Head Coach Kyle Shanahan Press Conference

Head Coach Kyle Shanahan

Press Conference – September 27, 2023

San Francisco 49ers

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Opening comments:

“The injuries for practice today. [WR] Deebo [Samuel] will be out ribs, knee. [WR] Jauan Jennings out, shin. [LB Dre] Greenlaw out, ankle. [WR Brandon] Aiyuk limited with his shoulder. [CB] Ambry Thomas is limited with his knee. Go ahead.”

QB Brock Purdy was saying after the game that things started out a little choppy, but over the course of the game you guys started to figure out the blitzes a little bit more, kind of understood when they might happen and how they might happen. When that happens and you’re kind of doing things in-game like that, how does that happen? Does it come from your coaches up above? Is it the quarterback kind of talking to you? How do you kind of figure things out as the game’s going on?

“All the above. There weren’t many changes made. It was more just settling Brock down on the looks and stuff and just helping describe to him what he just saw. If he did see something and missed it, just to explain why he missed it and to show the look of how many people are in this spot, ‘Hey, that’s this look.’ Ask him why he saw it differently, things like that. And that’s why teams disguise. That’s why they do a bunch of stuff. But, nothing we had to make up. You’ve just got to coach when guys come to the sideline.”


Is he good at that?

“Yeah, he’s real good at that. Yeah, he’s real good.”

How did you spend your weekend, watch any football? Did Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel’s team scoring 70 catch your attention at all?

“Yeah, I think it caught everybody’s. It was an awesome weekend, don’t get much time to sleep in a little bit and relax. I got to go to a high school football game. I got to go to a very exciting cheerleading competition. My son unfortunately had a BYE week, so I didn’t get to see one of his games. And then it was awesome just to watch football on Sunday. A lot of it I was in a high school gym watching on my phone because I was in a cheerleading competition. But no, the Miami game was crazy. They played so good and they really had it done, it seemed like about eight minutes to go. So, it could have been a lot worse, but it was fun to watch.”

You had your next two opponents playing each other too. Did you get the chance to watch that game?

“Yeah, that was cool just to watch both the teams, our next two opponents. We’ll see a lot of it over the next two weeks. So it’s not like on our day off we’re that locked into it because we know that’s going to be our next Monday and Tuesday also. But just to watch it from a fan perspective and enjoy it with my family and stuff, it was fun to see.”

How do you not look past Arizona? What did you take away from their performance? It was kind of a wake-up call.

“Yeah, but all you have to do is watch the two games before that also. They had every chance to win versus Washington in Week 1. I believe that they should have. I forget the exact score, but I want to say it was like 27-7 in the third quarter versus the Giants and they had every chance to win that and it got away from them at the end. Dallas was very similar, but they didn’t turn it over there at the end and they kept finishing and keeping them out of the red zone and ended up not being close. So, they’re a team that really should be 3-0 right now.”

Did you say Deebo’s out with a knee or?

“Yeah, he’s got rib and knee.”

Is that something new that popped up?

“It was something we didn’t really know until the next day later in that day. Just him being sore and stuff. He didn’t realize it until later.”

What did you say for Jennings?


Arizona Cardinals head coach Jonathan Gannon’s defense in Philly and the defense in Arizona, how are they similar? How are they different? Has he changed anything?
“It’s real similar because it’s the scheme he runs, just the fronts and the coverages. He had such a sound, good scheme at Philly and that’s what it’s been so far in these three games. So, we’ll see on tendencies and stuff, how that changes up. It’s still early in the year how he’s going to use his personnel and stuff like that, but you can still see he’s doing what he does and it’s a very tough scheme.”

What do you see from Arizona Cardinals QB Josh Dobbs?

“I think he’s playing real good quarterback play right now. He’s one of the reasons they’ve been in every game. They’re really committing to the run, try not to give up explosives and keep guys out of the end zone on defense and he’s not turning it over. He’s been extremely decisive. When it’s there, he consistently makes it, when it’s not there, he plays it smart, doesn’t turn it over. He has been able to scramble and makes some plays. He’s been very competitive in the quarterback run game when they haven’t honored him.”

When you’re watching the Dolphins game or seeing any of your coordinators doing well, is there ever a sense of pride?

“I mean, you’re always happy for people that you know and also people you’ve been with. I think it’s a lot more fun to watch guys in the AFC then you can truly cheer for them. When it’s guys in our own division or conference, it’s not very fun. You’re kind of annoyed. But it’s always cool, especially guys who’ve been with you for a long time because you get to see more formations, you get to see stuff that you do and you get a lot more looks at it.”

What has been your impression of the way Mike is, especially with Miami Dolphins WR Tyreek Hill, with his short, fast motion?

