Head Coach Kyle Shanahan Press Conference

Head Coach Kyle Shanahan

Press Conference – October 4, 2021

San Francisco 49ers

Listen to Audio I Media Center

 Opening Comments:

“Alright guys, injuries from the game, [K] Robbie Gould had a strained groin. He’ll miss some time. [QB] Jimmy Garoppolo has a calf contusion. We’ll have to re-evaluate him in the next two days. We’ll see how he is on Wednesday. [T] Trent Williams, shoulder, day-to-day with that. [TE] George Kittle, calf soreness. He’s also day-to-day, very similar to where he was at last week. We’ll manage that throughout the week. [DT Javon] Kinlaw, knee, same thing, continue to manage. [DL] Samson Ebukam had some hamstring soreness. We’ll manage that throughout the week also.”

Does that mean that Jimmy has a chance to play on Sunday or are you expecting him to be out versus the Arizona Cardinals?

“No, it does mean he has a chance. It wasn’t as bad as we thought it might’ve been. Seeing him today, he’s in a lot of pain. He’s still sore. Hopefully by the time he comes in Wednesday, if it’s getting better, then he’ll have a good chance. Looking at it as a bruise. If it hasn’t improved at all by Wednesday, it’ll probably be a little bit longer.”

With that said, how would you like to see QB Trey Lance approach this week?

“Every week you want to tell him to approach it like you’re the starting quarterback. But this is the first week going into it that he’s legitimately got up a chance to on the first play. So, he’s got approach it that way, learn from the stuff that he did last night, and come in ready to go on Wednesday.”

If Lance does have to start, are you confident that he’s prepared to do so? And if so, why?

“Yeah, when he comes in and gets the gameplan on Wednesday, he’ll prepare all week really hard for it, and he’ll practice really hard and he’ll be prepared to play on Sunday.”

With Trent Williams, is it just some like a sprain or what’s going on there exactly? And then how relieved are you that it’s more of a day-to-day thing at this point?

“Yeah, that was some of probably the best news we got considering what we were worried about initially. There is some fluid in there so, there are some issues with it, but that’s stuff that hopefully he can recover from here before Sunday.”

Just kind of in that same vein, it didn’t sound great about Garoppolo or Trent Williams yesterday. Did you have kind of a sigh of relief at some point today when you got the news?

“Yeah, I’ve left feeling good about stuff, about injuries from what I hear on Sunday and I’ve come in on Monday morning and it hasn’t been that way. And vice versa. So, I try to never fully go one way or the other until we find out for sure. And at least we know that it’s nothing too serious where it would be long-term, which was a possibility. I think Trent we got a little bit better news than Jimmy, but Jimmy, we’ve just got to see how it reacts here in the next two days. But both of them were definitely better news today than the feeling we had last night.”

Now after looking at the film, how are you feeling about the run game? Is it progressing? Are your new guys getting a little bit better?

“We definitely ran the ball better throughout the game. Seattle with their 8-man fronts are always a challenge to do it. And I thought we ran the ball against them better than we have the last few times we’ve played them. It’s still not a finished product. There’s still a number of things I’d like us to do better. There’s a couple of looks I thought we left some yards out there on but I thought we improved in that area.”

Did you guys say how RB Elijah Mitchell is coming along?

“Yes, I’m being told that by this Wednesday, he should be able to practice and get that blue jersey off. So that’d be huge to get him back and hopefully he’ll be feeling better this week. It’ll be nice to see him get some reps without the blue jersey on, which is a no-contact jersey.”

What were some of the teaching points, I guess if you could summarize, that you went over with Trey because it was the most significant action he got to play?

“There’s stuff on every play that we talk about, but just in general, I was talking to him about how he felt in there. You always picture your first NFL game and when you got to go in there and I know he’s been in for some plays, but not really to do every single play like that. And just getting in and out of the huddle, being with the guys, I think he enjoyed the moment. I thought he did a good job making some plays, especially when some weren’t there with his feet. A couple of passes I know he’d like to have back, but it was really just getting that experience and talking to him about how it was and all the things that can happen on each one of those plays and how it pertains the next week too.”

How did you feel OL Jaylon Moore played in Trent Williams spot?

“When he came in, he did a good job. He was thrust in there at the end too for the two-minute drill, which isn’t always the easiest time to go in. But he did a good job while he was in and if he needs to be ready this week, he’ll have all week to prepare for it and we’ll give him even more reps than he’s been getting and we’ll be ready to go with him.”

How did you think RB Trey Sermon fared yesterday getting a little more extended work?

“I thought he took a step in the right direction. I thought, like I kind of said with the whole run game, I thought he was better this week than he was the week before. But, I still know there’s another level for him.”

Do you have to make a change at kickoff returner?

“I don’t think so. We’ll look at it throughout this week. I think [RB] Trenton [Cannon] made a hell of a play versus Philly. He’s looked good out there throughout his career when he has had those opportunities and he’s helped us this year, but that was a bad play that he made yesterday with the fumble, really bad. And I know it didn’t help him the next play either. We have to evaluate that throughout the week, but I wouldn’t say I have to make a change, but definitely have to have some competition there throughout the week.”

After looking at the film, how do you feel or how do you assess how the defense played this week?

“I love how they started out. When you have, I think it was three-and-out for the first five series and they just did a really good job on getting them to third down and then being very aggressive on third down, whether it was with the blitzes or whether it was with the front four and with our coverages. And I thought they gave them a lot of problems. In the second half, I thought Seattle did a little bit better on first and second down. I still think we held him on the first drive. They got into a third-and-one, I think that was their first real manageable third down that they had, they got a big play on it and got into the red zone. And every time they got into the red zone, that’s when we struggled the most. We gave it up four times down there in the red zone and that’s where we got to get a lot better.”

Were there major adjustments that were done or was it just small tweaks that helped them be more effective against Seattle?

“Yeah, I don’t think it was many adjustments or tweaks. You’re talking about what they did in the second half?”

Overall, compared to Week 3.

“I thought our energy was better. I know we were amped up for the Green Bay game, but just watching us out there and how we came out, I felt the guys a lot more. The way the 11 guys were playing on the first play, all the way to the end. I thought our team really fought. I thought we were aggressive. I was very proud of how the guys were. But as a whole, we didn’t do right long enough. There were too many mistakes in some crucial times and do that versus a team like that who’s got some of the players they do, gave them a few too many opportunities and they got more points than us.”

WR Trent Sherfield played a few more snaps than he did the week before, was that about what your plan was going into the game?

“Yeah, that was our plan versus Green Bay too. [WR Brandon] Aiyuk had earned more reps to get back, but we weren’t trying to make it so lopsided versus Green Bay, just the game played out a little different. But it was a little more realistic or a little more what was expected last night.”

Have you seen more progress for Brandon Aiyuk in the passing game?

“Yeah, I have. He’s trying to work on being more consistent and it’s still a work in progress. We’re going to keep pushing him hard at that. Not a lack of effort. B.A.’s working at it and I expect him to keep trying to get better here.”

Could he be back after the Bye Week?

“Who was that.”

Robbie Gould.

“Yeah, I think he possibly could. We’re going to have to decide that throughout the week, whether we want to put him on IR or not. Probably be anywhere from a three-week to five-week injury. Not exactly sure. We’re going to see how he reacts this week. When you go on IR you have to miss three games. It’s not just three weeks. So that’s something we’re going to have to decide as this week goes.”

Are you planning on bringing kickers in tomorrow or do you have a guy in mind or?

“Yeah, I know those guys are working on it and I think we’ll have a number of guys tomorrow to work out.”