thursday night game in St. Louis.

      2. Not really Grant. It is when a loss becomes a string of losses that it is problematic. It will however be a big test for this team.

      3. If you were told you could win only 1 of the next 2 games, which would you choose?

        I’d ignore whoever said that and and go out of my way to win both games.

      4. This is pretty close to must win because that Rams game on a short week is going to be tough and starting 1-3 would send shockwaves through the team I’m sure.

        To answer Jacks question, I’d rather win the game against the Rams. I’ll always place a division game above everything else.

      5. Jack if the 9ers could only win one of the next two i would pick the Indy game lets give the home fans a chance to cheer. With the price of tickets i hope for my fellow 9er fans we go 8-0 at home.

      6. Every game is technically a must-win Rocket but it doesn’t the team in dire straits if they lose. The only two times that a win dooms the team is when they are jockeying for a wildcard position and in the playoffs.

    1. Unless you’re talking about the Redskins, Steelers, Giants, Panthers, Vikings, or Bucs (not even going to include the Jags or Browns on this list), nobody is in a must win situation in week 3.

      1. 49ergirl with Seattle’s D being as good as they are and the unfair noise level at home, the 9ers are pretty close to a must win situation if they want to win the div. They can lose the next 2 and still make the playoffs but if Seattle gets home field advantage in the playoffs i do’nt see anyone beating them up there. As long as Seattles D is very good and the NFL ignores the unfair advatage they have at home i believe Seattle will be next to unbeatable at home.

      2. Coach,

        I see what you’re saying, but it’s a whole lot of what-if’s.

        Personally, I don’t think Seattle is that good outside of their home field – they aren’t a very good road team and will lose their fair share of games. They have several games on their home schedule that will be “easy” wins for them (Jags/Bucs/Vikings/Titans) and we should be thankful they aren’t the away games. They have to travel to Indy, Texas, NYG, Atl, SF, StL and my bet is that they’ll be lucky to come away from those with a 1-5 record.

        Their toughest home games are the divisional games and NO (who really aren’t that good of a road team either).

        And for the record – I don’t see the Niners losing many more games this year. @NO will be tough as will the away divisional games. The rest of the schedule brings the stiff competition to Candlestick, and our home field has a pretty good advantage, too! I still say the Niners take the division and any playoff game between us and Sea will be in our backyard.

      3. Personally, Seattle is just better than the 49ers right now. Physically, mentally and schematically. If this team had to play them in say 2 weeks at home?…..I would not bet on the 49ers to win the game, unless I was given at least 4 points.

      4. Maybe you should watch more games then Razor. Seattle isn’t a good team. They struggled offensively in both games.
        5 turnovers is how they got that score so high. Otherwise, it was going to be another 12 point outing. Any team with more than 1 receiver will match up fine against Seattle no matter where the game is played.
        Russell Wilson hasn’t looked sharp in two games now. When an offensive powerhouse matches up with Seattle, I think then you’ll be able to see what the rest of us are seeing.

      5. I respectfully disagree. Seattle’s homefield advantage leaves their opponents with an inability to communicate and adjust at the line on both sides of the ball. It’s paralyzing. The opposing O-Line does not have a snap count advantage, and even the best players lose their leverage. The ability to make adjustments is a HUGE part of today’s game.

        When Seattle is on the road, and the home team is able to make those adjustments, Seattle’s players and schemes aren’t near as effective. The 49ers, on the other hand, have been proven to be very effective on the road (except in Seattle..).

        I’m not trying to say Seattle isn’t a good team, I just don’t think they’re as good as they’re hyped to be after a big win in their home stadium. Put this game in a neutral location and I’d take the Niners any day and give you those 4 pts.

      6. Matt,

        That’s an interesting take. You are correct that the Seahawks offense is struggling a bit right now, but their defense is playing lights out, and that has carried them so far, and as long as they keep holding teams to 7 points or less the offensive struggles won’t matter too much.

        No reason to take a shot at Razor, unless he took one at you.

