Curtis Modkins talks offense, Jeremy Kerley, Colin Kaepernick, more

Aug 29, 2016 at 12:20 PM--



Opening comments:

"As far as the game goes, obviously we've got some things to work on. That's pretty normal. We're trying to work on being more consistent and I think coach has probably mentioned that. We lacked a little bit of consistency, a little bit of execution. But, I thought when the guys figured it out that second drive we kind of got going. So, we've been working on things, talking about some things and we're looking forward to trying to get that corrected. I thought that guys played hard. We had a couple guys make some plays. [RB] Carlos [Hyde] had a big run there. I thought [RB] Mike Davis ran well. [OL] Trent [Brown] blocked well. Our guys played well in spurts. We've just got to be able to put that together for an extended period of time. So, if anybody has any questions, fire away."

Curtis Modkins Previews 49ers Preseason Finale  

What do you guys like about WR Jeremy Kerley and how quickly can he be assimilated into this offense?

"Jeremy gives us some depth as a slot receiver. He's played a lot of football in this league as a slot. He also gives us some versatility as a returner, so he's added depth that we really need and I think he'll be able to get caught up to speed fairly quickly. I have a history with him also. I had him in the Senior Bowl, I think when I was at Buffalo. So, I'm kind of familiar with what his skill set is and look forward to seeing it."

Did you guys look at him on the free agent market this offseason?

"I don't really remember that. That's not my deal. I don't remember that. All I know is I'm glad to have him here now."

How do you think the starting offensive line did with T Anthony Davis at right guard and do you anticipate that being the same five that starts Thursday?

"You know, I don't know yet. We don't know. We haven't gotten that far as who's starting, who's playing, all that. I do think Anthony did some good things. I think it's just going to be a continued process of him hearing the calls inside, getting more and more comfortable to see where we go with that. So, I don't have an answer for that right now."

This last game was your first chance to see QB Colin Kaepernick in a game setting. What were your impressions, three series, 12 snaps, what kind of takeaway did you get from watching him?

"I think Colin was a lot like the rest of our offense. I thought the rest of our offense was inconsistent and he probably had some decisions he'd take over and want to do back and offensively I think we were all like that. So, it was his first game back. I'm glad to see him get in there. I thought he went through his reads and he did all that stuff well. I thought he made good decisions. He was just like our entire offense, inconsistent."

He did take off out of the pocket a few times. Had he gone through his reads on those and was there just nobody to throw too?

"There are things that happen sometimes. Sometimes a guy might get out of the pocket because of pressure or a receiver might not be in the same spot. There are a lot of different factors on why a quarterback gets out of the pocket. The bottom line is we've got to get better offensively. I know Colin would like to play more consistent, but our entire offense needs to be more consistent also."

What would you say the likely is that Colin will start the regular season?

"I don't know. We will see. We haven't gotten that far. We're still working and we'll see how that goes."

What do think about the attention that's been drawn to the team regarding his decision not to stand for the national anthem? Do you support that?

"I support our flag, personally. But, I also support someone's right to feel how they feel. So, we've moved on. Our organization has made a statement on that. I know coach has. My concern right now is this coming game and the Rams and if you've seen them on film, you'd be concerned too."

How do you make sure though this controversy swirling around the team doesn't become a distraction for the players?

"Our guys have handled that. I don't see that happening. Chip's handled that, our team, our guys, our leaders, have handled that. Colin's addressed it, so we're moving on to football.

What would you say the overwhelming sentiment is within the team, within the locker room, about his decision? Of course a decision from the quarterback would impact the rest of the team off the field.

"All I feel from my team is they are ready to play this Thursday and we are getting ready for the season. So, I don't get the sense of that one way or another. I think our guys are ready to play football and I think they've moved on from this."

Can you kind of go over the offensive dynamic that you've kind of grown these last few games? Just how you work with Chip in terms of running the offense, what's game day for you?

"Well, I'm in the press box. We all communicate. I communicate directly with Chip. It's been great. It's been great experience, the way he handles the game. I think our guys have responded. We will continue to kind of mesh that out, continue to work on that. We've got another game and then hopefully we will have all the kinks ironed out, but we are trending in the right direction, I think, our game day operations."

Can you just go over a little bit just how the communication works because it's so fast to go over which plays are going to be run and if he's calling the plays, do you like give him insight into what you're seeing up top? Is that how it's going?

"Yeah, you know, in between series, at halftime, in between halves, in between series, we're able to obviously talk a little bit more about possible adjustments, what we're seeing. He's very receptive of that. He asks questions. But, during the process of a drive, there's things he has to know. Hash, down and distance, all those sorts of things that we try to get to him relatively quickly."

Will Colin be on this roster Week 1?

"That's not my decision. I would anticipate that, but it's not, you know, that's not where we're at right now. We're getting ready for the Chargers right now and he'll be there. So, I don't anticipate that not being the case."

Is there a running back that's kind of started to emerge as a number two running back for you?

"You know, I really think those guys are neck and neck, to be honest with you. I think [RB] Shaun's [Draughn] our number two, but I think Mike and [RB] DuJuan [Harris] are kind of neck and neck to see where that spot lies and I think both of them are doing a good job. So, we'll see how it falls this week."

You mention the Rams, how much work have you already done toward that game and when will you really ramp up towards game planning for that?

"You kind of always have it a part of what you watch and prepare for. So, we haven't specifically started but you know, you always try to watch some of it and start gathering some thoughts and ideas. But right now, we're focused on San Diego and making sure our guys have the best possible chance to be successful Thursday night and we'll move onto the Rams after that. But, you always have an idea of what they do."

Are you expecting WR DeAndre Smelter to play Thursday?

"I'm not sure. I haven't gotten any reports from [vice president of football operations Jeff Ferguson] Ferg yet about where he's at and if he'll be able to go Thursday."

Watching practice, it seemed like former 49ers WR Jerome Simpson was one of the most consistent receivers. Can you just go through the decision to release him over the weekend?

"Well, you know, our management made a decision to let him go and I think part of that was to give him an opportunity to hopefully catch on with someone else. Jerome was great. I really liked him. He was really professional when we let him go. We wish him nothing but the best. But, that's the numbers. That's what the NFL's about. It happens. We just, we're moving on with the guys we have."

Is that an endorsement though of some of the young guys that were behind him on the depth chart before his release?

"I don't know if it's an endorsement or an indictment. It's just decisions are made. We made the decision. Now we move forward."

How do you think political statements impact the team and impact the very large fan base that you guys have?

"Obviously, what we do, people take notice of. But, to be honest with you, my concern is San Diego. So, I'm probably not the right person to ask that question."

If Kaepernick plays Thursday, would he have the benefit of the first team offensive line? Most teams don't play their starters at all very long in that fourth game.

"Yeah, I mean, there are always some things you do as far as holding players out. We haven't got there yet. We'll kind of make those determinations, we normally do that the closer we get to games. So, we'll see how that goes."

I realize you were at TCU a while ago now. Was there any connection with Kerley before that or was he on your radar just because of his college?

"Well, I've known him since then. Like I said, we also had him in the Senior Bowl when he came out of college. So, I've been familiar with him for a while, but no specific connection because of TCU."

* Transcript provided by the San Francisco 49ers





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