Head Coach Kyle Shanahan Press Conference
Head Coach Kyle Shanahan
Press Conference – September 15, 2021
San Francisco 49ers
“Injuries for today: [LB Dre] Greenlaw groin will not practice, [DT Javon] Kinlaw knee won’t practice, [CB Emmanuel] Moseley knee won’t practice, [DL] Arik Armstead has an adductor will not practice, [DL] Dee Ford ankle limited and [LB] Marcell Harris, oblique limited.”
As far as RB Raheem Mostert, is the procedure he’s going to have now more extensive than what you thought he might have when you talked to us on Monday?
“Yeah. The prognosis on Monday was what we had, six to eight. In further review, looking at other opinions, there’s a longer surgery you can do that will put him out for the year and that’s the way we’re going to go.”
Was that a surprise to you?
“When I talked to him and I heard all the other stuff, it’s not a surprise to me. The first prognosis I got was what I told you guys and that’s all I got at the time. But once I heard more stuff after the press conference, no, it made sense. I don’t think there was much of a decision to make after hearing some of the stuff.”
How do you feel like about the whole running back situation? Obviously, you drafted two guys. Do you feel like, as much as Raheem gives you, other guys can just keep you rolling?
“Anytime you lose a player like Raheem, Raheem’s a captain, one of the best players on our team, so that definitely hurts. As you can see with the way [RB] Elijah [Mitchell] stepped up when he came in he did a hell of a job. I have a lot of confidence in [RB JaMycal] Hasty to do the same and same with [RB] Trey [Sermon]. He’ll get his opportunity now, most likely to be up. So, we have some depth there. I think we always have, but I don’t think we’ve gone through a year here where we haven’t used all four of our running backs. So, I hope to not have to do that, but after one we’re down one and hopefully it’s sometime this year, we’ll get [RB] Jeff Wilson [Jr.] back too. But, it’s always that way in the league, especially with running backs, it’s next man up and we expect those guys to not miss a beat.”
Did you guys bring on RB Kerryon Johnson?
“Yeah. We brought him on practice squad. Yeah.”
Is he already here?
“Yes. Yeah. He should be out at practice today.”
Do you have more clarity on Wilson’s timeline?
“No, I don’t. I think he just started running. I hate to give a date because just like I did on Monday, I could be wrong, and it seems to be a big deal if I correct myself. I’m hoping in November, I guess the area that we’re saying, but it could be a little earlier. It could be later.”
Is Kinlaw’s injury something he’s going to just have to manage throughout the year or is that something he could get over?
“We’re not sure. That’s why we’re trying to take it slow with him. And when we have it’s gotten better. So, we’ve got to see how that continues to react. I think we’ll be easy with him today. Hopefully if it continues to go well today, he’ll get out there more tomorrow. When he hurt his knee in Dallas last year, it was a pretty bad injury that he ended up going on IR for. He got it cleaned up, but it still hasn’t healed quite as right as we want. So, it seems like when he’s gone, it’s started to affect him. So, hopefully taking it easy these last 10 days or so, it’ll start to get better and we’ll see how it goes day to day.
With Moseley, is there concern that this is a long-term injury?
“No, I don’t think so. I think we knew we had a chance last week, really which would make me feel pretty good this week. I think the traveling, stuff like that, doesn’t help a ton and that’s why he’s not practicing today. We’ll reevaluate it tomorrow, but I don’t think it will be a long-term thing.”
You guys brought in CB Dre Kirkpatrick during training camp for a workout. Is that just one of those things you knew where he was, you knew what kind of shape he was in, in case you needed someone he was at the top of the list?
“Yeah, definitely. [CB] Josh [Norman] was someone we were talking to too, we talked to Dre earlier on trying to get him into camp. I think we ended up signing an extra safety at that time in [former 49ers S] Ha Ha [Clinton-Dix]. But yeah, these are people we’ve been keeping track on.”
When you were watching film, how impressed were you by the offensive line? How much of a bigger challenge do the Eagles present when you faced them last year?
“I was very impressed with the O-Line last Sunday in the run game and the pass game. And I know it will be a huge challenge this week. Just watching the tape of Philly, I feel like I’ve been watching the tape of them since I was in the NFC East, like 10 years ago, it almost seems like the same guys out there. They still are the same effectiveness. You still see [Eagles DL] Fletcher Cox doing the same stuff, [Eagles DE] Brandon Graham doing the same stuff. Anyone who’s new is right up to their level. So, watching them last week I think there as good of a D-Line as there is in this league. And we definitely have a huge challenge this week.”
There was a question about how T Mike McGlinchey would operate in the rushing attack in space with all that extra weight. How did he come out of that game? How did he look?
“I thought he played real well. I know he came into camp a little heavier because I think he was a little lighter last year, but I see the same guy and I think he played a hell of a game.”
Do you know Eagles head coach Nick Siriani at all?
“I don’t. I talked to him on the phone once. Seems like a hell of a guy. I really like how he’s carrying himself and you can tell his team’s playing real hard and they looked real well coached in their first week. I know some players who know him and they speak very highly of him.”
Does his background, the trees he came from, does it show up on film, like what he tries to do?
“Yeah, you can see some of the places he’s been. I think he started out as a receiver coach with the [Los Angeles] Chargers and I think he really helped [Los Angeles Chargers WR] Keenan Allen out there. Especially talking to [CB Jason] Verrett about that. You can see how well coached their receivers are, which I’m sure he had an impact on. Their offense does a lot of new things, does so many things, but they’re using their skill set very well.”