      7. I watched the game. Excuses are like @ssholes, they all stink. I smelled them after last years debacle as well. I won’t use them. This team got beat down, beat up and flat out coached in Sunday evenings contest. They are in no condition to play them again in 2 weeks. They do not have the physical prowess or the offensive creativity to escort them to the wood shed like they were in Seattle, whether it be in San Francisco or Egypt…

      8. After getting embarrassed twice in a row in Seattle and barely winning at home last year, I agree with razor – Seattle are the better team at the moment, at least in the head-to-head matchup. The reason is pretty simple. The Seahawks defense owns the 49ers offense.

        I still think the 49ers match up against the rest of the NFL better than the Seahawks though. I can’t think of any other defense that can take away all facets of the 49ers offense like the Seahawks can. And the 49ers are a tougher road team than the Seahawks generally.

      9. This. My preseason prediction had us starting out 1-3 and finishing 11-5. I figured it would take some time for our offense to gel. Especially wrt our WRs, an area that w/o Crabtree was looking uncertain. Grant’s knee jerk sky is falling reactions make me awfully grateful he’s not our coach. We’re going to get better.

      10. Razor,

        A 29-3 loss is a 29-3 loss, but not all 29-3 losses are created equal.

        I never like the 49ers to be beaten, let alone waxed like they were by Seattle, but this particular beating doesn’t bother me as much as others.

        The 49ers played in the most difficult NFL stadium, by far, they played one of the best home teams in the NFL, they gave Seattle five TOs, they committed penalties at inopportune times and as a result, got hammered.

        Not good, but I’d be feeling a whole lot worse if Seattle had won 29-3, while racking up a bunch of yards and stymieing the 49ers on defense, all without any TOs or big penalties. Do you see the difference?

        The list in the third paragraph are not excuses, they are reasons. The 49ers are responsible for all of it. They were on the field. Cataloging reasons for a shortcoming is not making excuses, it is a process called critical thinking.

        An excuse is when you asking to be absolved for a shortcoming that is yours to bear.

        That’s not what I’m reading on here.

      11. I understand Mr. Exgolfer. My eyewitness account reads as follows:

        The She-Hawks took the five turnovers.
        The She-Hawks forced the mental mistakes/penalties.
        31 teams have a chance to play at the Invincible Palace. It just so happens the 49ers get to do it every year and are advertised as a stud in the west. The game there last year should have left them salivating for payback with an imaginative gameplan designed with their noise pollution in mind. Keep in mind they had all offseason to formulate it. One things for sure, it wasn’t Dom Capers defense keeping Roman out late at BJ’s Saloon.
        Lastly, it bothers me a lot when a hated arch rival defiles my favorite team, breaks my starting DTs’ ankle and leaves a handful of walking wounded in the aftermath. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and the burning image of Carrolls’ ear to ear grin after the game spoke to me, “Nyah-nyah nyah-nyah-nyah”!

      12. Razor,

        Of course the Seahawks had something to do with those turnovers, but not everything to do with them. IMO, none of the TOs were forced by the Seahawks. The Seahawks put pressure on CK that may have encouraged the three INTs, but CK didn’t have to throw those INTs, just because he was under pressure. Same thing with the fumbles.

        That’s how I looked at things when I played and coached basketball, what we could’ve done better and prevailed, rather than how the other team dominated us. When you do the former you have the power, when you do the latter, you give up the power.

        Either way, I’d love to see someone punch Pete Carroll in the face.

      13. I didn’t mean it as a shot at Razor at all. I watched the Carolina game and I watched the 49ers game. Both games Russell looked pathetic. That’s all I was pointing out. The Seattle defense can take away 1 receiver. If a team has more than 1 quality WR, then they can overcome that defense. That’s all I was saying. Certainly not calling anyone out or taking any shots.

  2. I hope that Davis and Reid are back to 100% by Sunday. I also hope that Roman gets Hunter more involved in the game plan as well.
    Overall I think that it is going to be a great game.

