Special Teams Coordinator Brian Schneider Press Conference
Special Teams Coordinator Brian Schneider
Press Conference – August 1, 2023
San Francisco 49ers
Can you go over just the end of practice there? How far was that kick from K Jake Moody and just how well is he kicking in this camp?
“He is doing really well. We’re trying to give him a little bit of everything and try and get all situations. That last one I think was 60 and we backed him up for the last one. So, he’s right on schedule, doing everything he needs to do.”
The range he has is what we expected to see. Has it been as impressive for you guys?
“Yeah, and we’ve got to continue to test that out and see. So, we’ll continue to do that with different weather and different circumstances. So yeah, we always try to get a feel for that and every game that usually changes too.”
Is the linebacker position going to be very competitive at the cutdown because there’s three special teams guys and some really young, up-and-coming players?
“Well, I think they’re all special teams guys and I love it when they’re that competitive because it’s really exciting for me because there are a lot of really good players there and so we get the chance to train everybody. I love it when you have that competition because it makes everybody better and it makes our team stronger. So, they’re all doing a great job too.”
With the new kickoff rules, do you approach practice any different in terms of covering kickoffs and doing kickoff stuff?
“For sure our kickoff return team. That’s where I think we have to really be prepared. And we just call them dirty balls or squibs or things on the ground where people are going to try to make you return it. So, the spacing and time on that is affected. So not as much our kickoff because those principles are similar, but the kickoff return with all that, I think you have to be prepared for a lot more things that way.”
We haven’t seen a lot of reps from the returners, but CB D’Shawn Jamison was a dynamic returner at Texas. Do you get a look at how he’s doing as a returner or is it really solely during the preseason?
“Well, it always starts with fielding, and they do that every day. So, we’re making sure they’re fielding, that’s what they can do. When [P] Mitch [Wishnowsky] is punting or at the jugs, we’re going to find time to get those reps because if you can’t do that you’re not going to be back there. And really you don’t get the live looks as much. We’ll do some drill work where the returners are putting their foot in the ground and practicing that, but really that’s once you get the confidence that they can field the ball cleanly and then they get the opportunity in preseason. So really that’s when they get their shot.”
Feels like K Zane Gonzalez is probably in this kind of weird limbo situation where he might not be here when the regular season starts. How’s he kind of handling situation?
“Well, I don’t think he’s in a weird situation. I think he’s in an awesome situation and he’s been wonderful here. He’s really talented and him and Jake have worked great together. And really, to me, that’s just the competition. I view all 90 players that way. We’re getting stronger, we’re competing. Both of those guys are going to be kicking in the NFL. They’re approaching it that way, they’re playing that way, they’re helping each other. And it’s just been really cool to have that competition in camp.”
When you came here, the special teams unit was kind of struggling. I’m sure as a veteran coach you had options. You can go a number of places. Did head coach Kyle Shanahan have to recruit you with some kind of, ‘Hey, we’re going to emphasize special teams here, we’re going to put more money into it.’ What is the pitch that a head coach would give a top tier special teams coach to attract him from other situations?
“Well, I knew Kyle. I was with Kyle in his first job out of college at UCLA. So, I’ve known him for a long time. And I think number one, when you get around here, from a distance, I’ve always loved the 49ers toughness. That was always the toughest game. The way the organization is represented and the way they play, I’ve always liked that. And then with Kyle here and seeing them play, more importantly being around here last year, just the way the organization is run, and more importantly the way Kyle coaches and the way he tells the truth. It’s just straight football, straight honesty. Players always know where they stand. Coaches always know where they stand. So, you get rid of a lot of stuff and it just focuses on football. And that’s what I love about being here. And the players are great football minds that way. They love to play, they love to practice and it’s really enjoyable. And I think that starts with [general manager] John [Lynch] and Kyle, just the way they do it.”