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Kyle Shanahan provides final updates ahead of 49ers-Commanders Week 17 matchup

Dec 29, 2023 at 2:23 PM

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San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan spoke with reporters after Friday's practice, providing final updates ahead of the team's Week 17 matchup against the Washington Commanders. Here is everything he had to say.

Transcript provided by the San Francisco 49ers Communications staff.

Opening comments:

"All right for the game: [DL Arik] Armstead will be out, [WR] Jauan Jennings out, [S] Ji'Ayir Brown out, [OL] Jaylon Moore out, [TE Ross] Dwelley out, [OL Aaron] Banks questionable, [CB] Ambry Thomas questionable, [WR] Danny Gray questionable, [LB Demetrius] Flannigan-Fowles questionable and [RB] Jordan Mason questionable. Go ahead."

Is Ji'Ayir Brown's situation something that could keep him out of the last game too?

"I hope not. He was fighting to go this week, so that means he has a chance next week."

Is Flannigan-Fowles a new one?

"Yeah, I think it was on yesterday. He's been sick the last couple days and JP I think is a new one. He just got sick today."

Obviously no designation for T Trent Williams?

"No, he's good."

What have you seen from S Logan Ryan since you've had him to give you confidence that he can step in and do his thing?

"Just us playing against him. He always seemed like such an aware, smart player and a guy that had a lot of experience playing a lot of different defenses. We brought him in here when we had a few injuries. He looked just since he's been here like what we hoped he was. Now that we've had those injuries, he is in that role. He's looked exactly like we hoped he'd be. He's very comfortable and knows what he's doing and the game's not too big for him."

You mentioned that the biggest issue with QB Brock Purdy in the game against the Ravens was how he responded to the interceptions, not the interceptions themselves necessarily. How do you feel he responded this week?

"Awesome. Yeah, he was great. I think, no offense to you, but I'm so exhausted talking about the interceptions from our game last game, but it's been like any other week and like any other play. He goes through each play one at a time and tries to do as best he can."

Regarding when Brock on the rare times he's had a bad game or a bad moment, he gets up in front of us and he's not at all defensive and he's very open about what happened and the mistakes he made. Does that to you suggest a level of confidence he has in himself? What do you make of the way he kind of publicly handles his failures?

"I just think it's him. That's how he is when I coach him. He says what he thinks. I say what I think. He's a very humble guy, but extremely competitive. That's just Brock. That's how I see him handle talking to people out of here. He's always going to take responsibility. He doesn't just do it because he knows how to talk to the media. That's how he looks at things. He always looks inward first and he genuinely feels that way. Sometimes I think he's too hard on himself in terms of that. Not too hard on himself, that's just how he is. But it's cool that he never shows frustration. I think it's pretty easy for him because I don't think he has a lot of frustration with other people. I think he always looks at what he can do better."

What's it like coaching a quarterback who has a tendency to be a little too hard on himself sometimes?

"Much better than the opposite way. I would say that with everybody. You'd rather someone be a little harder themselves than take it easy on themselves. But I think especially all football players, you want them that way."

Going back to training camp and opening the season, two backup offensive lineman with a lot of experience, OL Matt Pryor and OL Jon Feliciano. Then you guys have added guys like Logan Ryan and DL Sebastian Joseph-Day. How much of that is an organizational philosophy to have backups who can step in and who have experience over guys who might be on the younger side and you're developing?

"I think huge. It's not necessarily that's the overall philosophy. Our just overall philosophy is in that given day, in that given week, in that given season, what gives you the best chance to succeed? It might be the younger guy. It might be the older guy. I think it's very wrong when you take an absolute philosophy to anything. Like, 'hey, you've always got to give the younger guy the first shots because he needs that experience and that's how you develop him.' That's great, but not at the expense of the other 52 guys on the team and the organization and losing games. The first decision always is what helps you win the most or gives you the best chance to win. In a league that it's very hard to develop guys because when you do anything at a professional level, it's hard to do it at extremely high level when you're not working on it year-round. So, those guys who really can play in the NFL are usually guys that have experienced the NFL. They know how to handle those situations. They were fortunate enough to get those so they could go through that and get better. I hate the feeling of there's one guy left and you believe in that guy a lot, but he's not quite ready. But there's no third string and that guy's got to go. Now he goes in and he plays three games before he is ready and the team gets frustrated with him because he makes some mistakes, he's not ready. The guy loses his confidence. Sometimes that can kill a guy, but you have no other option. You can't always have the luxury of bringing vets in because if you always do that, then you never have youth coming up. But, that's what's so cool about the 16 practice squad guys, the six vets we're allowed. That's what has allowed us, to me, do some things like that over the last few years that used to be real hard to do."

Do you get surprised often? Do you look at somebody and think this guy is not ready and then you play him and you're like 'whoa, didn't expect that?'

"Sometimes. Not that much. They usually show you they're ready in practice and then you know they're ready in the game. Sometimes a guy you might not know how much is in there, he might be quieter. We don't just knock the crap out of each other in practice and stuff. You might not know all that's in there. Then the game comes out and you're like, 'oh my God, that guy's a gamer. He's a dog. There's another aggression level to him.' But, it's very rare that you think a guy's not ready at all and he gets in there and just shocks you because if you're ready you usually show it at practice. But there can be another level when your energy's going."

With a few practices under his belt, what workload do you anticipate for Joseph-Day?

"I mean, he's looked great in our three practices, even though only two periods of them were full speed. But I mean, he looks like the guy we've gone against. I expect him just like all these other vets, he's going to get in, he's going to try to make plays, try to do his job and help us contribute to the rotation of our group."

How much concern is there with Jauan? I know this was the second week of him being in the protocol.

"There's always concern. I don't want to talk too much about it because the protocol's very simple and how it goes. But, he's had some real positive days here I think in the last few days and I think he's going in the right direction."

With the Rams game next week either on Saturday or Sunday and if it was Saturday that would be your second short week in a row. Do you guys have any say in regards to when you play?

"No. I wish."

You would prefer to play Sunday?

"Yeah, and that's the answer for every single person in the NFL."

WR Ray-Ray McCloud III's eligible to come back next week. Is he ready to do that?

"We'll see next week. I haven't asked him yet, but I think it'll be close."
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