    1. Agreed, those 3 should be key for this game. Reid seems to be ahead of the curve, I really hope he gets to stay on the field and continue his ascent.
      I think we can attack Indy’s LB with our TE’s and stretch plays with Hunter. I’d really like to see some bunch formations with Davis and Boldin blocking for KW on quick screen\smoke routes.

  3. Does anyone else dislike the idea of change of pace running backs? With all runs are between the tackles and with James all runs are outside. Hunter when healthy is the only guy who the defense can’t look at in the game and know where the running plays are going to be.
    The Seahawks have 3 running backs that can run inside or outside but the do so with slightly different styles.

  4. I love that you can almost predict the answers to any questions posed to a Niner coach or player.

    Q: “Was that play executed poorly?”
    A: “The play was designed for xxx and player xxx made the decision he felt was best at the time.”

    Q: “Did xxx player make a mistake?”
    A: “xxx oposing team is very talented. (insert Niner player name) did a fine job against a tough opponent. It’s a team effort out there”

    Q: “Did you get outcoached”
    A: “.I wouldn’t say that. xxx opposing team had a good game plan and executed well.”‘

    Q: “What do you think of player xxx on oposing team?”
    A: “Great player. Great football guy. Tons of respect for him as a player”

    These press conferences are all so vanilla and boring – at some point I think the reporters are going to be able to skip them altogether and write up their commentary on what they know was said based on past experience :-).

    At least with Singletary you could get some good soundbites – usually a string of unrelated, unintelligble throughts that were easily made fun of!!

    1. Agreed 49erGirl.
      We need more R.Ratto’, L.Cohn’ and T.Kawakami’ who aren’t afraid to ask the tough “get under your skin” type questions.

      These type of reporters/sports columnist may be irritable to some, but they are still around because they re willing to step away from the sugar-coated cookie-cutter types to charter their own course.

      In other words, don’t be afraid to get a little dirty.

      1. I don’t know, AES. I think even Jim Gray would have a hard time getting under this team’s skin… They have formulated answers to just about everything :-). These transcripts should come with a snooze button!

      2. Nice! Think we could get JR to a 49er presser? lol! Maybe he could keep calling Harbaugh “John”… :-). Of course, Rome wouldn’t stand a chance in that fight….

        I remember watching Everett – one play always sticks in my head. 49ers D had good penetration behind the line (but were nowhere near him), and he fell to the ground in the fetal position anticipating a hit. Come to think of it, that’s the only memory I have of Everett…..

      3. My favorite Everett memory (aside from flipping the table on Rome) was my first year playing fantasy football in 1995. At that time, our league was so simple that we did not count interceptions as negative points. Combine that with the state of the league at that point which was that the losing quarterback typically threw for more yards than the winning QB, and Everett’s inevitable garbage time TD , (with no minuses for INT’s) and you have the recipe for a winning fantasy team.

        Regarding the press getting dirty, it isn’t that hard to ask probing questions without being insulting. Especially for someone who is supposed to have a degree in journalism. Making fun of someone’s name is juvenile for the elementary school playground and has no place in the world of professional sports journalism. While I am rarely a proponent of physical violence, making fun of a grown man’s name to his face is just asking to get punched. And if it happens, you have no one to blame but yourself. And yes I am talking about Slip Baseless.

  5. I watched the Seattle game again and their defense was solid if you dont count all the holding calls. They out muscled our offense all together and the pass rush was insane! I just don’t understand why we did not go to some sort of screen pass or a end around towards sherman, sense the defense was putting a lot of pressure on CK and Sherman was jamming Boldin! I would like for GRow to attack the defense if they blitz we should sneak the back or TE in that zone! Football is a game of confidence and we need to have a very solid game on both sides before leaving to St. Louis! GO NINERS

  6. Razoreater says:
    September 19, 2013 at 5:04 pm
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57W05-oopNA

    @Razor
    Almost forgot that interview with Rome and Everett (lol). But I must admit that it was the most contrived and scripted events I’ve seen.
    1. Everett continues to goad Rome to call him Chrissy
    2. Rome and Everett can’t contain/control their smiles at the specter of what is about to happen
    3. Everett begins flipping the table before Rome calls him Chrissy
    4. Everett pushes and catches Rome in one motion as Rome is falling off the set.
    It was obvious that the LA tv sports market was willing to stretch their stories to capture viewer interest. Only in Hollywood!

