Roman on Jenkins: “I think A.J. does a lot of really good things.”

SANTA CLARA – Greg Roman spoke in the 49ers’ media tent Sunday morning. Here’s what he said.

ROMAN: Welcome. We’re entering our second preseason week. Guys are working real hard. We’re working through a lot of different situational stuff, base stuff. We’ve got the Kansas City Chiefs in our second preseason game, so it’s another great chance to get out and evaluate what we’re doing and what we’ve got. Guys are competing. A lot of good competition.

Q: Marlon Moore started at split end against Denver. Do you want to see different guys start at that spot throughout the preseason?

ROMAN: We look at starters as the offensive line and the quarterback. They’re going to start and play, but whoever plays the first play of the game, he’s in on the first play. We’re a multiple-personnel-group team. If you’re on the active roster, you will have a role.

Q: You’ve got so many receivers in camp. Are you able to get them all enough reps, and as the season approaches to do you want to get some receivers more reps than others?

ROMAN: That’s kind of a two-pronged question, the first being we’ve got good numbers there and we’re going to make a real effort to get those guys the appropriate reps. Secondly, we’re a multiple-personnel team and everybody’s getting a good amount of reps. I don’t know if there’s always going to be one guy who’s in there with the Ones. I think we’ve got some flexibility there, and that flexibility will continue to grow.

Q: Anquan Boldin and Austin Collie are your only receivers who have produced at a significant level in the NFL. Does that affect the way you evaluate Collie?

ROMAN: I think Austin brings a great pedigree with him. He had an injury before that kind of halted that, but Austin’s a guy who understand the game, a disciplined guy, he’s learning our offense, but any time you have a guy who knows what do, how to do it, understands coverage and all of that, that’s a bonus. We’re looking at the big picture of the player. Austin’s working hard every day. He’s taking nothing for granted.

Q: Do you adjust your play calling during a preseason game like you would in a regular season game, or are working more off of a script?

ROMAN: In the preseason we’re not so much concerned about what we call as opposed to who’s in and what do we want to see them do? That type of thing. The tactical approach is one that some take. I don’t know that we do. Preseason is a great time to build toward the season. There are some things that we’re looking at and evaluating schematically, but I think it’s more about the players, getting them out there and seeing what they can do.

Q: So it’s fair to say it’s more predetermined than reacting to the opponent and the situation?

ROMAN: I would say that’s pretty fair.

Q: Vance McDonald had several nice catches Thursday night. He also dropped a couple. Overall, what was your assessment of his performance?

ROMAN: Vance took a good step forward in the game. I like the look in his eye before the game. I think he graded out pretty well. Like everybody else, there are plays he wishes he could have back, but for a young guy like him it was a great learning experience. Everybody makes mistakes. We’re all human. But he doesn’t make the same mistake twice. Guys that don’t, they progress and keep getting better. That’s the emphasis.

Q: How would you assess his blocking up to this point?

ROMAN: Like everything, it’s a work in progress, but I’m pleased with where he’s at and where he’s going. He keeps making strides. There are some key components that fundamentally he’s got to understand, and that’s a process and that’s what training camp is for. He’s right where he needs to be.

Q: Why hasn’t A.J. Jenkins been able to put it all together?

ROMAN: A.J. is working hard. He had a couple of plays the other night he’d like to have back, but he had some good plays. We’re of the ilk that when you come in after a game, you learn from it, you move on and you get better, and that’s what we’re doing.

Q: Watching practice, it seems like he has his good plays, but he also has plenty of not good plays. Is it concentration? Why do you think that level of consistency hasn’t been there?

ROMAN: I think A.J.’s out there competing hard. I think everybody has those plays. You’ve got to bounce back from them. You’ve got to get better. You’ve got to learn from them. I think A.J. does a lot of really good things. He’s just got to continue to work and get better day by day.

Q: What does he do best?

ROMAN: There are a lot of things he does well, very well. I don’t know if I can pick one, but he makes some spectacular catches. He has big strong hands. He makes good catches. He’s getting better with his route running. He’s improving in everything he does. It’s just a matter of down in, down out consistency. I think we all need to strive to be better day in and day out, play in and play out.

Q: Will he continue to get more reps than the other receivers in practice and in games?

ROMAN: A.J.’s going to get a healthy amount of reps, as are the other guys.

Q: When the team brought in Kassim Osgood, he was known more as a special teams guy. Has he surprised you with his ability to play wide receiver?

ROMAN: He’s done a very nice job. From the day he got here, his spiral notebook was filled with information. He was cramming for the test when he got here. He’s really picked up the system well. He had a really nice game the other night. He’s a guy that’s got really good size and understanding of the game. Really smart guy.

Q: Why didn’t Jewel Hampton play Thursday night?

ROMAN: He’s just working through something.

Q: You helped develop Alex Smith. What do you think it will be like to stand on the opposite sideline from him this Friday?

ROMAN: He’s a nameless, faceless opponent. I’m very happy for Alex’s success and very appreciative of all the contributions he made while a 49er. I wish him nothing but the best. He’s a fine, fine competitor and quarterback.