“Kind of what you expect. Tyreek is such a unique dude. He’s the one dude with those motions who is fast enough to run any route known to man off of him. And not many people are like that, so they get to try a lot of stuff with that, which Mike’s as good as anyone at trying stuff and being creative. They did that in Week 1 with a little cheat motion. We did it in Week 2 after we saw it. The Rams did it about three times versus us in Week 2. I’ve also seen every team probably do it since Week 1. So it is a cool motion. And they’ve got a real cool guy to do it with.”


What do you call it?

“We call it cheat.”

Why is he cheating?

“I don’t know. It looks hard to stop people like Tyreek and Deebo and stuff with a running start. That’s usually only in the CFL. So it’s cool to get them running sideways and still find a way to hit it vertically.”

Shortly after you hung out with us on Friday, the extension was announced. I assume that meant that you aren’t real comfortable talking about it. So I’m going to ask you. What does that mean to get that extension, your second with the 49ers and just kind of what you’ve established here, you and General Manager John Lynch and what does it mean going forward?

“I mean, we did it before the Pittsburgh game, so I’d already celebrated with my family and stuff like that, which is huge. I feel very grateful. Just being a coach anywhere for a long time, I know what that means and extremely grateful for that to have that opportunity and mainly for my family to be somewhere for so long, which is cool. But, doing it before this season even started, I think meant a lot to me. Just shows you the people that we’re with, that we believe in each other, despite what could happen whether we were 0-3 or 3-0, we’d still be in the same situation. I really like where we live and really like the people we work with, and they’re committed to giving us a chance to go for it every single year and that’s all I could ever ask for.

Knowing the landscape of the NFL and your previous long stint of four years? So knowing that you’ve now added a few years to your football life expectancy as a coach, give me the perspective on just how difficult it is for a coach coming into a situation that wasn’t real good to have that kind of staying power?

“It’s tough because you don’t know the people until you get in those situations. So sometimes when you come into a situation that looks really hard to win in the first couple years you’re nervous about it because you know how the pressure goes when you lose, no matter what people say. It gets tough to stick with the plan and that’s what made it so exciting the first time, meeting with [CEO] Jed [York] and the commitment he gave us and what he said. I really feel like that made us make the right decisions for those first couple years and helped build it the right way. And that’s really what got us to come here, allowed us to be patient, do it right, and he hasn’t changed ever since. I love being in a building where you trust each other, you can always try to do what’s right, might not always be right, but the intent of what we’re doing, why we’re doing it, how we’re doing it, we all believe in each other in that way. To me that’s the most important thing in giving you a chance.”

These extensions for you and John have been real close together in terms of getting it done. How important is it to be aligned and make sure that you guys are going to be riding this out together?

“I think it’s huge. I think it’s all part of it, just from the ownership, to John, to the coaching staff, to our players, to the whole building. We feel very connected and we like what we’ve established here, but more importantly we believe we’re doing it the right way and that’ll allow us to have a higher percentage of doing it the right way going forward.”

I think if I’m doing the math right, if you coach out this contract and you don’t get fired or whatever you’ll be the longest tenured head coach in 49ers history, surpassing former head coach Bill Walsh. I’m sure you’re not thinking about this at the moment, but is that cool to think about? Is it weird to think about that you could be here this long?

“Yeah, hypothetically it’d be very cool. Contracts do not mean anything. They mean a lot, but that doesn’t mean anything in that aspect but to be even asked the question with someone like that is really cool. I feel very fortunate for it and like I said, we did this at the beginning of the year so it was very celebratory with my family and everything. But once the season started you kind of realize you feel the same in every other aspect. Nothing really changes.”

You mentioned the other day that you were interested in hearing from the league on LB Dre Greenlaw’s latest penalty. Curios if you if could pass along any of that? Are you concerned at all that he’s kind of getting a rep in terms of the amount of unnecessary roughness penalties he’s getting, that he will get more of them even if he doesn’t deserve them all?

“Yes, thank you for asking that again because I do have to check on that. I know he got it written up so I need to go read it. But anytime you play like Dre, he doesn’t hesitate in anything he does, so he jumps off the screen to people. But you’ve still got to call it right. It’s harder when people are like that. But he plays one way and if he is ever playing a way that’s illegal or anything that’s not allowed, we will change that fast. But Dre is a very talented athlete and very physical and a violent player who can play that fast and keep himself out of trouble for the most part. And I think he’s done a very good job of that throughout his career. The hardest one was the one versus [Los Angeles Chargers QB Justin] Herbert last year, which was just unfortunate, but I think he’s done a real good job at it.”