      1. Ex,
        The whole scene looked scripted. Why would Rome who is probably 5″ shorter than Everett and outweighed by about 25-30 lbs make such a insidious remark knowing the outcome?

        Not denying your credibility Ex, but to me, that episode smacked of Hollywood theatrics.

      2. AES,

        You need to rewatch that segment. I’m sure you can find it somewhere. Everett was smiling an I’m so f@##ing mad I could kill you smiles and Rome was smiling a I’m a punk and I’m can say whatever I want and you won’t touch me smiles.

        Rome never thought Everett would actually get physical. Rome saw Everett as a pu&&y. On top of that, if it ever got out that that was staged, Rome’s career would’ve been over.

        On one hand you say you don’t question my credibility, but then you basically say you still stand by your opinion. The only way you could do that, given that I’m saying I have first hand knowledge of a situation, is if you don’t believe what I’m saying. Which is understandable, since you don’t know me beyond this blog and if I’m full of crap.

        If you still don’t believe me, and it sounds like you don’t, please consider these questions:

        If it was scripted, why did it happen right at the beginning of the segment?

        If it was scripted, don’t you think there would’ve been a little more build up? The thing went from 0 to 60, just like it would if it was real, because it was.

        Why did they cut away from the “fake” fight so quickly? Wouldn’t they have wanted to milk it?

        If it was fake to “stretch their stories”, why did Everett not continue sniping back at Rome through the media?

        Why would an NFL QB participate in a “gag” that involves a radio host who called him a girl over several years? No athlete, let alone an NFL player is going to take being called a girls name in a derisive way, over and over again on the radio in the spirit of fun.

        If it was staged, why did Jim Rome block the footage from being used for a TV commercial?

      3. AES,

        Rome is actually almost a foot shorter than Everett and was probably more like 70 pounds lighter.

        Rome might’ve felt he was safe because he was so much smaller than Everett.

  7. Razor,

    You are completely wrong about your take on the Rome / Everrett. I was in the building when that was shot. It was not fake, trust me.

  8. Ex,
    If you say you were there, I don’t devalue your take.
    I’m simply saying that I have my doubts about the credibility of the event.
    Just one man’s opinion.

  9. Rome is a punk who needs a serious ass kicking. Seattle is a dirty team and the fan noise thing needs to be addressed by the NFL ASAP. That 140 decibel theing total bullsh*t and a blotch on the league…

  10. The whole “Seattle this …..what if the 49ers go 1-3….Blah..Blah..Blah”

    Is ridiculous & SCREAMS Paranoia!

    How about concentrating on the most important game of the season which is the next game on Sunday. For those who live in that world can worry for the rest of us.

    GO 49ers!

    1. Folsom,

      You’re right, the game against the Colts is important (almost as important as last Sunday night’s game in Seattle), and it should get its due attention.

      To win the game against the Colts (instead of losing, like they did against the Seahawks), the 49ers must get good blocking from their offensive lines (unlike the lousy blocking the O line produced against the Seahawks), they must have a plus TO differential (unlike the -4 TO differential they had against Seattle), they must limit or eliminate bad penalties (unlike the game in Seattle, in which the defense committed two costly penalties the extended TD drives), and finally, they must generate some offense, preferably with balance between the run and pass (unlike the pathetic offensive output they managed against the Seahawks).

      See? The Seahawk game isn’t the only thing being discussed.

  11. What can you expect, Roman will lie to his teeth about his Qb’s mistakes. Same thing with J. Harbaugh when he talks he covers it with smoke screen. They lied to their own players the way they played. But actually the 49er team played a terrible and slappy game. They got their butts whipped.

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