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  1. Roman sounds like harbaugh, other then bold in going to be very intersting on who the five we will be that makes the team, sounds like Jenkins will make it due to salary cap. I think collie and Kyle Williams are safe. Lockettw? More? Who goes when Crabtree comes back?

  2. I know people want to throw AJ under the bus, I am not ready to do that,time will tell if he is going to be a first round bust. At the moment he is not worthy of a 3rd round pick.

    1. At the moment, and for the for the past year, he has been the worst WR in the team.

      You can’t turn a donkey into a thoroughbred….he should be cut.

    2. Well said Neal. Year 3 is usually when a team will know if a WR is a bust or not. That said, it’s interesting to say the least that Roman could not tell the media what Jenkins is the best at.

      1. Roman basically used a lot of words to say nothing about Jenkins.

        Thanks for asking those playcalling questions Grant.

      2. 3 years for a 1st round WR to determine if he is a bust? No way! This is it for Jenkins. The door is wide open for him this year to show what he can do.
        With Crabtree down Jenkins has had every rep to show what he can do. He is competing against undrafted guys, injury prone guys, and special team guys and he still cannot demonstrate the level it takes to be a regular.
        How could get it get any better for Jenkins this year to show what he can do? Sure last year there was no chance, by this year he has every chance and he is wasting it.
        He does have another three weeks but when a guy shows poor body language this early into preseason and coughs up the ball, it don’t look good.

      3. 3 years for a 1st round WR to determine if he is a bust? No way!

        That is the usual timeframe for a NFL WR Prime.

  3. G.Roman, speaking on the WR position:
    “We’re a multiple-personnel-group team. If you’re on the active roster, you will have a role.”

    Confirming my thoughts that the 49ers fill the #2 WR position by “WR by Committee .”
    But having said that, I have to believe that the team wants someone from the WR corps to emerge as the undisputed #2.

    My current front runner for #2 WR is K.Williams, but that is subject to change with three more preseason games on the docket.
    Players I would like to see more of in the next 3 games:
    M.Moore
    R.Lockette
    A.Collie
    And Q.Patton if he’s ready.

  4. I think they’ll start jenkins off slow at start of the season. Rotate him in at split end and slot and let him get comfortable and build confidence.

    Im starting to get excited about Moore. I know people site him never being able to make it on the fins, but there are a lot of factors to that injury, coaching, system, Qb, etc. Ive read some articles where they were excited about him at one point. Luck is when opportunity meets preparation. He just might be that jewel we need. Numbers dont lie, and he’s been doing it consistently against the 1′s.

    Thoughts?

    1. Leo
      While some people are late bloomers and develop late it is interesting hat the fins who had a nice long look at him chose to let him go and instead play with B Tyms (remember him) backing up Wallace, Hartline, and their other underwhelming receivers. Could he have imroved from year to year (a la Victor Cruz) and finaly be able to make the squad? Possibly but so far we hear him making the spectacular catch (dominique Zeigler) but not the routine one which are much more common in the couse of a game

  5. “I think A.J. does a lot of really good things.”
    Too bad he doesn’t do any of them in a football game………….

  6. I’m more concerned about the WR core. Everyone focuses on AJJ. Yes the dude needs to step up, but so does everyone else. We have to fill two WR positions with solid performers and we seem to be far from that…

    These next two preseason games is critical for us to get some clarity.

  7. Greg Roman Answered any questions about AJ being cut, “We’re looking at the big picture of the player”. That translates to his Cap hit to the team is the big picture so they can’t cut him…

    1. I disagree. Harbaugh, the guy who made the call to bench Alex Smith, wants competitors and players who will contribute 150%. They’ll unload AJ, no sweat, and add a player who will contribute.

      AJ is not only the worst WR on this team, I’d argue that he has been the worst WR in the league the past year. He is that awful…

      1. I agree Harbaugh wants competitors. However, he only rid himself of Smith when he was given value for him. He didn’t cut Smith when it would have handicapped the team. That unfortunately is the case for Jenkins.
        Cutting Jenkins would cost the team cap space. There isn’t any value in trading him because I doubt any team would make an offer. Instead, the value is in him succeeding and that’s what the Harbaugh clan intends to do whether Jenkins likes it or not. Harbaugh will make an NFL receiver out of him and doesn’t appear to be willing to fail at that challenge.

  8. Grant,

    Can you ask Roman or Harbaugh if Jenkins is competing for a roster spot, or is guaranteed because he was once a first round pick? Obviously they have a lot of receivers in camp, not all will make the team. Does Jenkins have to show anything to make the team?

    1. 7×7
      regardless of the answer JH does not gan anything by guaranteeing aspot to AJJ. First offit flies in the face of is “competition at every spot” philosophy. Secondly if annything AJJ needs to be motivated, hearing that he can phone it n and still make the squad could hamper his work ethic. And lastly what message does it sendto the team when u play a guy over a better candidte based strictly on draft position. Thelast time it did not work out well (M.Lewis benched in favor of wretched2nd rounder T.Mays)

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