No changes are coming for 49ers’ beleaguered defense

There will be no changes to the 49ers defense, coach Mike Nolan said today during his Monday press conference.


“No, I’m looking for us to play better,” Nolan answered when asked if changes were coming.

Gary Plummer, the radio analyst on 49ers’ broadcasts, said this morning on the KNBR Morning Show that there needed to be changes. Click on this paragraph and look under Monday, Oct. 13, to find Plummer’s interview with Murph & Mac.


The 49ers have a veteran defense. How can a veteran defense make these kinds of mistakes? Nolan said the same as a young defense, by not paying attention to detail. He said the 49ers need to be more consistent.


Has the coaching staff put together good game plans?


“I think they’vre OK, but at the same time that’s been part of our issue,” Nolan said. “We’re looking at the whole package.” He said they need to look at every part of their preparation.


Nolan defended cornerback Walt Harris and Mark Roman. When asked if Dashon Goldson should get more action at Roman’s expense, Nolan said he would stick with Roman.


“Mark’s a good football player,” Nolan said. “He helps us win and helps people around him, and makes the players around him better. They feel assured he’ll do his job. . . . Not to take anything away from Dashon. Dashon’s a good player. Will he help our stealing the ball? I don’t know. In the ‘Big Sub,’ he was in every down. He has been playing, and I don’t recall seeing him get turnovers at that time.”


–Nolan said he is not looking to take defensive play-calling duties away from coordinator Greg Manusky. “We collectively discuss a lot of it,” he said. “There’s not a whole lot of calls that I would’ve changed, but at the same time we look at where can we do our part to assist the players?”


INJURY UPDATE: Fullback Zak Keasey will be placed on injured reserve with a torn biceps tendon in his right arm. The 49ers probably would’ve called Moran Norris, however, he just signed last week with the Detroit Lions. The 49ers are discussing what to do with the roster spot. Delanie Walker, Billy Bajema and Michael Robinson can all help fill Keasey’s role in the offense.


Linebacker Manny Lawson’s return this week after missing two games with a hamstring strain is “probable,” Nolan said. He said he was not sure about the status of tackle Jonas Jennings, who has been out since Sept. 14 with a right shoulder injury.


–Nolan said the loss of Bryant Young is not the problem. He said he has confidence in the guys who are playing right now.


In response to my earlier blog about the NFL saying the official ruled David Akers’ go-ahead field goal was below the top of the upright, Nolan suggested that is not what he was told on the sideline or this morning.


–Nolan said the team’s system for challenges is a good one. He said it’s a collective decision, but Nolan gets the final decision.


On the Eagles’ second drive of the game, the 49ers missed an opportunity to hold Philadelphia to a field goal when Hank Baskett appeared to drop a third-down pass. The Eagles scored a TD several plays later.


I watched that sequence today. From the time the replay was shown on TV, a full 15 seconds elapsed before the Eagles ran another play. I asked if Nolan had his headsets on at that point.


“That’s a good question,” Nolan said. “I didn’t get anything said to me until later. . . . I can’t recall.”


Is there a system in place so that if you don’t have your headset on, they can get to you?


“Yes there is,” Nolan said.


–Nolan called the criticism of offensive coordinator Mike Martz’s fourth-quarter playcalling as hindsight. Nolan said the thing the 49ers’ offense was able to do throughout the game was keep the Eagles off-balance. Nolan said the 49ers felt like they had the Eagles off balance at the start of the fourth quarter.


–With the trade deadline looming, Nolan said he has not had any discussion with GM Scot McCloughan.


The 49ers do not appear interested in making any trades, especially for a receiver. The Lions contacted them to gauge interest in Roy Williams. The 49ers were not interested. Williams was not known for putting in a lot of time to learn Martz’s system.


–Nolan was told that there’s a lot of disappointment, anger and frustration from the fans — a lot of directed at him. Can he understand why the fans are so upset?


“Sure, we’re losing,” Nolan said. “We’ve lost three in a row. . . . The only thing I’m concerned about is winning and trying to win.


“Fans want to win and I want to win, and everything we do is geared toward winning. And it’ll stay that way. Everything else is peripheral.”


* * *