WR Brandon Aiyuk is obviously extremely attentive and very strong rookie season? Is there any sense of an exhale there, like he took his foot off the gas pedal a little bit?
“Not totally. Anytime you do have a setback with a hamstring and you have a guy behind you playing as well as [WR] Trent’s [Sherfield] played, I know Trent wasn’t a first-round draft pick, so that might not be as obvious with the talent level, but he’s been a hell of a football player since he’s been here. Aiyuk’s been a little inconsistent because he’s been in and out with his injury. And that’s what we felt was the best chance for us last week. Aiyuk’s still got a chance to get that spot up and not rotate as much, Trent just doesn’t make that very easy. So, these three days are important in practice, how we balance out our game plan, how we balance out our routes. And I’m happy with Aiyuk. It’s nothing against Aiyuk. I’m just also happy with Trent too. And I think both of them can continue to get better.”
Where does he, he just started his second season, Aiyuk, where does he still need to grow?
“I’m not trying to single out any specifics, because it’s like every player you’ve got to grow in every single area. So, I know this is all kind of like we’re punishing Aiyuk or something, because Trent got even reps with them or we rotated those guys. I’m not going to sit here and say, he’s got to do the A, B and C to get back out there. It’s more, we’ve been practicing the last month and one guy has been there every day and the quarterback’s got a lot of confidence in him. I do. If he wants to be out there every single play, he’s got to be a lot better than the guy behind him.”
A lot of pressure on QB Jimmy Garoppolo using a variety of young running backs throughout the game. How hard is it to get those young guys to be able to pick up those blocks and protect Jimmy Garoppolo?
“It’s tough. The one that he there to [WR] Deebo [Samuel], the touchdown pass, they brought two to the back. Hasty I thought did as good of a job he could do on that. The way that backer blitzed him in the A gap, it’s a little bit of a tough situation that you can’t make a living putting him in that situation too much. And it was nice that Jimmy hung in there and made the big play to kind of scare people out of that. And he missed one blitz pick-up, on a play action route down there in the strike zone. I like to say that should never happen, but it does. And definitely happens a lot more than usual in someone’s first game. It wasn’t something he wasn’t sure of, he just hesitated a little second. And once you do that, you can’t go or you run into the quarterback. So, he knew it as soon as it happened. And because we came out with the win, I look at as it could be a good thing because I think that’ll help him not miss it again.”
QB Trey Lance, does he run your scout team in practice during the week? And if so, how much can it help you when you’re facing a mobile quarterback?
“Yeah, he does the majority of the scout team. I’d say he gets about 80-percent of it. And then we give [QB] Nate [Sudfeld] about 20-percent, roughly. That’s usually the main reps that your number two quarterback gets throughout the year. So, that’s always tough on that guy. But it’s awesome when you do go against a running quarterback and your scout team quarterback has that skillset. And when you don’t have that situation, we try to put in some more athletic guys at that spot, but the defense who is trying to play honest kind of gets an idea when you see, like in the last couple of years, [Jacksonville Jaguars QB] C.J. [Beathard] or [Cleveland Browns QB] Nick [Mullens] doing the passing plays and you see [WR] Richie James come in and do a zone-read type play or something like that. So, it’s cool when they get the same guy every time and you never know what’s going to happen, which will be how It is for them on Sunday.”
Does it make you almost feel like you’re killing two birds with one stone? He’s getting scout team running their plays, but maybe there’s some crossover, their plays and your plays, that can help him if he gets into the game?
“Yeah I think some. I think that’s one of the best things for a quarterback. When there is crossover plays, that’s great. But, also it’s kind of good for rookie quarterbacks when you’re on scout team all year, it’s also the only spots you get to relax and play football. When you’re trying to do your own offense and go through training camp all the time, you’re trying to learn all this new stuff and attack a certain defense. And that one, when you get a card that’s handed up, you just look at it and you try to put it into our own play. It doesn’t always match, but you kind of get to experiment a lot of stuff. And I think that’s a lot more beneficial for the guys if they do get that opportunity.”
How is it being back at the Greenbrier because you were in this position just 12 months ago, coming here in between back-to-back road games so having that experience, how much is that going to help you moving forward?
“Any time you know what you’re getting into, I think it always helps. The unknown to me when you get off your routine is what messes guys up a little bit, but that’s why we like coming here. They do it awesome, but we also know exactly what we’re getting into. We have a great facility that we don’t have to leave for all the football stuff. We’ve got two practice fields, two full fields, which is great. The wallpaper is rough in our rooms, that hasn’t changed. But everything else is pretty awesome.”
Is there a specific thing you ask Trey Lance you do when going through scout team?
“Yeah. If you recognize the play and you can put it in our stuff, try to follow that. The timing of the play, when to look, when you don’t have enough time to wait on a play, because your scout team O-Line is getting beat, don’t just sit there and take it, react like you would in a game. It’s also nice when you can do that and you have a quarterback like that too, that the defense is playing against. So, if it’s not there in rhythm, the same thing I’m going to want Trey to do in the game, run around, break the pocket, try to make a play. And that’s where he can practice it and at the same time, prepare our defense.”
Is there any concern about Armstead’s availability for Sunday?
“No. He can’t go today, which is always a concern. But he wasn’t too concerned about it after the game. I think it started getting sore for him the last two days. So, we’re going to be smart with him today and I’d be surprised if he didn’t go, but I can’t guarantee that.”