This is the transcript of Colin Kaepernick’s Week-13 press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ P.R. department.
How are you enjoying the humidity?
“I’m all about the humidity and heat. A little easier to get warmed up. A little easier to get going. Feels good out there.”
Yeah, that’s what TE Vance McDonald was saying, that you guys actually feel a little bit better playing in the hot weather. Was that kind of uniform for everybody today?
“I think that’s uniform for more of the skill players. I think the big guys like it a little bit cooler, keep them a little more hydrated, a little less fatigued.”
How did you make it out of this game physically?
The last play, it looked like you took a really big hit.
“No, it wasn’t too bad. It was more the fact that [Miami Dolphins DT Ndamukong] Suh got me from behind. I didn’t realize that during the game, but after watching film, he did a good job retracing and grabbing me from behind on the goal line. But, that’s why I do a lot of stretching and a lot of mobility things to make sure if something like that does happen I’m prepared for it.”
Was there a facemask involved in that play?
“That I don’t know. I can’t tell.”
But your legs, it seemed to buckle the way he was bringing you down. That’s why it looked like it was kind of awkward.
“I mean, felt a little awkward as far as how I ended up laying, but no everything’s fine. Everything’s good.”
How are your legs doing? You’ve done a lot of running through six weeks. Are you conditioned to the point where you feel like you’re still fresh?
“Yeah. I feel very fresh, feel ready to go, ready to do whatever this offense needs me to do to try to help us get a win.”
Why do you think that your rushing yards are so much greater than they’ve been at any point in your career as far as yards per game? Do you have any theories as to why you’re gaining more yards rushing?
“I think part of it is this offense lends itself that that. There’s more opportunities for that, especially being in three-receiver sets most of the time, a lot more space out there. So, scramble lanes are bigger. When we do run zone-read there’s more space there as well.”
But, most of your yards are coming off scrambles and not designed runs, correct?
“I think it depends on the game. I think it really varies.”
Do you feel like you’re making as good of decisions as you’ve ever made in terms of when to take off, when to stay in the pocket?
“I feel like I’m getting more and more comfortable in this offense. Ultimately, I think that’s what it comes down to for a quarterback is getting comfortable in an offense, really getting your feet settled in, getting that foundation to be able to go out and just play freely and this offense has been great for me in that way.”
I know we’ve talked about before how you feel like you thought this offense would be a good fit for you, but now that you’re six weeks into it, how has that maybe kind of manifested itself?
“Well, I think it’s showing more and more every week. The more I get comfortable, the more receivers and offensive line get comfortable with what’s going on, I think we put up more and more yards, give ourselves more and more opportunities to score. Now, we just have to convert those opportunities into points.”
Head coach Chip Kelly when he’s asked about you has talked about and how you’re improving, he’s noted, you know, look at quarterbacks when they stay in the same system, you know, New England Patriots QB Tom Brady and New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees being obviously examples. But, I guess this is getting to a question about your future. It would seem logical that you would want to stay in this offense which suits your ability and stay with Chip. Does that seem logical to you?
“No, I’m focused on Chicago this week. I’m not thinking that far down the road. But, that’s very true as far as quarterbacks being in a system that they’re familiar with, they’re familiar with the coach, why they’re calling plays, they’re on the same page so when you step on that field you know exactly why your coach is calling that play, what his intent is and what you’re trying to get done.”
Your last four games by some statistical measurements are your best four games of your career. Does it feel like that? Do you feel like, as people would say, the old Colin?
“I feel like I’m trying to continually get better. There have been games that we’ve played well but we haven’t won and ultimately that’s why we play, is to win. So, for me, there’s opportunities to improve, opportunities to get better and to have more yards, more points on the board and I think that’s when we’ll really start thriving.”
You didn’t get a chance to play against Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio’s defense last year. Is it familiar to you? When you look at it, do you see the old 49ers defense from a few years ago?
“Yeah. Familiar. Obviously, a lot of different figures in those positions than when I was going against it in practice. But, yeah, structure’s the same, a lot of things that you look at and you can kind of fall back on as far as practice. So, that’s something that will be useful this week.”
You guys won the last time you went to Solider Field last year. Does that instill more confidence that this is going to be the game where you guys can turn it around? Does that help?
“I think ultimately it’s going to be our play that determines that. We’re continually getting closer and closer to wins. We have to get over that hump now. We have to be able to cut out the turnovers, the penalties, the mistakes that are killing us and put points on the board in those situations instead of shooting ourselves in the foot.”
WR Torrey Smith was just saying that he hasn’t had very many nine-route opportunities this year. Is it something that the defense is doing to specifically take that route away from him? He’s so good at it.
“I think it’s a combination of things. It can be the defense. It can be the play call, what we’re trying to get done. It can be a situation in a game. There’s a lot of things that go into whether or not you’re going to throw that ball, whether that’s an option on a particular play and we just haven’t had those opportunities yet.”
It wasn’t that long ago that people, I certainly never wrote this, but didn’t view you as a viable starting quarterback anymore. The beginning of this season, after the Buffalo game, or whatever, that conversation seems to be changing. I’m sure you may have heard some of the criticism. Do you find it, is there redemption for you? Is it satisfying, like ‘I told you so,’ or what are your emotions?
“Steadfast. For me, I know what I’m capable of, I know what my teammates are capable of and I believe in that. And ultimately that’s what our focus has to be. That’s where our mindset has to be in order for us to continue to keep going and to pull out a win.”
Are you going to do any community outreach stuff while you’re here? Just since you guys are away from home for the week, find something to do?
“There’s not going to be a lot of time. This is a business trip for us. Our focus is trying to get our first win in a lot of weeks now. So, our mindset and focus has to be on that and making sure we’re doing everything we can to go out Sunday and get a win.”
Are you going to have your website on your cleats on Sunday?
“No, I won’t. I figured I would get fined for that.”
The NFL is allowing players to do whatever they want to showcase their various charities this weekend.
“I didn’t know that but–.”
Sacramento Bee reporter Matt Barrows has something designed for you.
“You have them in your car?”
It’s a project I’ve been working on.
“No, I won’t. But, my website is up and running. It’s on my social media. So, people can find it there if they’re looking to follow up.”