Greg Roman spoke on KNBR Tuesday morning. Here’s what he said about Colin Kaepernick, LaMichael James and the philosophy of the 49ers offense.
Q: What have you seen from Colin Kaepernick that has improved and needs improvement?
ROMAN: Anytime, especially at the quarterback position, you go in there for the first time and you get the teams reps and you’re the starter that week, it’s kind of like a pitcher going in for the first couple times in baseball. People aren’t quite sure what you’re going to do. The opponent thinks they know, but until they see it they’re not quite sure.
Then after that, you’ve established things that you do well and people try to hone in on that. That adds to the challenge.
I think Colin’s up for it. I think he’s done a very nice job moving the team. That’s his No.1 job – moving us and getting us points. I think he’s improved in every area – throwing it, managing the offense, things that you have to compete every week to improve in.
Q: We’ve seen less deep passes from him lately. Are defenses trying to take that away from him?
ROMAN: If they don’t, I’d have to question their sanity. They should try to take that away. And that’s good. He is definitely somebody who can do a lot of different things.
If they’re going to try to take the deep ball away, then common sense dictates you work somewhere else and we’ve done a pretty good job of that.
We’re always looking to improve our efficiency. If you look at our team QB rating, it’s probably one of the highest in the league, and that’s for a reason. We’ve got some good players, and they really try to focus on doing things the right way.
If a team’s going to try to overemphasize taking away one thing, that leaves them vulnerable in other areas and we’ve been able to take advantage at times and need to continue to do so.
Q: Colin has two fifty-yard runs in the last two weeks. How much would like to see him run?
ROMAN: If you look at what we’ve done since we’ve been here – 30-or-so games – we’re always going to try to play smart. I think there’s a real balance. If the opportunities exist, we’d like to be able to take advantage of those opportunities. I they don’t or they might be, then we don’t want to, then we’d like to do something else.
If those opportunities persist, Colin’s a dynamic athlete, a dynamic quarterback – he can throw it, he can run it. One of those runs you talked about, there were ten guys on one half of the field on defense. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before. It was a no-brainer. I don’t think there was anybody but one defender, and Frank Gore chopped down on one half of the field.
When people take extreme measures to take away this or that and leave themselves vulnerable, you’re hopeful that your players can recognize that and take advantage of it.
Q: LaMichael James – did it take him this long to get ready, and what can we expect from him going forward?
ROMAN: It’s been definitely an advantage for the team having LaMichael working, giving our defense a good look every day, and learning the NFL game during practice.
And he’s a nice changeup at this point in the season. I thought he had a nice game the other night. I’m sure he’s looking to get back out there and get some more opportunities. We’re excited to keep integrating him into what we do in more and different ways.